Northwester Ministries is a non-profit organization committed to reclaiming fathers and sons for Christ through a correct understanding of biblical theology, hands-on experience in nature, craftsmanship, and the outdoors.
At the core of the vision is brotherhood but this naturally includes women and families (1 Cor. 11:11). The project is meant to enable and mobilize men of faith especially to be a part of something bigger than themselves. In the process, they will learn a forgotten principle that accomplishing impossible tasks is possible only when we work together. Behold, how good and how pleasant it is when brothers live and work in harmony! (Psa. 133:1).
We want to pioneer a community campus with a guild, congregation, refuge, and folk school aimed at helping men and women rediscover themselves in light of nature. Think of a bible school based on an artisan, agrarian, and outdoor themes. Right now, courses in old-fashioned folk craft such as timber-framing, smithing, leather-work, knife-making, bow making, and pretty much anything involving making things with your hands are booking out everywhere around the country (and world). Even folk dancing is back in vogue. In our virtual-reality world of artificial intelligence a yearning for the real and authentic is growing to epidemic proportions while suicide rates sky-rocket among men, women, and even kids. They don’t know that there is hope, and they need to see and understand the hope. It’s not about the craft but about a very simple philosophy—real community happens when we work together face to face and not through machines.
Two regions have been identified that could provide an ideal location as it relates to northwestern cities. With a refuge and equipped congregation our mission will be to serve churches, groups, and leaders near and far with hospitality and an environment that restores the soul. The refuge and ranch will provide a place for everyone to retreat from the steel and concrete cages of the city, reconnect with nature, one another, and enjoy God’s own handiwork in nature.
The Course – Vir sapiens et fortis est
The motto is from Proverbs 24:5, “Vir sapiens et fortis est“ — a wise man has great power. Where most schools teach only knowledge and offer countless kinds of classes, we want to teach wisdom and understanding and offer only one course. Understanding the Word is no walk in the park. It requires rigorous study, the Spirit, and guidance. Our teachers believe in this. Men of all backgrounds will be discipled through the Word not in a flourescent-lit classroom but around a fire, under the stars, in the woods, and in the field, just as Jesus did with his own disciples. Reduce overhead, reduce costs. Men will grow in the knowledge and ways of Christ, the ancient Hebrew worldview, virtue, discipline, endurance, brotherhood, leadership, hard work, suffering, and self-sacrifice. They will see who they are—sons of Light. The course takes each group through the entire Bible together. It is an intensive, group oriented mission that leads every man to document for themselves the precepts, commands, instructions, laws, images, parables, and revelations of the Spirit from Genesis to Revelation. It will be spread out over one year on weekends or through intensive two week sessions. They will discover just how everything comes together into one cohesive word to the man, Jesus Christ, the true image, the firstborn, the forerunner, the second man.
The Guild – Perpetuus provisionem
All men should learn to build and become skillful at some handiwork that benefits the community. Men are not happiest when they are stuck living in an abstract world punching the air or traversing through virtual realities. They are happiest when they pick up the pick-axe and lay it to the dirt and sweat for God’s glory. They are happiest when they can see the objective fruit of their labors. The Guild is a fellowship of skilled craftsmen, masters, and apprentices in all sorts of disciplines. Its motto is perpetuus provisionem, which is Latin for unceasing foresight, preparation, and prevention, first to the family of faith, but also to the world beyond.
Therefore, as we have opportunity, we must work for the good of all, especially for those who belong to the household of faith. (Galatians 6:10 HCSB)
We must do the works of Him who sent Me while it is Day. Night is coming when no one can work. (John 9:4 HCSB)
The Folk School – operemini manibus vestris
But we urge you, brothers, to excel more and more and to aspire to live quietly, to attend to your own matters, and to work with your own hands, as we instructed you. (1 Thessalonians 4:10-11 BSB)
Do you see a man skillful in his work? He will stand before kings. (Proverbs 22:29)
She selects wool and flax, and works with eager hands…Honor her for all that her hands have done. (Proverbs 31:13,31)
There is a deep, forgotten knowledge of God revealed in the design of our hands. The motto here is operemini manibus vestris, work with your hands. They were not made for swiping or punching buttons. Rediscover them. Various shops will provide opportunity to explore the world of handiwork to everyone—men, women, and kids. Nothing brings people together like raw handiwork. Hands-on courses in everything from timber-frame construction, knife-making, and smithing to quilting, weaving, and artisan cooking will teach about the joy and peace of using our hands, fellowship, and making things from scratch. A store and auctions will sell finely crafted and prepared Northwester-branded goods with proceeds benefiting people in need, youth-at-risk, and scholarships for the poor. Be fruitful.