“I will keep my promise to you and to your descendants
On February 6, 1812, Adoniram and Ann Judson were commissioned as missionaries from the Congregational Church and they set sail for India. But while out on the waters, Judson began to read the Bible anew about the issue of water baptism. Arriving at the conclusion that believers should be baptized by immersion, the Judsons were baptized by British Baptist missionaries when they reached Calcutta, India, that September.
Their life-changing decision celebrated not only individual new life through baptism, but the birth of a new gathering of people, partners and churches: a new society of Christians who would support, send and celebrate the work of mission. That movement, formed in 1814 as the American Baptist Foreign Mission Society, is now known as International Ministries.
IM has grown and evolved over more than two centuries of ministry. It is the oldest international Baptist mission agency in North America. Its central mission is to work cross-culturally to invite people to become disciples of Jesus Christ and to proclaim, through both word and deed, God’s reign of justice, peace and abundant life for all creation.
Adoniram Judson is known to have said, “Our future is as bright as the promises of God.” God promises to be with us, never to leave us, and that through God, anything is possible. The story of International Ministries is seeing the impossible become God’s promises realized.
The story is one of surprises by God and God’s people as we seek to make disciples of Jesus Christ.