Thursday, April 21, 2016

For up to date blogs, visit

Muslims in Metro New York

I recently completed a fresh research update on the Muslim population of Metro New York. There are nine separate blogs complete with descriptions of different Muslim populations, maps of where they live, population estimates, etc. Links to the various blog posts are below.

Blog 1 - One Million Muslims
Blog 2 - Specific Muslim Group Estimates
Blog 3 - African-Americans and Hispanics
Blog 4 - South Asians
Blog 5 - Arabs
Blog 6 - Arabs (cont)
Blog 7 - Europeans
Blog 8 - Central Asians and Persians
Blog 9 - West Africans and Indonesians
Chris Clayman
Director of Mission Advance, Co-Founder
Global Gates

Thursday, November 6, 2014

An open door

Fifteen years ago, the relationship between Saudi Arabia, homeland of Islam, and the United States was cool at best. Opportunities for Christians to live there were limited and difficult.

Thirteen years ago, with the violence of 9/11, connections were severed, travel restricted, and hostility ensued. Persecution of Christians increased, missionaries were forced out.

Nine years ago, King Abdullah met with President Bush and began a massive scholarship fund and opportunity for Saudi students to study in America.

Now, there are over one hundred thousand Saudi Arabian students flooding into American universities.

They are here. Talented young men and, increasingly, women from a country known for birthing some of the most radical Muslims in the world are being paid by their government to come and study here. The scholarship fund makes efforts to provide this opportunity not just for the wealthy, educated class, but for a wide range of their citizens, from all socio-economic levels. The same country that will not allow their women to drive will allow them to earn bachelors and masters degrees from American universities. Universities in Kentucky, Indiana, and Tennessee and other states now have Saudi Arabian students in the hundreds attending their classes, eating in their restaurants, living in their cities.

The scholarship program has been extended until 2020. Then, this window of opportunity may close. The students will go home.

But what will they take with them?

Because Saudi Arabian students are coming in such large numbers it is easy for them to remain within their own ethnic communities. Language and cultural barriers often prove to be hurdles too great for them to overcome, even though they may long for a friendships with local people. A Global Gates missionary recently sat down with a Saudi student who admitted that even though he had been in America for two years, their meeting was his first time sitting down to talk to an American. They come to America on a scholarship program that lists “mutual understanding” and “cultural exchange” as some of its key priorities, but many will return to their homeland having never entered an American home, never made an American friend, and even more shocking, never heard the Good News of Jesus.

The home that they will return to is hostile to the Gospel because it is the stronghold of another faith, the land which all Muslims face when they pray. In Saudi Arabia, it is illegal to build a church building and difficult to do long term mission work. Martyrdom and persecution are serious issues for anyone even considering Jesus. Some Saudis have even reported that they were having dreams about how the Lord was working among them; however, nearly one hundred percent of the students coming from Saudi Arabia have never had a Gospel conversation with a Christian.

This may be their only chance to meet Jesus.

They will return home with a diploma and an interesting life experience... but they could take with them so much more. They could return to their families with a new life, faith of greater worth than gold, and news of salvation by grace alone. They could... only if Christians in America are awake enough to see the grand opportunity before them, bold enough to open their mouths at such a strategic time and share, devoted enough to enter with love into lives that have no access to the Gospel.

What if each of the over 100,000 Saudi students in America right now had the chance to hear? 

Will you tell them?
For more information about connecting with Saudi students near you please email

Thursday, October 23, 2014

A whole new Perspective

The Colombian man works a late shift washing dishes in a busy restaurant surrounded by Bengali people. He has picked up a few words of their slang and they treat him like a brother simply because he knows what it is to be foreign in an English speaking world. For sixty hours a week, between loading and rinsing dishes, he works with them, side by side, and talks with them, bit by bit, and slowly gets to know them and their families. He knows the one who has a son who is struggling in school. He knows the other whose wife is nearly sick with depression from being so far away from everything familiar. He knows the young one whose mother is on the other side of the world and a scratchy phone call does little to bring her close. More than that, he knows what it is like to experience all of those things since he himself has the same troubles. They are all Muslim and have never experienced freedom from darkness, but the Colombian, he is Light.

The Hispanic Church in the USA is a sleeping giant.

There are many Hispanic Christians in America who live and work side by side with people of different faiths. Even though they are passionate about Christianity, they may not have realized the full potential of their position in this country as a way to fulfill the Great Commission. Often, Hispanics in the U.S. view missions as reaching out to other Hispanics or returning to their home countries to do orphan care ministries and other humanitarian aid. Even though these things are a great blessing, and often needed, it is different than fulfilling the Great Commission of going to those who have not yet heard the Gospel. One of the greatest tools used by God over the last few decades to help people understand their role in missions in the Perspectives on the World Christian Movement class ( put out by the US Center for World Mission. The Perspectives course is more than a missions mobilization course; it helps people get in touch with God's heart for the world, and also the Biblical mandate and reasons for mission, to "Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous deeds among all peoples." (Ps. 96:3)

Hispanic Christians naturally live between two cultures, and have thus been equipped by God to usually have an easier time relating and being sensitive to people from other cultures and to do cross-cultural outreach. A Spanish Perspectives course is all about helping them see the opportunities that God has uniquely gifted them to take hold of, catching the vision for their role in God's heart for all nations, and to encourage them to boldly proclaim His truth to the unreached world all around them. This course, along with other shorter seminars and group studies, have the potential to empower a huge evangelical force.

Translating Perspectives into Spanish has only been completed in the last few years, and now, for one of the first times in America, the entire fifteen week course is being offered completely in Spanish. Here, in New York City, pioneering Hispanic pastors, lay leaders, professionals, and blue collar workers in a variety of ages and representing more than eight South and Central American nationalities are learning about God's great burden for the people who have never heard His name.

They are learning and they are doing. Even now, small groups from Hispanic churches are being driven to pray for their unreached neighbors living in their own communities. Even now, Hispanic Christians are being moved to train others to reach out to Muslims. Even now, this great sleeping Giant, is being wakened to fulfill their roles in God's grand rescue plan for all the nations of the world.

The Colombian man recognizes his Bengali co-workers, his Algerian neighbors, his Senegalese friends, and many others, as people whom the Lord has been longing to draw to His eternal kingdom. Through the Perspectivas course, he has studied the truth of God's word and found therein all the boldness he needs to declare God's glory among the nations. He is a Christian from Colombia, English is his second language and America is his second home; and in so being he is uniquely equipped to reach out to the unreached in his midst. May this city, and many other American cities, teem with other Hispanic and non-Hispanic Christians who are so compelled.  

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Take advantage of every opportunity

A Perspectives course, taught in Spanish, targeting Hispanic Christians, and passing on the vision of reaching the world for Christ...

Perspectivas is happening now in New York City... here's why: 


Thursday, October 9, 2014

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Sheba's legacy: Outreach to Yemeni Immigrants

The Queen of Sheba had heard many things about this King, about the wisdom that Yahweh had granted him. She had heard, but she did not believe until she went to see him, spoke with him, asked him all of her questions. Then she knew that Yahweh was a great God, who blesses greatly, and it took her breath away.
Yemen, the probable home of the Queen of Sheba, now the poorest country in the Middle East, no longer remembers Yahweh. With eleven civil wars in the past sixty years and the Arab Springs uprisings throughout the region, the country has had little opportunity to stabilize, creating an ideal climate for al-Qaeda bases to grow. Desert and mountains, camel herds and terraced farmland, slaves and businessmen, qat and mangoes, all rub shoulders in the still tribal, southwestern-most point of the Arabian peninsula, an entirely Muslim land. The Queen of Sheba once traveled great distances to witness the blessing of Yahweh and now her homeland is one of the least-evangelized countries in the world.
Some recent headlines about Yemen suggest the depth of difficulties their citizens face: Terrifying Yemen Hostage-Taking, Yemen Government Signs Peace Deal with Shia Houthi Rebels, Dozens of al-Qaeda Militants Killed in US Drone Attacks on Yemen, Yemen President Warns of Civil War. The tragic list goes on, the opportunities for Christian involvement there close, and Yemen’s emigrants pour into American cities.
In New York City alone, the Yemeni population is at least 20,000 members.
In each of the five New York City boroughs, as well as other American cities like Oakland, CA and Dearborn, MI, Yemeni immigrants own small grocery and convenience stores. They are hard workers, sometimes working fifteen hour days seven days a week, and sending much of their income home to their extensive familial and tribal networks in Yemen. Most of them have no intention of staying, but dream of making enough money to one day return to their country and family. They are as close as a can of Coke, or bar of soap. The most dangerous thing that one need dodge to get to them is a speeding taxi or a wandering pedestrian. But, is there anyone doing it?
Currently, there is little evangelical ministry focused on Yemenis in Metro New York.
Like the Queen of Sheba, they have come from the ends of the earth, to our street corner. They have left poverty, violence, and war; homeland, familiarity, and family to start a new life or sustain their current one, as our neighbors. They have come with questions, their eyes open for something great. If we do not go to see them; shopping at their stores, sharing with them the Good News of Jesus, and answering all their questions, when they are right before us, then how will they know that Yahweh is a great God who blesses greatly? What will take their breath away?

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Gossiping About Jesus

When Jesus walked the earth, He was the talk of the town!  Some people loved Him, some hated Him, but EVERYONE knew of Him and His message! He was the topic of conversation at dinner tables, religious centers, and town squares.

Jesus is NOT the talk of the town in most places on earth today. We keep Him and His message confined to buildings and programs. To experience Jesus, we require people to enter into a foreign structure, to take on foreign customs, and sing foreign songs. What feels so right to us, is completely foreign to those outside of our cultural Christianity.

Must a Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh, or Jew become “Christian,” to know the love and forgiveness of Jesus?  Must they first convert to our culture before they can know the joy of having their sins forgiven through Jesus? 

This dilemma is nothing new! The book of Acts records how Paul, James, and the early church fathers wrestled with this! These questions are not easy ones, because they pull at us at the very core of our personal Christian experience.

Global Gates missionaries minister, to once again make Jesus the talk of the town! We envision Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh, and Jewish households gossiping about Jesus, and the change that is happening among their family members, neighbors, and communities- a change that is not hidden away from the majority of the people. Join us in praying that Jesus will become the talk of the town in our communities!

Brad Wall
Assistant Director,
Global Gates Network