SIX YEARS IS TOO LONG
by Dr. David Robbins
Bishop UC Pattnayak and his son, Pappu,
surprised us by picking us up at the train
2 hours earlier than expected. A short cut to a
small town 30 minutes away from Jeypore was taken.
On the way to our hotel, Brother UC and Brother
Pappu left no doubt about the excellent timing of
our visit and our two-day Leadership Seminar.
"Things are very difficult in India. You must come
next year for sure. You may not be permitted to come
much longer. Our 80 delegates have so little resources
that we seldom gather together. Loneliness and
isolation is our greatest enemy. You are the only group
that comes to serve alongside us. You must come back
each year. Six years since the last visit is too long."
Being back in Jeypore, a city (town in India) of
500,000, brings back so many memories. Brother
UC is one of the three from Orissa who spoke to me
in Seoul back in 1995 at the Global Consultation
on World Evangelization (GCOWE). He has 85
missionaries working in a large area of his state and
two other states. Hundreds and hundreds of villages
have no missionary. No one comes to see them. This
is one of the most important decisions AIM has
made: we are determined to visit each mission we
work with each year, Lord willing.
The missionaries take heart following a honing of
skills like this and a dramatic increase of church
planting takes place. This is why we are urged so
strongly to return for Leadership Seminars (LS)
Dr. John Crozier, AIM Maritime Representative,
immediately recognized the Orissa Missionary
Movement (OMM) Centre in Jeypore as being the
very complex that was burnt twice and practically
destroyed each time during the great outbreak of
persecution eight years ago. National TV Networks
covered the story. Hundreds of pastors were killed,
many more churches were burnt, 1,000 believers'
homes were destroyed, and tens of thousands were
chased into the jungle becoming homeless. Incredibly,
authorities stood by and watched. Our brothers and
sisters in Christ had no choice but to flee for their lives.
My dear brothers and sisters, we cannot miss this
opportunity to reach the tribes in this vast area of
9 million. They are simple people that will be forced
and cajoled to become Hindus unless we reach
Brother UC, a former Hindu, has been working as
a dynamic mission leader in this city for nearly 50
years. His two sons are 42 and 37 year-old with a
quiet and confident demeanor.
The call in this Newsletter to expect great things
from God and to attempt great things for God is
epitomized by Brother UC and his army of church
planters. When the call was given for commitment
to enter new villages with the Gospel, the altar was
flooded with ninety percent of the delegates who
knelt humbly before the Lord. We prayed for each
of these experienced missionaries who have been
getting discouraged. I prayed with them two at a
time for the next hour. Everyone went home so
encouraged, revived and blessed.
These 85 mission couples are planting churches in a
huge radius where these millions are suddenly more
reachable because of the much improved roads.
Praise our Lord that these messengers refined by
persecution and poverty returned with determination
and confidence in the enabling of the Holy Spirit.
Many new villages will be visited by messengers who
know the language of these villages. These heralds of
the Gospel live at the same economic level, and are
often related to many in their own genetic networks.
Supporting a missionary couple on a monthly basis
can even be as low as $55 in a village setting (usually
costs increase as the size of the place of residence
increases). Would you pray with us about coming
alongside this dynamic church planting mission by
providing the needed support of a missionary family?
posted on August 15, 2018