A general perception people have about charity is to assist the poor by providing financial aid. However, people do not realize that charity is much more than providing financial support to the poor or feeding the needy on religious holidays. The world must understand that charity is more than just ‘almsgiving.’ It is about strengthening societies, and it is a way through which communities can prosper. Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome Trust, and other well-reputed charitable foundations do help the people in need. These foundations do not work to eliminate the root of the social issues and provide temporary solutions to societal problems.
What the world needs is a comprehensive solution. It is crucial to reach the core of the problems and cut down the source. Besides offering weak communities monetary support, the charitable foundations need to work on holistic community development. To build a strong community and prepare it for a prosperous journey, there is a need to address all aspects that are necessary for establishing a stable community. These are not just confined to social, physical, or economic, aspects but also involve emotional and spiritual aspects. There is a man who realizes the importance of holistic community development. Reverend Miguel Torneire, the Pastor from Brazil, knows how crucial it is for charitable and non-profit organizations to adopt a holistic approach towards the development of weak communities.
The 41-year-old Pastor Miguel established his non-profit organization, Developing Our World on May 23 2018. Moreover, Miguel co-founded GELNet with Reverend Doctor Johnson Rethinasamy and Reverend Sean Chapman. GELNet stands for Global Evangelical Leadership Network, which is a think-tank and hands-on mission plating networking platform for mission leaders and church planters. It is an alternative space for local congregations looking to engage, encourage, equip and partner with indigenous leaders and churches around the world. He is an advocate of holistic community development, and he is helping communities in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Argentina, Colombia, Brazil, Bangladesh, Malawi, and other weak communities. His efforts to bring change around the world by empowering underprivileged people have made his foundation become one of the world’s most notable charities.
Developing Our World – A Non-Profit Organization That Stands For The Ones Struggling
Developing Our World is a non-profit organization that was initially set up in Missouri and is now serving as a global-scale charitable foundation. From Guatemala in Central America to Brumadinho in Brazil, the organization is tirelessly working to improve the lives of underprivileged people. Miguel Torneire leads visits to rural parts of the world to offer the deprived people an opportunity to live a better life. The foundation operates on the concept of “holistic community development.”
Miguel Torneire is a firm believer that to strengthen a community and improve the living conditions of people of a town, the world needs to adopt a holistic approach. Holistic community development is a collaborative and creative process that helps in addressing all elements that are necessary for a community to thrive. Developing Our World is an organization that works to create a space for dialogue. It assists communities to re-narrate their story by asking critical questions. Through this holistic approach, Miguel Torneire expects to create a new, equitable, just, and sustainable vision of the community’s future.
According to the mission statement of the organization, holistic community development begins from a grassroots level and works on a bottom-up approach. It focuses on creating a safe environment that is built upon a foundation of trust and respect among people of different cultures. It brings people in a community together to challenge the status quo.
The working mechanism of this organization is to empower the community members and train them to take their village, town, or city out of the ‘dark age.’ Apart from providing monetary donation funds to rural and underprivileged parts of the world, the organization encourages people to step into “service to the community.” It is the first step towards bringing change. The attempt of this organization extends much further than providing financial help to weak and poor communities. With its holistic community development approach, it addresses the root causes of problems. It trains the people (outsiders and insiders) and provides them with academic opportunities to improve the lives of their fellow members by taking up leadership roles.
The primary purpose of this organization is to bring people together to strengthen the community for its well-being. The organization launches programs/processes of different natures that can help a community gain a stable ground. It offers scholarship programs for students and trains leaders within a community. It works to empower the people residing in weak communities and encourage them to perform better in life.
Stepping into Service to Community
Miguel Torneire is a Lutheran pastor, missionary, a father, husband, and also serves as the Executive Director of Developing Our World. He established his non-profit organization on the foundation of holistic community development. He stepped into service to the community and developed an interest in the Christian faith and religion while he was living with his grandparents; Arthur Schulz Sobrinho and Argentina Eller Schulz.
Born on February 17, 1979, in Nilópolis, a city in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and baptized on April 29, 1979, at the Igreja Evangélica Luterana Cristo Rei in Itaguaí. Baptism was his initiation into the family of Christ. He used to live with his parents and brother. In the year 1982, when Miguel was two years old his mother, Eugenia Schulz Torneire died of appendicitis after which his father started another family. Miguel’s father, uncles, and aunts decided to support Arthur Schulz Sobrinho, and Argentina Eller Schulz to raise and take care of Miguel and his brother André as Miguel’s grandparents were dedicated Christians, devoted to their Lord, and passionate about serving the poor and their neighbor. Growing up with Christian values and teachings in the Bible inspired Miguel to step into community service.
His Confirmation of faith took place on December 26, 1993, in the same church he was baptized in. Miguel went to the Instituto Concórdia de São Paulo – ICSP to begin his Bachelor’s in Divinity in 1997 and two other seminaries including Seminario Concordia Buenos Aires in 1999 and Seminário Concórdia de São Leopoldo in 2003. He graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Divinity on December 6, 2003, and with specialized skills in Evangelism and service to the community. The ICSP seminary’s forte and focus were in missions which helped him go deeper into the mission theme from a practical standpoint. It helped Miguel acquire the essential skills that helped him with his vision at Developing Our World.
Taking Community Service a Step Further
In the same year Miguel completed his first Bachelor’s in Divinity, he went to Universidad Luterana do Brazil (ULBRA) to get his second Bachelors’ in Theology. A year after entering ULBRA, Miguel was ordained on April 25, 2004, and became a part of church leaders. He went to Guatemala in the same year and took up the position of Lead Pastor at Iglesias Evangélica Luterana El Divino Salvador, Zacapa. In the four years, he spent in Guatemala as the lead pastor, he visited prisons and designed a campaign for feeding the hungry, equipped leaders for missions and serve the community. He was able to serve as a resident missionary while working with short-term teams from Central American Lutheran Mission Society – CALMS and other organizations with members of the congregation to teach Vacation Bible School and build homes for families of the community. Miguel worked with CALMS to do strategic and missional work in the Zacapa. Some of his works included Biblical Equipping and building homes for poor people. He also joined the CALMS team in Belize where he went on a Mission Trip with members of his congregation.
When he was invited to CALMS, he took up the position of the Missionary-at-Large and Director for Central America at CALMS and got a chance to work under Reverend Doctor Steve Hughey. He is Miguel’s mentor as he helped him shape his philosophy in missions, especially about holistic community development.
Pastoral Experience of Reverend Miguel Torneire
Miguel was a member of Igreja Evangélica Luterana Cristo Rei in Itaguaí, Brazil from April 1979 to February 1994. He was baptized and confirmed in the same church. For four years, from 1994 to 1998, Miguel was a member Congregação Evangélica Luterana Ebenézer in São Paulo and then joined again in 2001. The next year he became a member of the Comunidade Evangélica Luterana Concórdia in São Leopoldo, where he did his vicariate. Miguel spent two years in Argentina, from 1999 to 2001. There he was a member of Iglesia Evangélica Luterana La Concórdia for two years starting from 1999 and then joined Parroquia Emanuel in Hipólito Yrigoyen in December 2000. During his time in the Argentinian churches, he did his pre-vicariate. When he returned to Brazil in 2001, he did another pre-vicariate at Ebenézer.
In the year 2011, Miguel went to Concordia University in St. Paul to complete his Master of Arts in Christian Outreach. In April 2012, he took up the position of Assistant Pastor at Gethsemane Church in Tempe, AZ, where he is a pastor to date. At present, Miguel serves as the Vacancy Pastor at Trinity Lutheran Church in Centralia, IL.
Developing Our World’s entire efforts revolve around the concept of service to the community, which is an integral part of holistic community development. Miguel Torneire, the executive director of the organization, stepped into community service when he was living with his grandparents. Since then, he has strengthened his views through education and practice. He is a husband, father, a pastor, and missionary, a blogger, a writer, and he also smoothly runs the operations of Developing Our World across all third world countries in the world.