Together, in their roles as mission leaders, Swapon and Rachael Bose always seem to be wearing many hats in the various roles they perform. Although they find it difficult to leave their home and ministry – which is in a primarily Muslim region of South Asia – they are able to be in Canada this month.

While in Manitoba, they are visiting with individuals and church groups, encouraging the believers here, and trusting God for prayer and financial support for their ministries.

In addition to being a pastor, a husband and a father, Swapon oversees 160 churches, supervises 105 staff, and teaches in the Bible School. His wife Rachel is equally industrious as co-pastor and principal of the Bible school. The church they shepherd is the second one they have planted in the city in which they live. Together, they lead a ministry focused on church planting and discipleship among Muslim people.

We asked Swapon and Rachael, “In a predominantly Muslim context, how does one approach mission work?” First of all, the Boses believe that there is no ‘single’ approach to sharing the Gospel with Muslims; each person and community is unique. Thus, they advise their Bible school students to go out and live among the people, get to know them, and share the Gospel appropriate to the context.

Secondly, Swapon urges missionaries to be inquirers, seeking to discover what each individual Muslim believes. This approach, Bose suggests, is intended to help find a point by which to introduce Jesus to them. Thirdly, similarities in several beliefs between Muslims and Christians can be suitable connecting points for sharing the Gospel. Quoting the Qur'an, for example, has proven to be an effective way through which the Boses have encouraged Muslims to investigate who Jesus really is.

The focus of the Bose’s ministry to Muslims is to simply present Christ as Saviour: not a good teacher, not a great leader, but as Saviour. They strongly encourage the missionaries they work with not to say anything, either good or bad, about Mohammed. Instead, they insist that missionaries focus on Christ alone. He is sufficient.

God is at work through their ministry. In the first six months of 2008 they were privileged to baptize 325 Muslim background believers (MBB). This is simply a continuation of what God has been doing in the last few years. There is tremendous growth in the areas where they are working. Meanwhile, prayer is going up for ‘hard ground’ regions where the Gospel has yet to be taken. Hebol, an MBB currently studying at the Bose’s Bible school, is being considered as someone who could initiate the work in the most difficult of these areas.

The Boses left their native South Asia to arrive in Calgary earlier this month. From September 12-25 they are in Manitoba, before a concluding stay in Vancouver.

posted Fall 2008
Advancing Indigenous Missions 2013