In October, CCI held its third Global Conference with more than 85 attendees representing 14 different nations.

Crossing Cultures International (CCI) is a local nonprofit organization that seeks to glorify God by equipping and training pastors and church leaders globally for effective ministry. Although headquartered in Brandon, the organization lives up to its name with a presence in 37 countries.

CCI’s goal is to produce mature, Christlike leaders who can make mature disciples of Jesus Christ, as they pastor a church, lead a ministry or go wherever God has called them. To do this, CCI provides affordable and comprehensive training to pastors and church leaders through a relational discipleship training method.

Dr. David Nelson, president of CCI, founded the organization after spending more than a decade as a church planter on the island of Bohol in the Philippines. Although CCI didn’t officially become incorporated until 2006, the Lord was orchestrating all the parts and people long before.

While in the Philippines during the late 80s, Dr. Nelson began teaching three men about Jesus using an apprenticeship model—a practice also common in the Philippines. Like Jesus’ relationship with His disciples, Dr. Nelson spent time with these men, teaching them how to correctly handle the Word of God.

“It costs about $5,000 a month to send a missionary to the Philippines,” explained Dr. Nelson. “But to train a pastor or church leader that lives there, it costs $10 a month for three years to train a leader who is already in the culture.”

He continued, “We bring the training to where the people live so they can be trained and equipped to serve the Lord in the local church or go out and start new churches.”

In October 2019, CCI ‘went home’ to hold its third Global Conference on the island of Bohol. National directors, area coordinators, pastors, spouses and staff from 14 different nations attended to worship, pray, hear testimonies, encourage one another and plan for the future.

Henry Ventura, the CCI national director in the Philippines, attended the conference and said, “I learned how to interpret the Bible correctly, and that changed my whole life.”

Today, by the grace of God, CCI is equipping pastors and church leaders in 570 classes with 6,344 participants. More than 8,000 students have graduated from 37 different countries.

For more information or to donate, visit or call 217-5077.

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Amanda Boston
Amanda Boston is the Christian Voice Editor for the Osprey Observer. She is a graduate of Bible Training for Church Leaders (BTCL), who enjoys sharing how God is working in and through the community. Amanda resides in FishHawk with her husband and two children.