(Photo courtesy Bibles For The World)
Nepal (MNN) –- When Nepal declared itself a secular state, two centuries of Hindu monarchy were over.In May 2006, Christians had high expectations. However, in the transition to a democracy, the new leadership has been reluctant to give equal rights to the Christian minority.
Christians living in Nepal continue to be denied full rights by the government. Last fall, the Nepali government signed an agreement that would give Christians full rights, but the government is yet to honor that agreement. The new constitution also bans proselytizing.
However, since Bibles For The World exists to take the message of John 3:16 to the whole world, co-founder and President Mawii Pudaite says they'll find another way. Over the last year, they've sharpened focus on how to resource existing church communities in Nepal.
One way was to put the Bible into people's hands directly. "400,000 people were given the Gospel of John. Our partner churches in Nepal took maximum advantage of the Christmas Season by sharing the Word of God with those who had not heard of Him."
Since then, Pudaite says they've had an exciting response. She explains the way the program works: "We begin with the giving, freely, of the Gospel of John in Nepali. On the back of the Gospel is an offer for a free copy of the entire New Testament with Psalms and Proverbs." The project is a joint undertaking of Bibles For The World, the Nepal Bible Society, and the national churches and Christian ministries in Nepal.
Demand has grown for the Gospel of John. "We are ready to print another 500,000 Gospels to continue this exciting project" in order to meet the demand and fulfill the requests from ministry partners such as the Reuben Rai Evangelistic Association. This ministry uses sports as one of means of witnessing the Gospel to their people. Pudaite is excited to note, "They organized the Church Boys United Soccer Team. They have requested at least 100,000 copies of the Nepali Gospel of John which will be given out to the spectators at the Tournaments this Spring."
A call for funding went out, and God provided enough money to print the next 500,000 Gospels. That created its own printing project, Pudate adds. "The urgent need is for the printing of at least 100,000 copies of the New Testament with Psalms and Proverbs for follow-up ministry."
In addition, Bibles For the World is helping conduct another Seed Sowers Seminar in Kathmandu with national pastors, evangelists, and mission workers. Several BFTW Board members are also participating in the seminar, slated for March. Having a tool is good, but knowing how to use it is even better. Mawii agrees. "The purpose of the Seed Sowers Seminar is to encourage, uplift, and equip believers to use the Word of God as an evangelistic tool. Training is given in personal evangelism and how to connect new believers and seekers with local discipleship-training efforts."
The church leaders and others attending the seminar will be sent out with training, prayer cover, and boxes of the Gospel of John for their members to distribute in their areas.
To share the most basic concept of who God is, as shared in John 3:16. Here, Pudaite shares it in her mother tongue, Hmar. "Pathien in khawvel a hmangai emem a, chulei chun a Naupa neisun a pek a, Ama chu tukhom a ring taphot chu an bo hmang noh a, chatuona hringna an nei lemna dingin."
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