Montana on a Mission is the outcome of an initiative conceived in 1996 when Dennis and Ellen Freed built a house in the tiny barrio of Calunasan Sur on the island of Bohol, Philippines. The intense poverty and profound need of the residents of the barrio quickly became evident to them. When a young mother died of an infected mosquito bite in 1998, they were motivated to get involved in providing poverty relief to the residents of the village. They shared this sense of urgency with their church in Big Timber, Montana.
In 2004, the Big Timber Church responded to a need to resolve dangerous drinking water issues in the barrio by sending funds and a team of short-term volunteer workers to assist the local inhabitants in constructing a water system throughout the village. This project required the drilling of two wells, the construction of several cisterns and the installation of thousands of feet of pipe. As a result of this effort the residents of the entire barrio have safe drinking water piped to their door and many have indoor plumbing.
Since then, more than twelve teams and two hundred individuals from a variety of churches have travelled to the barrio to assist on a number of projects.
All of those projects follow the calling of our mission statement: “To inform, invite, and initiate concerned Christians toward action… To join God by working with Him on His mission to the world. We do this by coming alongside those in need, by giving them a “hand up” in life that they might praise God and grow in their relationship with Christ.”
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