On his most recent trip to Asia, David Robbins had the privilege of visiting one of the mission leaders who is closely associated with AIM. Philemon Chhetri and his wife Elishiba are the leaders of New Life Mission in Nepal.

Although born into the family of an Orthodox Hindu priest, Philemon has been a disciple of Jesus Christ since he was a young teenager.

“I was raised with strict Hindu teachings,” Philemon explains. “However, when I was 10, my uncle came home to our village professing Jesus as Lord. [I accepted Christ and then] was baptized at the age of 12. Immediately, my heart was burdened to share the Gospel and I started preaching to my friends and teachers.” Philemon’s life of discipleship and mission work had begun.

Philemon has developed an effective radio and television ministry in the Nepali language. These programs are aired in most of the South Asian countries where Nepalese live. Just recently, on January 19, 2008, the first of five gospel messages was aired on Nepali national TV. Praise God that He is using media such as TV and radio to communicate His Word!

Along with hosting these programs, New Life Mission has started the Joel Faith Bible School and sends out missionaries into Nepal and India. Drawing from Galatians 4:19, Philemon comments, “Unless Christ is formed in me, I cannot be his disciple.” Discipleship in Philemon’s life began with his uncle sharing God’s Word with him, and has continued on into the lives of the missionaries that he works alongside. And discipleship continues to spread as these missionaries faithfully carry the gospel to their own people.

New Church Building
Pastor Joseph is one such missionary. His congregation in Darjeeling is excited to have begun a church building project. Land has been purchased, an engineer has drawn up plans, and an estimate has been made. While there are not yet sufficient funds for the actual construction of the church, Philemon encourages Pastor Joseph to begin with what they have and to go on by faith. “We walk by faith, not by sight,” Chhetri says, “and the Lord will not put us to shame.”

posted Winter 2008
Advancing Indigenous Missions 2013