Mission (Christianity)

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Aron of Kangeq, a painter and missionary in Greenland, in the 19th century

Christian churches often send individuals, or small groups of people to a foreign country. These people should then convince the local population to convert to the Christian faith. Very often, this couples evangelisation with humanitarian work. As well, the missionaries are priests, and can administer sacraments, but sometimes they are laypeople. Today, missionary activity often means cooperating with the local church. As an example, the Evangelical-Lutheran Church in Tanzania has sent missionaries to Mozambique.

Missionary work is often criticized for the ways used. Examples are forced baptisms, proselytism, and that during colonial times, there were strong ties between colonialism and missionary work. Sometimes, there is the problem that the moral standards of the societies are very different from the moral standards of Christianity, missionary work will force different standards onto indigenous societies.