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Arab World Ministries U.S. Merges With Pioneers-USA to Become a Leader in Ministry to the Muslim World

Contact: Matt Green, 321-231-5624

ORLANDO, May 17 /Christian Newswire/ -- Pioneers-USA and Arab World Ministries U.S. announced today their joint intention to merge organizations. Together their combined ministry will be at the forefront of reaching Muslims for Christ in the heartland of Islam.

"AWM has a 130-year legacy of ministry, so this was not a decision we made lightly," said Bob Sayer, AWM U.S. Director. "In 2008 we made a strategic decision to explore opportunities for mergers or partnerships to ensure a strong future for our ministry. Pioneers has not only been able to recruit teams at an unparalleled rate, they've engaged a new generation of people willing to serve in some of the most difficult environments around the world. We viewed this as an answer to prayer as slowing mobilization rates were probably the biggest challenge we were facing for the future."

Founded in 1881, Arab World Ministries (www.awm.org) is an evangelical, international and interdenominational mission with a focus of making disciples and establishing churches among Muslims of the Arab world wherever they reside. More than 400 AWM personnel of 30-plus nationalities serve in North Africa, the Middle East, the Arabian Peninsula and major cities in Europe and North America.

"Our entire organization is excited about bringing the strengths and capabilities of Arab World Ministries into Pioneers," added Steve Richardson, President of Pioneers-USA. "Our core mission is church planting among unreached people groups--those with no access to the Gospel--and there are few areas that represent such a high proportion of unreached people as the Arab world. In closed societies and hostile environments AWM has succeeded where others have failed, and we are eager to learn and gain from their experience and expertise."

The two organizations will combine U.S. operations and are working to finalize the merger by September 30, 2010. AWM's Philadelphia-based U.S. offices and staff will be merged into Pioneers' offices in Orlando this summer. Both Pioneers and Arab World Ministries have operations in Canada, the United Kingdom, Europe, and elsewhere engaged in planning and preparations related to this merger. Once the merger is complete, AWM's ministries and programs will continue within the greater organizational structure of Pioneers.

Pioneers was co-founded in 1979 by Ted Fletcher, former national sales manager for The Wall Street Journal and currently has bases in the U.S., Canada, Latin America, Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia and New Zealand. An evangelical, interdenominational mission with 2,000 members serving on 191 teams in 92 countries, Pioneers mobilizes teams to glorify God among unreached people groups by initiating church-planting movements in partnership with local churches. For more information visit www.pioneers.org.