FAQ

What is ACCTS?
The Association for Christian Conferences, Teaching, and Service (ACCTS) is a non-profit ministry which helps military Christians of armed forces around the world follow Jesus Christ. We focus primarily on militaries of other countries, which make up more than 96% of the world’s armed forces. [Back to top]

What is ACCTS’ mission?
Our mission is to assist in the development of Christian leaders in the armed forces of the world and in the establishment and growth of military Christian fellowships (MCFs). [Back to top]

So, you minister to U.S. military personnel who are stationed overseas?
Yes, but they aren’t our main focus since there are dozens of ministries reaching out to the U.S. military and their families. ACCTS concentrates on a huge unreached people group made up of military and their families from other countries. There are about two million people in the U.S. military, but more than 60 million in other countries’ uniformed services, which includes active and reserve forces, national police and militias, border guards, and others who serve in uniform. ACCTS was formed to address the unmet spiritual needs of international service personnel. [Back to top]

How does ACCTS accomplish its mission?
ACCTS is a relationship-oriented ministry that mentors military Christians who want to live for Christ and reach out to others within their military. Building up international military personnel and their families by discipling, equipping, and encouraging them to integrate their faith into their personal lives and military careers changes them, their military, their countries, and the world for the better. Building on long-term personal relationships and friendships, we help them to establish and grow indigenous, self-led, self-supporting military Christian fellowships that are adapted to their national laws, customs, and cultures, and connected with other countries’ fellowships. ACCTS also provides ministry resources and conducts and coordinates other ministry to build healthy and effective Christian leaders, families, and fellowships, such as the following:

  • Conducting leadership and ethics training to equip indigenous military Christians to live out their faith as military men and women;
  • Co-hosting (with local military Christians) Bible conferences for cadets and young officers, English language camps, and courses on conflict resolution, finances, marriage and family, and other topics;
  • Connecting military Christian leaders and fellowships with the resources available from ACCTS and other ministries;
  • Conducting chaplaincy courses for full-time, volunteer, and designated chaplains from other nations, and helping to establish official multi-confessional chaplaincies;
  • Befriending international military students studying in the United States, sharing Christ with them, and connecting them with other military Christians in their nations or regions for when they return;
  • Providing administration and staff services to the world-wide Association of Military Christian Fellowships (www.amcf-int.org), including publication of their quarterly newsletter and prayer reminder. [Back to top]
  • How is ACCTS funded?
    Approximately 95% of our donations come from private individuals in the U.S., with the remaining 5% coming from chapels and churches. [Back to top]

    Is ACCTS affiliated with any denomination?
    No. ACCTS is an inter-denominational ministry that is not affiliated with any denomination. However, we do cooperate with various church denominations, chaplains, and ministries. [Back to top]

    Does ACCTS minister in the same way in every country of the world?
    No. The Gospel is not just for the West, but for the world. Because of cultural variations, a one-size-fits-all approach to ministry does not work. Some nations enjoy full religious freedom, while others do not. We strive to be sensitive to the differences among nations so that each military Christian fellowship conforms to the laws, customs, military regulations, and cultures of that country. Yet in every case, character and integrity are central to Christian witness, so ACCTS encourages military Christians to integrate their Christian faith into their military careers and their personal lives, including their marriages, families, and finances. [Back to top]

    Who are ACCTS staff members?
    ACCTS staff members are mostly retired military officers and their spouses who, after retiring from their military careers, devote themselves to ministry with international military Christians.

    Retired U.S. military have a unique opportunity to connect with influential people that most missionaries could never reach. During their time on active duty, U.S. military personnel deploy around the world and meet other military men and women from many countries. Besides the mutual respect and friendship that results, military people share an immediate common bond related to the separations, sacrifices, and dangers they experience. The friendships and relationships they develop during their careers often open doors later on. Friendships with military Christians from other nations are further strengthened by a shared desire to learn how to live for Christ within the military environment. [Back to top]

    How are ACCTS staff members paid?
    Most are not paid. The majority of ACCTS staff members serve as volunteers, raising funds to cover their direct ministry expenses and working from home except when on ministry trips. The ACCTS office has one full-time salaried staff member and three salaried staff who work less than 40 hours a week. [Back to top]

    Do ACCTS staff minister full-time?
    Some staff minister full-time, while others volunteer on a part-time basis. Some have part-time jobs in addition to their work with ACCTS, and many are also involved in their churches and other ministries. [Back to top]

    What do ACCTS staff members do on mission trips?
    Mission trips enable our staff members to develop strong, long-term personal relationships with international military Christians, to mentor and disciple them, and to better understand the personal challenges they face in their lives and careers so that we can prayerfully support them better.

    Staff members are often asked to help plan military Christian fellowship events, and they frequently speak at MCF conferences and training events. They help military Christians who are developing a military Christian fellowship and have assist MCFs and officials involved in chaplain training. [Back to top]

    Why do both spouses often travel together on mission trips?
    ACCTS’ married staff members often travel and minister together so that they can better reach the entire military society – serving members, spouses, and children. In many cultures it is inappropriate for a male to share Christ with a female, and vice versa. Traveling together alleviates this problem and opens more doors for sharing. This ministry approach is modeled after Jesus’ method of sending out his disciples two-by-two. [Back to top]

    What is the AMCF, and what is ACCTS’ relationship to it?
    The Association of Military Christian Fellowships (AMCF) is an association of indigenous military Christian fellowships (MCFs) from more than 150 countries. AMCF’s leadership is composed of retired officers from more than a dozen countries in every region of the world. Because the AMCF leadership does not have a budget, staff, or office, ACCTS, along with two other Principal Supporting Organizations (PSOs), supports the AMCF leadership in its global ministry work. [Back to top]

    What are Principal Supporting Organizations?
    There are three Principal Supporting Organizations (PSOs) that undergird the work of the AMCF. In addition to U.S.-based ACCTS, Military Ministries International (MMI) is based in the U.K., and the Mission Support Organization (MSO) is based in South Korea. Collectively, the three PSOs support the AMCF with prayer, staff assistance, and resources. They also conduct direct ministry in support of military Christians, military Christian fellowships, and chaplaincies around the world. The three PSOs coordinate and frequently collaborate on ministry projects, and our staffs routinely work together on conferences, training, service, and ministry activities. [Back to top]

    What is ACCTS’ relationship to Officers’ Christian Fellowship (OCF)?
    OCF is a U.S.-based military Christian fellowship.  Cleo Buxton, the first executive director of OCF, stepped down from that position in 1972 to found ACCTS in order to share with other countries the concept of military Christians changing their countries from the inside through their professional excellence, personal character, and testimony of faith.  Since then, ACCTS has maintained a close relationship with OCF and has often partnered together in some of its ministry efforts. [Back to top]

    What other organizations does ACCTS partner in ministry with?
    ACCTS works jointly with several other ministries, such as:

    • Organizations in the Fellowship of Christian Military Ministries -- a commitment to work together
    • CRU International Military Ministries – working with international military students studying in the U.S., chaplain training, work in Africa, and building a ministry clearinghouse
    • International Association of Evangelical Chaplains -- international chaplaincy ministry
    • Olive Branch -- partnering directly in ministry
    • Faith Comes By Hearing – Audio Bible distribution
    • Olive Branch International -- partnering directly in language camps and other ministry
    • National Association of Evangelicals, Chaplains Commission--chaplain cooperation
    • …and military Christian fellowships around the world. [Back to top]

    How Can I Support ACCTS’ Military Ministry?

    1. Pray for us: First, pray for us and for military believers around the world! You can join our weekly emailed prayer bulletin and/or sign up to receive our monthly newsletter by email or mail. Message us at accts@accts.org to let us know you’d like to receive one or both of these.
    2. Donate financially: Leadership programs such as Chaplains Interaction and the numerous other ways we minister internationally cost money, and we are only able to carry them out because of individual Christians who believe in our work and support it financially. You can donate via check or electronic transfer, or you can donate by credit card online at our website: www.accts.org. You can also donate by transferring stocks, and by mutual funds (you might have stock that has appreciated in value; if so, you can give directly to ACCTS and avoid capital gains tax on that stock).
    3. Join us: Volunteers are sometimes needed for our English Language Training programs and other ministry activities. There are numerous opportunities to accompany and minister with our staff when they travel overseas. Let us know if you are interested in these opportunities as well by emailing accts@accts.org. [Back to top]

    What impact has ACCTS had on military Christians around the world?
    Anything of eternal value that has been accomplished was done by God who simply gave us the privilege of being used for part of the work He is doing in the world and in individual hearts. Discipling relationships and other ministry activities change the way people behave and impact the world in both seemingly large ways and by transforming the lives of individual military men and women and their families. This is reflected in the stories of people with whom God has blessed us to work.

    • Several years ago, the president of a Latin American country (Honduras) decided that he wanted to become president for life over the strong opposition of the country’s legislature and courts. Tens of thousands of his supporters flooded the streets of the capital and were met by tens of thousands who supported the government. ACCTS had long-term relationships with the heads of the army, navy, air force, and military, who were all members of the country’s military Christian fellowship. When the military was called on to intervene, they met together to pray about what they should do as they conferred together. Resisting pressure to take over, they prayerfully maneuvered around many bad options and, by grace, managed to preserve the constitution. The country remains a democracy today.
    • ACCTS brings young upcoming Christian military leaders to the U.S. for a two week outdoor leadership training program where they learn ways to integrate their faith into their military careers, to strive for professional excellence, to bear witness of their faith in their lives, and to start and build military Christian fellowships in their home nations. One of the cadets from an Eastern European country (Bulgaria) returned home and lived out his faith so boldly that he was appointed as an unofficial chaplain for a unit going to Afghanistan. The formerly-atheistic government sent a shipping container with him, which was used as a chapel during the deployment.
    • A young military Christian in a South Asian country (Bangladesh) lives in a village where he says he is the only Christian and can’t practice his faith openly. Once a month, he and his wife drive five hours over doubtful roads to meet with the other members of the military Christian fellowship for a few hours, and they turn around and returns home. The benefits of fellowship with other believers is worth the long and dangerous drive.
    • A young warrant officer in a South African country (Swaziland) attended an AMCF conference and was inspired to start an MCF back in her home country. Within five years, it grew from nothing to over 1,000 members. Today, one out of five members of the nation’s military are members of the MCF.
    • A captain in one West African country’s MCF was told to assassinate a judge who was interfering with a senior officer’s illegal “business.” When he refused, he was shot. A second young officer, also in the MCF, refused even after being threatened with death. Fortunately, he had practiced such servant leadership that the leader of the firing squad refused to shoot him and the senior officer backed down, sparing both the captain’s life and the life of the judge.
    • One soldier from an Eastern European country became a Christian through other military Christians and began reading his Bible. He became convicted about a practice at the jail where he worked. The guards used to regularly beat the prisoners for no reason. When he refused to beat the prisoners, the other guards noticed and, over time, they all stopped. He reported back what God had done by writing, “We stopped beating the prisoners.” Not world-shaking news, but certainly significant to the prisoners who were no longer being beaten.
    • At the end of one conference with Mideast countries, a high-ranking Egyptian military man, speaking to an Israeli officer, remarked, “All of my life I have been taught to hate you and your people, but now that I see you as a brother in Christ, I can never again look on you or your country the same.”
    • At a different Mideast conference, there was an Israeli officer and a member of the Palestinian police force holding a Bible study in one corner of the room, animatedly discussing a biblical passage. ACCTS’ director was standing with another Israeli officer and a high-ranking Egyptian officer and the Israeli remarked, “The situation in our region is so complex, that no human mind has devised a solution that doesn’t make some other part of the problem worse. Of course, Jesus has the wisdom to fix that, but until He comes…” pointing to the Palestinian and Israeli officer in the corner – “… that is our only hope.”
    • We’ve seen Israelis and Arabs, Russians and Ukrainians, and other military members whose countries have been at war with each other brought together in fellowship in Christ. The bonds of faith can overcome any obstacle.

    Even where there are no spectacular results, discipling, equipping, encouraging, and bringing together military men and women changes the eternal destinies of those who turn to Christ, and in the process, often changes the temporal state of hostility as it brings together former and current enemies into forgiveness, fellowship, and unity in Christ. [Back to top]


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