World Mission Prayer League (WMPL)

The information in this column was provided to MinistryWatch by the ministry itself. It was last updated 12/9/2020. To update the information in this column, please email:


The World Mission Prayer League, Inc. ("WMPL") is an independent Lutheran missionary community and provides international, cross-cultural ministry opportunities to men, women, lay people, clergy, and people in all walks of life. At last count, they field 100 missionaries in 20 countries. Standing behind their missionary force are 6,000+ individuals who have committed themselves to pray. You are invited to become a 'praying member' yourself at and if you know a Lutheran who is hearing a missionary call please invite them to visit and learn more.

Contact information

Mailing address:
232 Clifton Ave.
Minneapolis, MN 55403-3497


Phone: (612) 871-6843


Organization details

EIN: 410786986

CEO/President: Paul Gossman

Chairman: Drew Bayless

Board size: 10

Founder: Lutheran Church Members

Ruling year: 1937

Tax deductible: Yes

Fiscal year end: 12/31

Member of ECFA: Yes

Member of ECFA since: 1987


WMPL is committed to the frontier and reaching those not yet reached. Workers are the Lord's hands, feet, and mouthpiece in difficult places. They are giving the very best of what they have to mountain hamlets...on steamy coasts...on dusty plains. They have positioned themselves at the very crossroads of faith and unbelief so that the lost might become found.

Mission statement

World Mission Prayer League uses the following to express its mission:

Our Mission

We are a Lutheran community committed to:

  1. know Christ;
  2. pray for the advance of His kingdom;
  3. share the Gospel and ourselves with those who do not know Him; and,
  4. encourage Christians everywhere in this global task.
Our Vision

We are a Lutheran community...

We are a Lutheran community in mission.
  1. We undertake our mission as Lutherans. We proceed from a variety of Lutheran synodical backgrounds, in which we participate gladly.
  2. We undertake our mission as a community: lay and ordained, male and female, multi-generational and multi-ethnic. Our members are variously and wonder-fully gifted for the task we share together. We appreciate their multi-textured gifts, and work at encouraging one another in their exercise, for the cause of Christ.
Moreover, we understand our fellowship to be part of a much larger body - the Church of Jesus Christ around the world. Wherever possible, we will advocate interrelationship, interdependence, and creative partnership in the cause of the Gospel around the world.

...committed to know Christ
  • We are committed to the Person and the Cause of Jesus. We believe that committed lives are indispen-sable for authentic and compelling witness.
  • We intend to call others to commitment as well. We intend to plead with all of our creative energy, "Be reconciled to Christ," as ambassadors of God himself.
  • We understand that this commitment exacts a cost - and we purpose to bear it, by the grace of God. We will ready ourselves for suffering. We will turn away from costly comforts, a larger income, material possessions, and places of personal privilege or honor. We will choose instead to embrace the way of poverty, loss, suffering, and humiliation - whatever it takes to bring the Gospel of Jesus to as many people as possible.
...committed to pray for the advance of his kingdom
  • We are committed to pray, as Jesus commands his followers in Matthew 9:38 - "Ask the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest."
  • We are not, primarily, a missionary sending organization. We are fundamentally a praying "league", a community of men and women who are committed to prayer as a key methodology for advancing the Gospel of Christ. Prayer is the "working method" of our mission.
  • Since God gives our resources, we will not solicit human beings. We envision mutual accountability as we hold one another to this common commitment.
  • Since God gives our resources, we will continue to treat them "as from the hand of God" - honoring financial designations explicitly. We will treat our personnel "as from the hand of God" as well - respecting insofar as possible each individual calling within our overall work and fellowship.
...committed to share the gospel and ourselves with those who do not know him
  • We declare our passion for the evangelization of the world. We will share the gospel. And our sharing will involve more than our words. We propose sharing "ourselves" - that is, our material goods, our money, our service, our very lives.
  • We will focus our sharing in three areas: disciple-making along the frontiers that surround us; leadership development in service to the emerging church; and, mission mobilization.
  • Disciple-making along the frontiers. We will remain prayerfully alert to the frontiers that surround us today, and the new frontiers that may beckon us tomorrow. We will apply our prayers and resources, in particular, along the frontier of the unreached - those peoples among whom an indigenous, missionizing, church-planting movement has yet to be established. We will apply ourselves further, as much as possible, along the frontier of limited access - unreached peoples among whom few missionaries are at work, or traditional missionaries cannot go.
  • Leadership development. We believe that God has equipped the church with everything needful for its basic ministries of proclamation, service and administration. We believe that God equips the church, as well, with the leadership necessary for its life and ministry. We will not, therefore, lead churches where local leaders are available. Rather, we will encourage the church to take up its calling. We will pray and work to encourage and develop its leadership in every way.
  • Mission mobilization. We will work toward an indigenous, missionizing, church-planting movement, wherever God has led us. We will work under the structures of the church as it exists in hopeful partnership, that the church may be planted where it has not yet advanced.
...committed to encourage Christians everywhere in this global task
  • We applaud evidences of God's mission from and to the entire world. We believe that the mission of God belongs to the whole people of God. We will encourage Christians everywhere in its pursuit.
  • As for ourselves and our work, we intend to be mobile. We pledge ourselves to expendability. We will not ensconce our persons or our organization perma-nently in any of our areas of work. We understand ourselves as scaffolding; but when a building is completed, the scaffolding must be removed. In all of our work, we will plan for our own dismantling, in order to help build up the church in another area.

Statement of faith

The World Mission Prayer League uses the following to express its Statement of Faith:

We believe in...

  1. The only true God, the almighty Creator of all things, existing eternally in three persons - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit - full of love and glory.
  2. The unique divine inspiration, entire trustworthiness and authority of the Bible, our infallible guide and inerrant norm for doctrine and living.
  3. The value and dignity of all people: created in God's image to live in love and holiness, but alienated from God and each other because of their sin and guilt, justly subject to God's wrath and unable to save themselves.
  4. Jesus Christ, fully human and fully divine, who lived as a perfect example, who assumed the judgment due sinners by dying in our place, and who was bodily raised from the dead and ascended as Savior and Lord.
  5. The means of grace - principally the Bible and the Sacraments of Baptism and the Lord's Supper - by which God shares with us the good news of the wonderful salvation that can be ours in Jesus Christ.
  6. Justification by God's grace - complete access to God's every gift and benefit - for all who repent and put their faith in Jesus Christ alone for salvation.
  7. The indwelling presence and transforming power of the Holy Spirit, who gives to all believers a new life and the spiritual gifts necessary for a calling to obedient service.
  8. The unity of all believers in Jesus Christ, manifest in worshipping and witnessing churches making disciples throughout the world.
  9. The future personal return of Jesus Christ, who will judge all people with justice and mercy, giving over the unrepentant to eternal con-demna-tion but receiving the redeemed into eternal life.
  10. We further believe that...
    The historic creeds of the church - the Apostolic, the Nicene, and the Athanasian - and the historic confessions of the Lutheran Church - particularly the Small Catechism

Transparency grade


To understand our transparency grade, click here.

Financial efficiency ratings

Sector: Foreign Missions

CategoryRatingOverall rankSector rank
Overall efficiency rating437 of 99956 of 118
Fund acquisition rating115 of 100117 of 118
Resource allocation rating381 of 100150 of 118
Asset utilization rating897 of 999107 of 118

Financial ratios

Funding ratiosSector median20192018201720162015
Return on fundraising efforts Return on fundraising efforts =
Fundraising expense /
Total contributions
Fundraising cost ratio Fundraising cost ratio =
Fundraising expense /
Total revenue
Contributions reliance Contributions reliance =
Total contributions /
Total revenue
Fundraising expense ratio Fundraising expense ratio =
Fundraising expense /
Total expenses
Other revenue reliance Other revenue reliance =
Total other revenue /
Total revenue
Operating ratiosSector median20192018201720162015
Program expense ratio Program expense ratio =
Program services /
Total expenses
Spending ratio Spending ratio =
Total expenses /
Total revenue
Program output ratio Program output ratio =
Program services /
Total revenue
Savings ratio Savings ratio =
Surplus (deficit) /
Total revenue
Reserve accumulation rate Reserve accumulation rate =
Surplus (deficit) /
Net assets
General and admin ratio General and admin ratio =
Management and general expense /
Total expenses
Investing ratiosSector median20192018201720162015
Total asset turnover Total asset turnover =
Total expenses /
Total assets
Degree of long-term investment Degree of long-term investment =
Total assets /
Total current assets
Current asset turnover Current asset turnover =
Total expenses /
Total current assets
Liquidity ratiosSector median20192018201720162015
Current ratio Current ratio =
Total current assets /
Total current liabilities
Current liabilities ratio Current liabilities ratio =
Total current liabilities /
Total current assets
Liquid reserve level Liquid reserve level =
(Total current assets -
Total current liabilities) /
(Total expenses / 12)
Solvency ratiosSector median20192018201720162015
Liabilities ratio Liabilities ratio =
Total liabilities /
Total assets
Debt ratio Debt ratio =
Debt /
Total assets
Reserve coverage ratio Reserve coverage ratio =
Net assets /
Total expenses


Balance sheet
Receivables, inventories, prepaids$81,169$72,980$66,062$48,284$80,212
Short-term investments$2,244,356$1,243,072$1,401,506$1,471,482$1,457,463
Other current assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total current assets$2,930,818$2,430,651$2,132,496$2,332,461$1,997,211
Long-term investments$250,564$211,541$225,893$208,981$204,563
Fixed assets$3,068,347$3,133,029$3,217,830$3,230,808$3,481,322
Other long-term assets$484,177$478,119$530,817$510,889$546,909
Total long-term assets$3,803,088$3,822,689$3,974,540$3,950,678$4,232,794
Total assets$6,733,906$6,253,340$6,107,036$6,283,139$6,230,005
Payables and accrued expenses$20,572$18,281$287,972$33,775$39,252
Other current liabilities$25,243$24,706$26,904$26,571$24,796
Total current liabilities$45,815$42,987$314,876$60,346$64,048
Due to (from) affiliates$0$0$2,930$2,065$4,119
Other long-term liabilities$205,190$206,196$242,335$235,116$296,906
Total long-term liabilities$205,190$206,196$245,265$237,181$301,025
Total liabilities$251,005$249,183$560,141$297,527$365,073
Net assets20192018201720162015
Without donor restrictions$6,398,002$5,925,521$5,456,458$5,902,626$5,802,565
With donor restrictions$84,899$78,636$90,437$82,986$62,367
Net assets$6,482,901$6,004,157$5,546,895$5,985,612$5,864,932
Revenues and expenses
Total contributions$3,054,285$3,460,621$3,316,148$3,637,786$3,130,862
Program service revenue$0$0$0$0$0
Membership dues$0$0$0$0$0
Investment income$219,943($56,522)$138,504$167,176($63,153)
Other revenue$37,941($5,409)$2,723$29,973$2,927
Total other revenue$257,884($61,931)$141,227$197,149($60,226)
Total revenue$3,312,169$3,398,690$3,457,375$3,834,935$3,070,636
Program services$2,415,178$2,558,907$3,400,953$3,279,153$3,174,491
Management and general$406,654$359,196$482,090$428,541$403,319
Total expenses$2,839,688$2,929,627$3,903,543$3,734,874$3,609,950
Change in net assets20192018201720162015
Surplus (deficit)$472,481$469,063($446,168)$100,061($539,314)
Other changes in net assets$6,263($11,801)$7,451$20,619$0
Total change in net assets$478,744$457,262($438,717)$120,680($539,314)


Compensation data for this ministry has not been collected.

Response from ministry

No response has been provided by this ministry.

The information below was provided to MinistryWatch by the ministry itself. It was last updated 12/9/2020. To update the information below, please email:


The World Mission Prayer League grew out of a God-given burden to pray for the unreached interiors of Africa, Asia, and Latin America. How could these peoples be saved, unless they heard the Gospel? How could they hear, unless the Gospel were preached? And how could the message be preached, unless someone were sent to preach it?

By the mid-1930s, a band of students, pastors and friends in the Minneapolis area joined together in prayer that the Lord of the harvest would send laborers into His harvest (Luke 10:2). Soon some of them felt called to join the harvest themselves.

Volunteers approached the foreign mission boards of the existing Lutheran synods, but found no budget for new outreach. In 1937 they organized themselves along simple lines to accept missionary volunteers and send them into areas of special concern. They were committed to finding a way to send and go in mission, without the constraint of budgetary limitations. They were committed to providing a way for lay participa-tion in mission, without the requirement of ordination. They were committed as well to complement the regular work of the Lutheran synods, without diverting means or personnel from their programs.

The Mission began as the South American Mission Prayer League, and was organized on May 25, l937. Its first two missionaries left the next year for Bolivia. Soon other volunteers were sent to Central Asia, and eventually to Africa, and Eastern Europe. In 1939 the Mission adopted its present name to reflect its growing involvements around the world: a prayer league of supporting friends with a world mission. In 1945, the World Mission Prayer League adopted its Constitution and incorporated in the State of Minnesota.

In 1969, the World Mission Prayer League/Canada adopted its Constitution and incorporated in Edmonton, Alberta. The World Mission Prayer League/Canada functions in partnership with the World Mission Prayer League/USA as a sister organization.

In 1972 the American Board of the Santal Mission merged with the World Mission Prayer League. The American Board was founded in Minneapolis in 1894, as the American partner of the Norwegian Board and the Danish Board of the same Mission. The World Mission Prayer League has inherited their particular concern for the Santal people of India and Bangladesh.

Together with the Church and its partners in mission, the World Mission Prayer League seeks to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit's fresh initiative in our world today. Prayer League members continue to pray that the Lord of the harvest would send forth workers, and that the Lord himself would sustain and uphold them.

Program accomplishments


Pray for Missionaries. Visit to receive 'Together In Prayer,' an 8-page, full-color, monthly newsletter chock full of late-breaking prayer requests from around the world. It is free of charge. Inquire to receive newsletters directly from specific missionaries.

Evaluate your lifestyle and priorities in the light of the world's urgent needs and the compelling commission of Christ and consider cross-cultural missionary service yourself. Over 30 service opportunities are listed at, and often include the following:

  • Evangelistic Church Planting
  • Mass Media: Radio, TV, Drama
  • Bible Translation
  • Medical - Hospital - Clinic
  • Teaching English as a Second Language
  • MK Education
  • Anti-Human Trafficking
  • Ethnomusicology
  • Business as Mission
  • Engineering
  • Primary and Secondary Education
  • Administration
  • Agricultural Consultancy