As the world is in the grip of crises, India is no exemption.
We have no choice but to confront it! Our STN staff has encountered with new challenges! Before this crisis cropped up, our faculty and regional directors were well equipped with the knowledge of His Word not to stand still but be still before Him to know how to address this horrible CRY of His servants.
Launching out with services of care and compassion
Pastor D., one of our first STN graduates in 2014, stepped out to serve the pastors who are being trained by him in his area.
These five students of BTCP, having no food or finances, were facing tragedy. Pastor D., who is pastoring the first STN church plant, took up the challenge with food. He provided grain and groceries for these needy families.
J.S., our Regional Director of North and Nepal, reports,
“Pr. A is an active student in BTCP Sitapur, UP group. He is from H background. His family is the only unit which believed in Jesus from his joint family ten years ago. His parents turned him and his family out of home empty handed as a punishment for becoming a Christian. Only income he receives is from the offerings and gifts offered by the believers on Sunday during worship and at other meetings. As the restrictions for gatherings started even before the lockdown, he ran out of money. The North Indian faculty, especially Br. D.C. took care of him and arranged for his needs.”
P., Regional Director, along with his wife, Deborah, volunteered to visit a pastor’s family sensing that there is no food at their home.
Bringing the rice bag from their house, this couple expressed their love to provide for this needy pastor’s family. They serve with a local church, pastoring an independent church near dump yard among rag pickers. When this need was talked over with the local pastor, he too contributed to give 20 Kg’s of rice. The family that received has been a example of sharing compassion with others.
Is giving needed food deviating for STN from our focus of teaching and equipping ministry?
No, but it is a ministry of compassion and care, learned from scripture. Pastor I.K. and his wife U. launched out along with his people to distribute with 125 food packets. It wouldn’t be a surprise if the meal distributed was a last meal to someone!
Here is what V.K., our regional director says: “Feeding the hunger became the desire of our hearts as we begin to observe the need. The lockdown brought unprecedented misery to our pastors who are undergoing our study programs. As we saw that there are no groceries left in the kitchen and no rice to cook even for a meal in pastors’ homes. I discovered that several pastors have no food. My wife and I were moved in our hearts to send a love gift of Rupees 8000 to six pastors. It was heart wrenching experience to hear the testimonies of these pastors. One pastor, Pastor M., shared how the amount was helpful to buy his regular diabetic medicines and some groceries. Another Pastor J. who lives in the mountain area had a little amount that helped him, his wife, child, and an aged mother to eat just rice (having nothing else with it). But this money now sent is helpful. Pastor K. who is working in ‘A’ area was able to buy rice and groceries that will take them through for 15 days.”
Ladies get to listen God’s word online.
While all along Flory was ministering the Word at different locations and in local churches, it has been a great opportunity not to stop this due to lockdown but do it online. Those interested, please log on to hear by subscribing to El Shaddai Prayer House and type Flory Kumar. Before the unprecedented lockdown, Flory had been to several areas to minister the Word where the ladies didn’t know reading and writing. Today, these ladies are starving for the Word – having no online technology in their areas.
Launching out to contact in the field
Our regional directors and faculty are instructed to contact BTCP groups, leaders and participants located in rural areas.
V.K. was able to contact five Pastors from each training class and interact with them about their training class and understand their doubts and clarify certain issues. P. was able to stay in contact with his two faculty who would further keep in contact with the BTCP study groups.
J.S. says, “Some of the students were contacted over phone, email and social media to encourage them to be diligent in the systematic Bible study. Giving a feedback, one of the students from Kanpur, UP told that it is very interesting to study Bible by finding answers for the six questions of observation. He claims to understand the message of the passage which he studies. Previously ‘everything was vague and confusing while reading the Bible’. Now he is able to understand portions after portions of the Bible. Pr S.R. and P.R. of BTCP Sudha, Nepal Border is getting sufficient time during the lock down to practice what they studied from the Course #1 of BTCP. According to our faculty Br. D.C., both of them are ‘very seriously engaged in the study of Bible based on Course #1’.
Bro R. from Dumka BTCP, Jharkhand confessed that previously he considered the ‘yelling’ of the senior pastors as the Word of God. Bro F. of the same group also gave a similar feedback. They told that they also followed the same pattern of preaching in the local churches. They confessed that even after many years of ‘powerful preaching’ there is desperate decline in the church attendance. But now they are beginning to understand how the real Word of God should be studied and obeyed. They are want to preach the real Gospel in their fellowships.”
Work from home includes: J.S. was able to prepare 38 prayer partner list. V.K. prepared prayer list of 429.
Learning During Lockdown
Lockdown is a personal benefit says, J.S., “Lock down helped me to study a lot, from Bible and other books and to pray which were becoming very rare in my life. I also could communicate with many of my Christian contacts during this time of lock down to introduce the ministry of STN.”
- Ryder Kumar will be ministering again online on Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday.
- Please pray for all the families of our Faculty and Esther Admin Assistant to International Director.
- Pray for the safety of STN International Board living in the US as the country is most effected. For God’s wisdom as the board meets and makes important decisions.
- STN India does planning to reschedule classes in several places from April 15th onwards.
- For the comfort of the K. family whose father has been called to glory.
- Pastors who are struggling to survive during these days of calamity.
- Churches in rural areas that are unable to have online services.
- LRI program that is scheduled to begin in June 2020.
- Wisdom of God to the regional directors serving with the faculty, pastors and participants.