Our origins as CNEC
The WorldShare story is the result of several people’s God-given vision.
Duncan McRoberts, a British missionary to China, saw how effective teams of Chinese evangelists could be in reaching their own people. Together with Fred and Geraldine Savage, he began to raise support for Chinese Christian workers. In the turmoil of 1942, with the Japanese invading China, they determined to seek wider support. With the help of Christian businessmen in Seattle, they raised enough money to support one of China’s foremost young evangelists, Calvin Chao. This radical idea of partnering with national believers gave birth to the China Native Evangelistic Crusade, or CNEC, as we became known. There was nothing like it at the time. And in 1943 a new radical era of mission strategy was born.
In 1946 Rev and Mrs Savage visited the USA, England and Australia, as a result of which offices were later opened in the UK (1946), Australia (1953), Canada (1960) and Japan (1984). By 1949 CNEC was sponsoring 150 workers and had helped to start two Bible Colleges, a seminary and a student ministry. The advance of the Communist army in the same year created a tidal wave of refugees that spilled across Southeast Asia. CNEC began assisting Chinese believers in Hong Kong, Singapore and other parts of Southeast Asia who were ministering among these displaced people.
Miss Doris Lum, a young Chinese Australian, born in South Australia, served in China as a CNEC worker in 1943, having graduated from Hong Kong Bible College. She was supported by a group of Sydney Bible classes led by Miss F.M. (Margaret) Cook who later became President of the Australian Council of CNEC. It was through Doris’s advocacy that a CNEC committee was formed in South Australia.
In 1967, it was decided to open a central office in Sydney and Mrs Glad Barr took on the role of Australian representative.
Over the years, CNEC came to stand for ‘Christian Nationals Evangelical Council’ as our work began to expand beyond China, throughout Africa, South East Asia and the Middle East.
From 1 March 2012 our name was changed to WorldShare. Renaming our organisation enabled us to more effectively engage with partners and supporters and provide better alignment with our overseas counterparts.
Over the course of time, there has been great variety in the nature of the work done by WorldShare ministry partners, and an evolution in the way in which WorldShare carries out its work. However, WorldShare has consistently supported and empowered local Christians in developing countries to share the love of God with their people and transform lives.
Our story could not have been written without the extraordinary good will and generosity of Christians all around Australia. A strong spirit of volunteerism has permeated our organisation from its beginnings and continues to this day. We invite you to support our partners, and enable them to continue writing the story of transformation in the lives of people around the world.