Saturday, February 09, 2008

India -- 7 February 2008 -- Pastor Naoul

We visited a friend of Anchorage City Church, pastor “Naoul” in a community north of Delhi. Naoul is a church planter. He told us that he had planted 1 church in the 1973-83 time period, 10 churches in 83-93, and over 100 in the following 10 years. He says there are now over 35,000 believers in these churches, and the church planting rate is now accelerating.

He makes a strong case from experience that small churches grow more effectively. He says that in a large church there are many people with gifts who essentially have nothing to do. It is best be believes to harness the God given gifts in kingdom work; often, building new churches.

Their church planting movement moves into villages where a congregation has started and does all the work of building a structure. They have a specialized team for this purpose, so the work goes extremely quickly….which is usually much faster than is the case in rural areas.

They then do two things for the community: first is to provide a 200 foot well, which provides access to good, clean water. Villages often suffer much from disease because of shallow, tainted wells. Second, they build education centers. Both the school and the water pump draw many people, and serve as an opportunity to develop relationship, and to share the Good News.

Naoul also operates a ministry on a satellite TV channel. It reaches many, many people in Asia, and they receive much response. They have a studio set up in the church building he built in 1983.

He said something interesting about tracts: we must have a response address. It is a human soul we are dealing with. The tracts often stir people’s hearts with the Good News…and then have no one to walk through the first steps of faith with them would be terrible.

Naoul traveled with us back to our hotel. He said don’t stay in a hotel again…stay with me. He was a little upset that we had not stayed at his house. He has a large house and there are many staying there as they travel through.

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