Friday, July 25, 2008

Danish Open Air Campaigners

Because of its emphasis on open-air evangelism, i.e. taking the gospel to where the people are, Friluftmissionen is one of my favorite ministries in Denmark. Friluftsmissionen is the Danish branch of an international organization called Open Air Campaigners [the Danish word friluft means outdoors or open air]. National branches of this evangelistic thrust are usually inter-denominational. However, given the religious situation in Denmark, Friluftsmissionen has until recently worked exclusively with Folkekirke and independent Lutheran churches. That is changing some as opportunities present themselves to work with some of free churches. Many of the free churches tend to be more aggressive in their evangelistic outreach. Friluftsmissionen has added an evangelistic presence amongst sympathetic Lutheran churches that is not usually a vigorous aspect of the Folkekirke modus operandi. It also allows Friliftsmissionen to sustain good working relationships with the various revival movements within the Folkekirke (state Lutheran church) and now with some of the free churches was well.

Torben Østermark, the national director of Friluftsmissionen and a good friend of Pray for, recently contributed a paragraph for Open Air Campaigners International 2008 Update. It is a worthwhile assessment giving a glimpse of an aspect of Friluftsmissionen ministry:

“Every summer we are a team of about 20 people doing two-week outreach at the biggest camp site in Denmark. The camp site is owned by a Christian couple who want us there to share the good news about Jesus amongst children and youth. One of the activities is a youth café every night, where we talk and witness and drink coffee. At midnight we preach a short message. There was a message this summer which was very encouraging. One of the young guys, who visited us several times in previous years, became a Christian during the last year. He gave his testimony: ‘Some of you know me. I lived my life far away from God, but I became a Christian, because Jesus changed my life.’ It was wonderful to hear it. And the others listened very carefully. We are looking forward to next year. We hope and pray that some of them will receive Christ during the next year.”

Friluftsmissionen’s website may be accessed at Though mainly in Danish, parts of the website are also in English. Friluftsmissionen is a unique evangelistic and faith ministry in Denmark that deserves to have its support base enlarged. The organization’s address is Kirkegade 14, Hvidovre, Denmark 2650.

PRAY for wisdom in Torben’s leadership of Friluftsmissionen and for his and fellow evangelists’ seizing of new opportunities for direct, aggressive evangelism throughout Denmark.

PRAY that Friluftsmissionen will be able to effectively model means and methods of evangelism to prepare Lutheran-related believers to reach uncommitted Danes with the gospel of Christ.

for attentive and responsive English language listeners at open air evangelistic efforts during the summer months when there are thousands of visitors traveling in Denmark, many of whom come through Copenhagen.

PRAY for increased financial support for Friluftsmissionen’s workers. As a faith ministry, each of the evangelists and their families are dependent for support upon God’s provision through the generosity of His people in Denmark and elsewhere.