Shining Light into the Darkness
by Harold Mack, WMP president
“The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, upon them a light has shined.” —Isaiah 9:2
FELLOW WMP BOARD MEMBER Dean Crowder and I recently traveled to India to visit with five major ministry partners. What a joy it was for us to hear first-hand accounts of how World Missionary Press materials are playing a key role in reaching this nation of over 1.2 billion people! What a challenge it was to hear of the great need for more! This nation—for centuries under the dark cloud of Hinduism, shackled by the oppression of the caste system—desperately needs the light of the gospel of Christ. The task is daunting; in fact, without God’s help it would be impossible.
India Bible Literature:
Our visit began in Chennai with Brother E. Velayutham (Velu)—WMP’s national coordinator for India and Director of India Bible Literature. As we met with WMP distributors, eleven shared inspiring testimonies. All agreed that greater quantities of Scripture booklets are needed, as their outreach efforts depend on using Scripture booklets from World Missionary Press. Brother Velu again emphasized the need for a container per month to meet the needs of the thousands of distributors he supplies on behalf of WMP.
Three container shipments are being sent to IBL in May and June. In addition, WMP printings in India are being supervised by Brother Velu. Nine million Scripture booklets (one million of each of three titles in three languages--Telugu, Tamil, and Hindi) have already been printed and dispersed to major ministry partners. Six million more Scripture booklets are scheduled for printing in India this summer.
Another India Ministry (name withheld for security):
In Coimbatore we met with Brother E.—founder of this ministry. A three-hour drive away, we met with about 20 pastors in four rural villages (a village in India has between 100 and 2,500 people). Of about 600,000 villages in India, almost 500,000 are not yet reached with the gospel. This ministry is one of the ministries focusing on reaching these villages for Christ.
They come alongside 3,000 rural pastors to give training and encouragement for 3-5 years, during which time each pastor is responsible to evangelize and plant additional churches in at least five neighboring villages. A recently-received WMP container with about 2 million booklets works out to perhaps 700 booklets each for the 3,000 pastors. We heard numerous times this is just not enough; supplies are depleted within a couple of weeks, and pastors are crying out for more!
We heard their passion to reach the lost and how crucial WMP Scripture booklets are to their work. Called “mini-Bibles,” Scripture booklets are highly valued as many are coming to the Lord and being discipled through them. Over and over the pastors shared the significance of the booklets being pure Scripture organized by topic.
When a sorcerer received a copy of How to Know God, he read it, gave his life to God, was baptized, and is now a pastor—evangelizing villages with his wife and daughter using How to Know God Scripture booklets.
Every Home for Christ:
In Secunderabad, India Every Home Crusade (IEHC) Managing Director Suresh M. shared that while official government statistics list 3% of the population as Christian, a more accurate number is at least 7% (including both Catholics and Protestants). IEHC is working throughout the nation, but focuses much of its effort on the less-evangelized North. IEHC currently has 472 paid workers, but uses many volunteers; their plans include adding an additional 100 pioneer missionaries in the coming year.
As IEHC distributes Scripture materials home to home in villages and cities, people are coming to the Lord. New Christians form local Christ groups (8,500 since 1993), where they are discipled and taught to share their faith. IEHC uses tracts as well as WMP Scripture booklets. Brother Suresh shared that Scripture booklets are highly valued because they contain God’s powerful Word.
Once when the wind blew a booklet to the leg of a Brahman man, he read it and contacted IEHC. He came to the Lord and led 236 family and friends to faith in Christ! When asked how many Scripture booklets IEHC could use, Brother Suresh requested as many as we can possibly send, especially in Hindi, a language widely used in North India.
Our final day in India was spent at Operation Mobilization’s Secunderabad headquarters, meeting with OM Books Director K.C. Joseph and staff. In addition to supplying Scripture materials to other organizations, OM also sends teams of workers into small towns and villages, where they preach, show gospel films, and distribute literature. Over the past 12 years, Fellowship Groups of new believers started through OM evangelism efforts have grown into more than 3,500 churches.
WMP recently sent OM a container of more than 1.8 million Scripture booklets in several Indian languages. OM has also received Tamil, Telugu, and Hindi booklets from recent WMP printings in India. Brother Joseph shared that OM needs much more, as much as we can send. Titles most in demand are Help From Above, How to Know God, and The Way to God.
Our hearts were touched again and again by the powerful stories of lives changed as God’s Word, contained in WMP Scripture booklets, is making an eternal impact for God’s Kingdom! The overwhelming cry from each ministry we work with in India is for more Scripture booklets, as supplies reaching them last only a matter of weeks.
The NEED is to double, triple, quadruple the quantities being produced for India. Thank God for blessing WMP recently with facilities and equipment that will greatly expand our production capabilities here in Indiana! Thank God also for opportunity to print more in India at reasonable cost! Our goal is to greatly increase production for India, to at least 24 million HFA-size booklets per year.
The zeal of Indian Christians to take the light of God's Word into dark places seems unbounded. Would you join with us in supplying increased quantities of Scripture booklets needed to provide those walking in darkness with the light of the gospel?
[Because of economy of operation, each additional million booklets can be produced for approximately $25,000—either in India or in Indiana.]
View compelling testimonies from India distributors by clicking the button below.