WORLD MISSIONARY ASSISTANCE PLAN • SPRING 2009
India: Nation of Destiny See Seminar Report Inside
There exists the very real need for a face-to-face encounter between the church leaders and those who are bringing the teaching. The team’s presence – a living “touchable” representation of God’s love and concern for the pastors – provides a dynamic that printed materials alone cannot.
2 • WORLD MAP DIGEST / Spring 2009
India, Nation of Destiny Powerful World MAP Seminars in India by Frank Parrish AS WE CONSIDER WHERE TO HOST WORLD MAP SPIRITUAL RENEWAL AND EQUIPPING SEMINARS FOR CHURCH LEADERS, there are countless options. Choose any point on the world map of developing nations, and you have found a place where there is a desperate need for biblical, Spirit-filled training for pastors. We also receive invitations from around the world, and are fully aware of the ever-expanding global cry from front-line leaders who desire help and training. World MAP already assists in meeting this demand by sending teaching materials into more than 140 nations. But beyond that, there
exists the very real need for a faceto-face encounter between the church leaders and those who are bringing the teaching. The team’s presence – a living “touchable” representation of God’s love and concern for the pastors – provides a dynamic that printed materials alone cannot. There is a dimension of fellowship, example and impartation that takes place only when we are there in person with the church leaders. Thus, it is important that we also conduct on-site seminars. But how do we decide where to bring the World MAP seminars? Our primary point of guidance is found in prayer and fasting – ask-
World MAP Vol. 49 • No. 2 / Spring 2009
Table of Contents India, Nation Of Destiny Powerful WMAP Seminars In India ..........2 Eradicating All Stumbling Blocks.............................................8 Gomoa Assin: Where Christ Is Being Acclaimed As Kings Of Kings ........9 Unreached People Group: The Bihari Of Fiji ...........................................12 Praying for the Nations: Nepal .................................................................13 Readers Respond: ‘A Meal For All’ ..............................................14
WORLD MAP BOARD OF DIRECTORS: Jon Cook, Skip Mahoney, Hank Morris, Frank Parrish, Vic Torres. WMAP CANADA BOARD OF DIRECTORS: Paul Dreher, Helmuth Lange, Dave McTaggart, Frank Parrish, Wendy Parrish, Horst Senkbeil, Alex Tingstad. DIGEST STAFF: Frank and Wendy Parrish .......................Directors / Editors Gayla Dease ...............Publications Coordinator Keith Balser .....................................Copy Editor VISION AND MISSION OF WORLD MAP World MAP (Missionary Assistance Plan) is a trans-denominational, nonprofit ministry dedicated to fulfilling the Great Commission – making disciples of all nations – by: • Equipping indigenous church leaders in Third-World nations through biblically-based, Spirit-filled teaching resources and practical ministry training so that they can be more effective, and in turn raise up and equip still more leaders (2Tim 2:2). • Sharing the triumphs and trials of these front-line ministers with believers in Western nations, to inspire the Body of Christ to fervently pray and sacrificially give, so that “this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world” (Matt 24:14). The Third-World church stands poised and ready to reach the nations with the Gospel, if they could just be equipped to do so. Thank you for partnering with World MAP to supply this urgent need! World MAP DIGEST is published quarterly by World Missionary Assistance Plan, whose editorial and business offices are at 1419 N. San Fernando Blvd., Burbank CA 91504. The subscription price is $5.00 per year. Receipts for contributions are tax-deductible. Periodicals postage paid at N. Hollywood, California 91605 and additional mailing offices (USPS 692240). Postmaster: Please send form 3579 to 1419 N. San Fernando Blvd., Burbank, California 91504. HOW TO CONTACT US: Visit us at our website on the Internet at www.world-map.com • Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org • Call us at 1-818-843-7233 • Fax us at 1-818-845-5000
ing, “Lord, where would You have us sow in this season”? Invariably, the Lord directs the World MAP teams to “work where He is working” – to go to places where He is beginning to do something fresh and sovereign in a people. We recognize that God has given us, in part, the role of “spiritual midwives” – coming alongside to coach and encourage those through whom God is about to birth a profound new work. God allows us to sow seeds of biblical training into the fertile ground which He is preparing, in order for a strong and effective harvest to take place. The nation of India is currently one of those spiritually fertile places. A CHALLENGED DESTINY I believe that God has a profound spiritual destiny and calling for the people of India. It is of such great significance that, at the very birth of the New Testament Church, God brought one of the first apostles all the way from Jerusalem to the Indian shores to sow the seeds of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Thomas was eventually martyred; but it was not before the message of the Kingdom had been preached throughout the south Indian continent. Unfortunately, our adversary the devil also understands the important dynamic of spiritual destiny. It has been his strategy through the centuries to attempt to disrupt God’s purposes for the people of India. A primary method was the preemptive counterfeit of false religions. Birthed in India were two of the world’s most prominent false religions – Hinduism and Buddhism. Other religious belief systems also founded in India include Sikhism and Jainism. There is even a very large Muslim population in India. The majority of the population of India is now bound in these false religions. Some of the core beliefs of these false religions have spread far beyond India’s borders, even influencing the West. These include:
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transcendental meditation; the “many pathways to God”; God as an impersonal “force” rather than a Person; “karma” and reincarnation; and other erroneous and non-biblical concepts of eastern mysticism made especially popular in the 1970s. These forms of deception are experiencing a resurgence today – even among Christians in the Church! These practices stem directly from religions which are dominant within Indian culture. You have likely heard them referred to in North America as “New Age” religion, even though there is nothing “new” about these age-old deceptions. Sadly, instead of the people of India influencing the world for Jesus Christ, many have been used as pawns in the strategies of hell to propagate spiritual deception. FAITHFUL REMNANT But the nation and peoples of India do not belong to the kingdom of darkness, and they still have a high calling and destiny to fulfill in God! For truly, they belong to the One Who purchased them with His own blood (Ps 2; Acts 17:24-31; Rev 5:9). Through the centuries, our faithful God has continued to plant the seeds of His salvation message, sending emissaries of His Gospel to bring fresh infusions of His life and truth to the people of India. These include such notables as: William
Carey (“The Father of Modern Missions”), who spent more than 30 years doing missionary work in India; Mother Teresa, who gave a lifetime of renowned Christ-like service to the lowliest castes; and thousands of other people and ministries that have sacrificially poured their time, talents and resource into the people of India. Throughout history, God has sustained a remnant in India who have kept and preserved the Gospel. They have done their best to be faithful to God’s only plan of salvation through Jesus Christ, even in the face of hell’s massive onslaught of counterfeits. And the centuries of faithfulness of those Christian workers is about to reap its reward!
JUST THE BEGINNING We fully believe this is India’s hour in the purposes of God. India has recently come to the global forefront in entertainment, technology, business, and even the economy. Yet as the doors of influence open, and the world watches India, an even greater phenomenon is occurring. Jesus is building His Church among the Indian people! It is estimated that more than 5,000 people a day in India are now coming to know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior – and as church leaders are equipped and taught to evangelize and plant churches, that number is growing exponentially. As exciting as this is, however, it is just the beginning of those who need to be reached with the Gospel,
since more than 50,000 people a day are born in India! This is indeed a vast harvest field, and we cannot allow ourselves to be intimidated by the challenge of reaching the 1.1 billion people who occupy that nation. We are kept ever mindful that with God, nothing is impossible! (Luke 1:37) The Lord of the Church is already raising up multiplied churches, leaders and ministries within the nation of India, many of whom are diligently and effectively reaching out with the Gospel. FRUITFUL EFFORTS It is into this exciting and eternity-shaping moment in India’s history that World MAP has been given an assignment to fulfill. We have already sown training materi-
als into the Church in India for many years. Our materials are produced in eight Indian languages (including English). With the help of IBL Ministries (India Bible Literature) and other partners, World MAP has distributed to church leaders in India more than 82,000 Shepherd’s Staffs (our handheld Bible school in a book) and more than 3 million ACTS equipping magazines! Our efforts to assist the church leaders in India have intensified in the last five years through hosting World MAP Spiritual Renewal and Equipping seminars. In these powerful events, we have witnessed thousands of leaders being filled with and freshly anointed by the Spirit of God; given encouragement through teaching, prayer and wor-
ship; and facilitated to evangelize their communities, their nation, and beyond! MOST-RECENT SEMINARS In February, World MAP again hosted seminars for church leaders. We intended to host three events on this trip, but felt it was prudent to cancel one seminar originally scheduled near Mumbai due to recent violent outbreaks there. However, we were still able to travel to two new locations, broadening World MAP’s reach to even more pastors in the country. The first seminar was held in Adoor, Kerala State, in the southwest part of India. The second took place in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh State, in central India. I was blessed to have the support of a strong teaching team that included Pastor Don Richter of Harvest Preparation International Ministries and Dr. Vic Torres of ReachOut Church (Vic is also a member of the World MAP Board of Directors). Both of these gentlemen have a rich ministry background and a call from the Lord to teach church leaders. They exemplify integrity and reflect the Father’s heart in their lives and ministries, and we are grateful to serve with them. The theme of the conferences was “Transformational Leadership” (Rom 8:28,29; 12:1,2), which Spring 2009 / WORLD MAP DIGEST • 5
emphasized the Christ-like character of the leader and the importance of having a biblical worldview (Phil 3:20,21). KERALA After more than 30 hours of travel from the U.S. – which included two airline flights, a commuter flight, and a drive of several hours in a small vehicle over rather rough terrain – we were at last in Adoor, Kerala. It was a joy to be so warmly greeted by more than 300 pastors who filled to capacity the small conference center we had secured. Throughout the conference one could sense the tangible presence of the Holy Spirit moving in our midst. The pastors were very receptive to the teachings and hungry to receive from the Lord. During one session, I taught on the anointing of the Holy Spirit, showing in Scripture the importance of disciples living and ministering by the Spirit’s power. At the conclusion of the teaching, I had planned on leading a ministry time to allow the leaders to worship and wait upon the Lord to receive. I had just asked them to stand to their feet when immediately the presence of the Holy Spirit came strongly in our midst. There were emotional and physical responses to the power of God touching the pastors as they were being baptized in the Holy Spirit or given fresh impartation. It is always our desire to move with what the Lord is doing at such times. It is so important that we not attempt to control or quench the Holy Spirit. His work in just minutes can have profound and lasting impact in a leader’s life, including healing and deliverance, prophetic direction, powerful impartation and much more. Praise the Lord for His faithfulness and for giving us the gift of His Holy Spirit! A FRESH TOUCH A common testimony from the pastors who attend World MAP conferences is that they so enjoy receiving solid Bible teaching that addresses their concerns and 6 • WORLD MAP DIGEST / Spring 2009
Pastors’ joy in attending World MAP Conference is undimmed by close quarters.
desires, and experiencing the Holy Spirit’s work and ministry in their midst. We are blessed by these comments, for this is what we pray will take place at each of our conferences. This is also a fulfillment of the vision God has given World MAP for our seminars: to bring biblically sound, top-quality pastoral training to church leaders, and to make place for a fresh work of the Holy Spirit that will encourage, strengthen, equip and empower each leader for effective, anointed ministry. This may seem like a big order; but we serve a BIG God who delights in doing above what we ask or think, amen? One of the deeply-committed pastors I had the joy of meeting in Adoor was Pastor Philip. He had been a pastor for several decades, and now oversees 18 churches while actively pastoring his own work. Brother Philip was 86 years young, and was happily anticipating his 87th birthday in a few days! He was thankful for a fresh touch of encouragement and refreshing at the conference. What a rare honor and humbling privilege to serve such saints!
for. We enjoyed the privilege of sharing a few meals with the head of the center, Brother Nolan. When we met him, it was clear he was in poor health. So after our first breakfast together, the team asked him if we could pray for him. He readily agreed, but as we laid hands on him and began to pray he seemed somewhat awkward and unfamiliar with what we were doing. However, he was receptive and grateful for the prayer. Several days later, he approached us to warmly thank us and to let us know he felt a great deal better. He mentioned that he had never experienced or known about being simply prayed over for healing. What was to us a small and everyday occurrence turned out to be a life-changing event for Brother Nolan. Not only did God heal him, but I believe God was opening a revelation of truth to him that could have a profound impact on his life and service to God. What a blessed reminder for each of us to continually look for opportunity to make a place for God to reveal Himself to others through us.
HYDERABAD World MAP’s second conference took place in central India, in the large and fairly developed city of Hyderabad. We arrived rather late the night before the conference was to begin and were taken to a Catholic retreat center where the team would be staying. It was a secure and peaceful setting where we were well cared
A GLORIOUS TIME TOGETHER We enjoyed the company of more than 600 church leaders in Hyderabad. As in the prior conference, these fellow-laborers were very receptive to the Bible teaching and ministry of the Holy Spirit, and felt free to give testimony of God’s work in their midst. At the beginning of each conference, I like to get a feel for the
prior experience of those in attendance. So I usually ask a number of questions to get to know them better. Though our Hyderabad conference had been promoted as a Spiritfilled gathering, it was interesting to note the number of pastors who indicated that they had not been baptized in the Holy Spirit. It didn’t come as a complete surprise, because the further north one travels in India, the fewer Christians there are and the less exposure they’ve had to the work of the Holy Spirit. So one evening, we studied through the Bible about the baptism of the Holy Spirit. At the conclusion of the teaching, I asked for those who wanted this gift to come forward. It was a tremendous thrill to see more than 125 pastors stream forward – and then receive the Holy Spirit! We then began to worship and ask the Lord for a fresh filling of His Spirit for all who were present. How we enjoyed entering into a powerful and glorious time together of receiving and being touched by power of the Holy Spirit! God was gracious to allow another fruitful time of ministry in Hyderabad. We have had many comments of pastors forwarded to us by our conference coordinators and ministry partners at IBL. The church leaders expressed their gratitude and sincerely asked World MAP to host more conferences soon. May the Lord grant release and provision in this regard! CONCLUSION At the end of both conferences, the teaching team had the privilege of giving every pastor in attendance their own copy of The Shepherd’s Staff, the most recent edition of ACTS
Praying for India Scripture teaches us that all nations are to be the “inheritance” of the Son (Ps 2:8; Rev 5:8,9). As joint heirs with Christ (Rom 8:17), we too must “ask” (Ps 2:8) through our role as intercessors, a “kingdom of priests” (Rev 5:10). Our regular prayers should include interceding for the nations in general, as well as for specific nations. Here are some suggestions when praying for India: Pray for God to abolish the strongholds of: • Demonic influence and deception through false religions, idol-worship, etc. • The evil of hopelessness and bondage perpetuated by the caste system • Greed and covetousness – material wealth which blinds the eyes of people to their spiritual poverty • Violence by radical Hindu and other terrorist groups, especially against Christians Pray for God to move in the following areas: • The maturing of existing church leaders and pastors • Raising up of laborers in the harvest – a new generation of committed church leaders and pastors • Unity in the Body of Christ • Effective and fruitful evangelism and the discipleship WMAP of new converts Seminar • Release of His anointing for signs, wonders and miracles to accompany the clear Gospel message locations • The Church of India being motivated to engage in good in India works to meet the vast needs in their own society (illiteracy, poverty, disease, etc.) • The current elections in India (April 2009), that a righteous government (1Tim 2:1-3) favorable to religious freedom will be elected.
Magazine, a conference certificate to acknowledge their participation, as well as additional books and materials that had been donated. We also shook their hands or embraced them, and spoke blessing over them. Each such encounter affirmed to us the desire of God to do great and mighty things in the Indian people, and beyond their borders to touch the world for Christ. God has His sovereign hand on the nation of India to accomplish His purpose and will in this hour! SPIRITUAL LIFELINE It is always a joy and privilege to serve the pastors of India and to play a role in standing with them as they fulfill their purpose in God. The Bible reveals that all ministry flows from relationship – first with God, and then with people. World
MAP functions effectively and fruitfully in India because of our long-standing partnership with the brothers and sisters at IBL (India Bible Literature). They are key to our effectiveness in India and well beyond, as they assist in the printing and mailing of World MAP’s materials around the world. Equally, your relationship with World MAP in both prayer and support makes the ministry we fulfill possible. Your continued partnership with us provides a spiritual lifeline of Christ’s hand extended to so many around the world. What a blessing and joy to serve together, in these the greatest days of Harvest the world has ever known. May we continue to see the glory of the Lord revealed in all His majesty and power among the nations, until truly all flesh see it together! (Isa 40:5) Spring 2009 / WORLD MAP DIGEST • 7
ing all t a c i d a er
STUMBLING BL OCKS
He then lists specific benefits “birthed from OBSTACLES ABOUND ON THE MISSION FIELDS OF ACTS Magazine”: THE WORLD. False religions oppose the spread of the “My spiritual character has progressed, and is Gospel. Remoteness and geographic barriers hinder really growing up. the flow of vitally needed training resources to “Deeper understanding, as Bible-based teachfront-line ministers of the Great Commission. ings are applied to my life and fellow saints – i.e., the In places like Brazil and Malawi, both kinds of teaching of Prayer, Praise and Worship. barriers can be formidable. “People are finding it easy to preach, teach and As Vander Santos, our Portuguese-language exercise spiritual gifts in our homes cells, local translator in the city of Venda churches and branches. Nova [lit., “New Wind”], “Intercession ministry explains, “Many leaders here has experienced breakin Brazil have been receiving throughs, even for prayer and spiritual food of quality deliverance. because World MAP has “Harvest of many souls been arriving up to where they brought to God’s sanctuary; are working.” And “where simplicity in Outreach they are working” ranges programmes, especially anywhere from the teeming door-to-door evangelbairros of Rio de Janeiro to ism.” the murky jungles of the This earnest Amazon. leader, who clearly “I receive a lot of letters has a passion for from leaders of churches, By Keith G. Balser “evangelizing and cell-groups, biblical interceding”, has schools, distant and poor applied for his copy of communities where they The Shepherd’s Staff. His eagerness to badly need money for feeding, leaders in prisons receive that, and to continue receiving ACTS, stands and much more,” Vander explains. “All of them out vigorously in his concluding note: affirm that World MAP material is a true seminar “When The Shepherd’s Staff is received, I will for them. That material has been enriching vastly update you.. By the end of three years, I will update their ministry with the knowledge that they have you how ACTS has been mailed – how many magabeen acquiring with ACTS and The Shepherd’s Staff.” zines I received. ACTS Magazine is a great blessing to me and our family (brothers, sisters and mother) BREAKTHROUGHS and Christian friends. Keep it up! In spreading God’s A native evangelist whose harvest field lies on Word, we are working together with you to reach the other side of the world – along the shores of centhe souls of people in Malawi and the world. More tral Africa’s sprawling Lake Malawi – highlights the comments next time, as we wait for God’s mighty spiritual barriers World MAP training has equipped leading. Thank you.” him to overcome: And, anxious that nothing interrupt his supply “God bless World MAP for the powerful-based of World MAP’s equipping magazine, he prints in ministry in God’s Word to us. God really chose you bold block letters his new postal box number, notto open us to understand, that we can be protected ing that “the current address will eradicate all stumby God, His Word and believing in His leading. bling blocks.” Many false doctrines, which are not biblically supported, have been overcome by the help of ACTS.” 8 • WORLD MAP DIGEST / Spring 2009
“His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey Him” (Dan 7:27). Gomoa Assin: Where Christ Is Being Acclaimed As King Of Kings By Gayla Dease In Africa, the lion is said to be king of the jungle. In Gomoa Assin, part of Ghana’s Central Region – a coastal district with a legacy of powerful tribal empires – the “traditional ruler” is king of the land. Born into a royal family, David Holdbrook’s father was the Traditional Ruler, and Brother David himself was second in command. “My Mother’s house were also King Makers from another Royal Family,” Holdbrook explained to World MAP when he wrote to tell us he had relinquished his right to a kingship in order to serve the one true King: Christ. And thanks to ACTS and The Shepherd’s Staff, he is now reaching out to other traditional rulers – and even beyond them, to the children who are being raised and groomed to replace them. Who Are These Rulers? “They are the leaders and the custodians of the land – communities,” Holdbrook explained. “Most of them, even though they go to church, also believe in other gods. They also practice ancestral and idol worship. Continued on the next page Spring 2009 / WORLD MAP DIGEST • 9
Continued from page 9
Some of them do this out of ignorance, thinking that it is a practice which was laid down to them by the ancestors; that it is ok to continue with it.” They also practice adultery and polygamy, he added. But Holdbrook knows the Truth – and has a hunger to share it with them. “This is the passion the Lord has laid on my heart – to reach out to the people in such high position,” he said. World MAP’s vision thus resonates strongly with Brother Holdbrook’s own: to reach and equip those in key leadership positions – so they can reach and disciple their own people. His Testimony: Zealous For His Calling After completing his elementary school education, Holdbrook apprenticed as an electrician, but at the age of 26 he was selected and installed as the traditional ruler (King) to succeed his great granduncle from his mother’s side. “Even though my parents were from the Royal Homes (King Makers) they did not forget their Maker,” he recently recalled. “My parents were both leaders of the local Methodist church. As I was growing up, I saw my father conducting early morning prayer meetings in our home.” He remains grateful for that early introduction to God. “I was very zealous with the things of God even in my youthful age,” he noted. He quickly became a Bible Class leader in the Wesley Methodist Church at Cape Coast, Ghana – the first Methodist church in Ghana, he said. “During my nineteenth year as Traditional Ruler I was invited to The Full Gospel Men’s Fellowship breakfast meeting. At that meeting, I confessed Jesus as my Lord and Savior – a step I took which I have never regretted. After that meeting, I became a member of The Full Gospel Men’s Fellowship. With my fellowship with this organization, I felt the need of the baptism of the Holy Spirit and I was blessed with that precious gift. After the baptism of the Holy Spirit, my love for God and His work grew more and more. I began evangelizing on the street, the market places and the beaches.” During this time, Holdbrook said his
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“love for the things of the world decreased” and he “decided to abdicate the stool [carved-wood seat that serves as a de facto throne and emblem of royal power] as a Traditional Ruler” so he could devote more time to his calling as an evangelist. “It was not easy to take such decision,” he admitted. “But with God nothing shall be impossible. My work as a full-time evangelist started on the streets at the market places, at the beaches (ministry to the fishermen) and in the long-distant buses.” The Lord led him to pastor a young African church, “Gospel Light International Church”, and after seven years’ service with Gospel Light, he moved to the United States and started a mission: The Solid Foundation Outreach International Ministry. Which took him right back to Gomoa Assin, where he coordinated a prayer conference and outreach to the Traditional Rulers! ACTS Arrives At The Right Moment “The Lord did great things. Even Traditional Rulers gave their lives to Jesus! The Shepherd’s Staff books were of great help. We gave the books out to the church leaders, Traditional Rulers, and Bible School students.” Today this prayer ministry meets every Tuesday at 10 a.m. to pray not just for the leaders but also for the community. “The people in this community are farmers. The living conditions in that community are not very good. Even though there is electricity and tap water in the community, there is no single job in the community except the farming. Even in the farming they depend on the natural rainfall so if the rainfall fails, they are at loss. “The traditional leaders of the community and some of the people in the community believe in idol and ancestral worship. Most of the Christians there are not steadfast in the Lord. And are neither cold nor hot. There is a great need of a revival in the community. Education is very low in that community. The people do not have money to send their children to the high school.” “ACTS and The Shepherd’s Staff have played a great
role,” he said. “The leaders who received these materials were blessed. One pastor, when he received the ACTS Magazine and opened it, said he was fortunate to have the magazine at that moment because he is in the Bible School and at that time they were learning about Christianity and False Religion. I called one pastor a couple of weeks ago and he was thanking me for The Shepherd’s Staff because he is using it for his discipleship class. I also presented a few copies of The Shepherd’s Staff to a Bible School and they were so excited – so much so that they asked me if they can have some copies every year for the students. There is a GREAT need of ACTS and The Shepherd’s Staff in the nation of Ghana as a whole.” Equipped For Kingdom Business Leaders across Ghana welcome World MAP’s work in filling that need. Here is a brief sampling: Charles Akorbia ministers in Ashanti Region, lying north of Gomoa District. (The Ashanti Empire once warred with the Central Region’s Fante Confederacy.) “There is nothing in the ACTS which I may say is ‘not helpful’,” he writes, referring to the Reader Evaluation questionnaire on the magazine’s renewal form, “since the writer bases all his quotations on the Word of God, thus [using] the Holy Bible to explain every content.” Ken Dwumfour Foricuoh of Eastern Region is “much impressed by the way and manner how the book of Shepherd’s Staff has helped me in Christian life. Especially, in leadership. It still helps me by guiding me to impart knowledge… even [to] my coworkers at Ghana National Fire Service whom I am working with at District level.” James Awotwe, a government worker in the
Fanti Mines area of Aboso, Western Region who also serves as a church deacon, regularly “picks topics from your ACTS for my morning class”. He describes his sphere of influence: “I am a local witness leader at Fanti Mines Assembly, and Youth Assistant Leader in District level at Aboso.” Like David Holdbrook, he has an eye to the rising generation: “The church has opened Nursery Assembly at Bobooko, my village, three miles from Fanti Mines Town.” Writing from Ghana’s capital city of Accra in the south, Victor Chinye uses capital letters to laud the high-profile influence of World MAP’s Bible School in a Book: “Not only is this book a masterpiece; it is I believe the best Christian literature of the last century. THE SHEPHERD’S STAFF is a needed guide for up-and-coming ministers of the Gospel like me and my friends.” From the banks of the Volta River on the eastern edge of the country, Pastor Anku George Kofi – Area Head of The Apostolic Church in Ghana – sums it all up nicely: “The ACTS Magazine broadens my mind to do more in the Ministry… The Shepherd’s Staff makes it easy for me to train more leaders who support in the Kingdom business.” One-on-One… To Impact Multitudes David Holdbrook is meticulously enterprising in conducting Kingdom business. As part of his mission work in Ghana, he has met with several key authorities in the Central Region: the Chief and Elders of Gomoa Abamkrom; Traditional Leaders of Gomoa Assin Tradition Area; the Paramount Chief and stool elders of Cape Coast Traditional Area. He also met with the Paramount Chief and stool leaders of Akwadum (Koforidua) in the Eastern Region of Ghana; and the Chief and Elders of Tarkwa Dompim in the Western Region of Ghana. “All these meetings were open forums,” he explained. “I do the presentation of the Word of God about kingship – God’s way: who they are in the plan of God; God’s regulation about the kingship; and God’s judgment. After the presentation we allow questions time. “Many of the traditional leaders, after hearing the Word of God, openly gave their lives to Jesus Christ. We also had the opportunity to meet other traditional leaders on one-on-one basis.” And he is not stopping there. Once the current line of leaders is phased out, the young children “will grow up to take over from them. So there is the need to reach out to these young ones. They are the next generation to succeed the leaders.” May they also be the next ones groomed for Great Commission leadership through ACTS Magazine and The Shepherd’s Staff – with their chief and paramount goal to reach their own and coming generations for the eternal Kingdom of God. Spring 2009 / WORLD MAP DIGEST • 11
UNREACHED PEOPLE GROUP
The BHOJPURI BIHARI of FIJI HOME: Scattered homesteads and farm plots, mostly on leased land. POPULATION: c. 32,000 RELIGION: 76% Hindu; 20% Muslim; 4% Christian SPREADING THE DARKNESS: Thousands of miles from their homeland in northern India, the Bihari arrived in the Fiji Islands in the late 1800s, imported as contract laborers by the British governor to work on the islands’ sugarcane plantations. Tensions between these forced expatriates and the native Melanesian population have often muddied the political waters in this land of idyllic beaches. The Bihari are a proud and industrious people, zealous to preserve their culture and religion. North-Indian Hindu missionaries descended on Fiji in the early twentieth century to push for revival of their ancestral faith. Indo-Fijians relocating farther afield – even to Western nations – continue to establish colonies of Hindu learning in their newly adopted homelands.
PRAY FOR: • A rapidly growing revival among Bihari Christians. • A sweeping harvest of souls from among Bihari Hindus, who will go forth to plant fervent colonies of Gospel witness in far-flung regions beyond.
Join Us In Praying for the Nations Many of you faithfully prayed for the life-changing church leaders’ seminars that took place in Nigeria last fall and India in February. Because of your diligent partnership in prayer, the pastors who attended and those whom they shepherd will be eternally transformed by what God did by His Spirit and through the teaching of His Word. The role you play as an intercessor in World MAP’s Prayer Corps is a key component of what God is doing around the world today. Just knowing that we – and the pastors’ training conferences we conduct – are being so faithfully covered in daily prayer is a tremendous blessing to us and the pastors who attend. Many of us can give of our resource; some of us can go to other nations; but all of us can PRAY! Because of Christ’s finished work, we all as believers have free access to “come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Heb 4:16). And as World MAP continues to conduct ministry-equipping seminars in crisis-torn nations such as India, the need for prayer is profound… as it is also in overlooked corners of the harvest field, such as the Fiji Islands and the remote country of Nepal. The need is profound, yet so are the opportunities – for “if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us” (1John 5:14). Please take this opportunity to join with the band of hundreds who already receive our monthly World MAP Prayer Corps bulletins and emergency prayer alerts. Simply write to us – or E-mail us at WMAPPrayercorps@aol.com – and send us your name and address or E-mail address. It is a privilege and honor to join with our Father in Heaven through prayer as He moves to bring people from every tribe, tongue and nation to His Son in these days of both challenge and promise! 12 • WORLD MAP DIGEST / Spring 2009
KINGDOM IN THEIR MIDST
Nepal Population: 28,563,377 80.6% Hindu 10.7% Buddhist 4.2% Muslim 2% Kirant (a mix of animism, Hinduism and Buddhism) 2.5% Christian President of the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal: Ram Baran Yadav Vice President: Paramananda Jha Prime Minister: Pushpa Kamal Dahal Deputy Prime Minister: Bamdev Gautam Cabinet: Majority coalition comprising primarily: Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist); Communist Party of Nepal (United Marxist-Leninist); Madhesi People’s Rights Forum (initially a vocal ethnic-advocacy group). Growth amid turmoil: In 1952 there were virtually no Christians in Nepal; by 1994 there were 30,000; current estimates put the number at three quarters of a million. This means that the 1952-1994 growth rate averaged 667 new converts per year, while the 1994-2009 growth rate soared to more than 44,000 per year. One Nepali churchplanting ministry reports having started 65 churches in the last decade. Civil war raged for much of that decade between government troops and Maoist insurgents. A negotiated settlement in 2006, leading to an interim constitution and then elections in 2008, transformed Nepal from the world’s only official Hindu kingdom into a secular state, with the Maoists having plurality control of the government and King Gyanendra demoted from absolute monarch to largely a figurehead. Yet the “Nepal Defense Army”, a force of Hindu extremists, has employed violence – including suicide bombings – in its push to bring Nepal back under official Hindu rule. PRAY FOR: • Church-growth rate in Nepal to soar even higher. • Safeguarding of Nepali Christians and full freedom to share the Gospel. • Acceleration of leadership training to keep pace with the explosive rate of conversions – that every new believer may quickly grow in spiritual maturity and fruitfulness for the Kingdom of God in Nepal.
Praying for the Nations
JOIN THE WORLD MAP PRAYER CORPS AS WE CIRCLE THE GLOBE WITH INTERCESSION FOR THE ADVANCE OF GOD’S KINGDOM. Spring 2009 / WORLD MAP DIGEST • 13
‘A Meal for All’ Readers Far And Wide Feast On Truth Gleaned From World MAP Literature “I am very happy to receive ACTS. It is easy to understand and helpful. These days I am referring everything to it. The Shepherd’s Staff is a training book. I am using it to develop my congregation. It is an all-purpose book.” – Solomon O. Mokotedi, Botswana
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“It is very exciting to see that lives are changed from preaching and teaching the Word of God from the ACTS Magazine. Even we had a Bible school and pastors requesting photocopies for them to get back to their respective villages and start preaching, teaching and evangelizing their own people.” – Pastor Otto Burassi, Papua New Guinea
UA P PA W NE EA IN U G
14 • WORLD MAP DIGEST / Spring 2009
“At the beginning I want to thank you about your great Activities in this way of ACTS and The Shepherd’s Staff, and I pray always for these books too, and that God use these books to service in all of people, who love the God and His Son, Lord Jesus Christ.” – Mr. Mikhael Emada, Egypt
“This ACTS Magazine is GODSENT to me. I believe this is so because as a source of my teaching, I am changed from Glory to Glory and so are the people I am teaching. I have witnessed the great work of God in people’s lives, specially those who are still young in the Faith.” – Segrid Piamonte, Philippines
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“I am an avid reader of your publication The Shepherd’s Staff. I find it one of the best resources I have ever set my eyes on to assist me in understanding the Scripture and also equipping me… “When I go out to work with farmers in our project areas, I seize the opportunity to evangelize to the farmers the good news of our Lord Jesus Christ.” – Chairman Austin Ngwira, Malawi
LA A M
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“I am really happy to write you this thank-you note. I should write it exactly after the reception of The Shepherd’s Staff, but if I did it, my thank-you note could not be complete. I could not know the value
“In June 2005, the church in Dar-es-Salaam gave me an opportunity to open the Mission Training School aiming to reach out to those un-reached people in villages, which I did. Now, from 2005 up to now, in our Trainings, we have been frequently using your ACTS. “Indeed, the ACTS you publish motivated me and from which the Lord gave me burden to unreached children of God. Since then, we have managed to plant ten churches.” – Director Sardick Sikapopo, Tanzania
“Thank you for sending me the ACTS Magazine. I have found it very helpful and inspiring. It enlightened me in how to live life in the Spirit in the righteousness of God in Christ by His grace.” – Deacon Laurence Boon Piang Koh, Singapore “Comments about ACTS / Shepherd’s Staff: Both are well designed and spiritually easy to understand. Both, well studied, provide a full school; equipping with full skill necessary for the positive ministry. As regards The Shepherd’s Staff, no words are available to express its significance. It is essential for all at all times. Its material is a bank of riches quite necessary for the purposes of training, teaching and preaching. A meal for all and for all the times.” – Elder David Ndunyu Ndirangu, Kenya
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and importance of the tool. Now it is better to do it, because I know its value and its importance, even though I am conscious that I cannot find thoughts and words to thank you for such kind of document. It is very important to tell you that I read it with the most pleasure possible, and that every day, moreover, I find in it all the best, such as: how to pray, how to worship, how to praise God, how to preach, and so on. Thanks thousands and thousands of times and be blessed millions and millions of times, all of you World MAP’s members.” – Philome Leger, Haiti
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“Thanks a million! Please keep up the good work. The Truth which you preach and support is indeed a life-saver to millions across the world.” – Kennedy “Kenny Chuks” Chukwuma, Nigeria
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“The doctrine ACTS teaches is perfectly correct according to the Bible.” – Yohannan Mathew, India
Spring 2009 / WORLD MAP DIGEST • 15
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‘COME OVER!’ “Come over to Macedonia and help us” (Acts 16:9). That plea – and need – is echoed on every continent. Though we can’t answer every call to “come over” there, vital help can come through the farreaching training World MAP both sends and sponsors. $5 supplies a church leader with a free ACTS Magazine subscription; $8 with a free copy of The Shepherd’s Staff; $20 with a week of intensive ministerial equipping at a World MAP Spiritual Renewal Seminar. These are strongly tangible ways you can help us answer that modern-day “Macedonian call”.