Our training has given formerly unschooled church planters a goal to achieve, a path to follow, and a strategy to implement their vision. In the past six months, we trained 127 frontline church planters in six different training programs from four different states.
One example is Deva, who was beaten black and blue by his own villagers after he came to faith. Then Deva’s four-month-old baby got sick. He and his wife, Gangi, entered a church in a neighboring village led by one of our trainees, Rama. Rama and other members of the church prayed for their sick child. The compassion the church showed them moved Deva and Gangi, and they became regular attendees. After three weeks their child was completely healed.
Deva and Gangi decided their newfound joy should be shared. Inspired by Rama, they started a house church in their own village, which attracted four families immediately. This growth sparked the wrath of the villagers. Recently, believers were attacked in three areas in one district. The pattern has created a division among the community members. The leaders need courage to face the opposition and God’s wisdom to handle it wisely. Many of the believers are soaring in faith, but we still need to pray for these persecuted believers.
We continue to train 10 leaders and their wives in this area. All 10 leaders have limited reading skills or are non-literate. Twice a month, they gather and learn Bible stories. Then they train the other leaders who are also non-literate. In the last year alone, this particular team baptized 209 first generation Christians, formed 14 new house churches, launched 16 micro-enterprise groups, started six adult literacy centers, and launched three children community centers.