Going to India, there’s no getting around a 30- to 45-hour journey.
My intent for this trip was to connect with as many Regular Baptist International partners as possible in the southeast region of India. Though one partner was in the States during that time, I was able to meet with six of our international partners. Relationships grow much deeper when you meet with people face-to-face in their location and see firsthand what God is doing through them. Emails communicate facts, but visiting people communicates genuine interest and concern.
In addition to visiting our partners, on four separate occasions I met with ministry leaders of associations that are not partners but that each wanted to share its ministry and get some information about the partnership.
For the 15 days that I was in India, I delivered 26 major messages, all with a translator. The groups ranged from 12 people in a house church to 3,000 assembled for Sunday services. I spoke to three groups of just pastors, speaking seven times on Biblical leadership. At one location I spoke nine times during a three-day Bible conference, followed by twice on Sunday. I was privileged to be part of an engagement party, give the graduation message to nine Bible school graduates, participate in one ordination, observe five people getting baptized, and join in a communion service three times. I slept three nights on an airplane, six nights in a hotel, and 10 nights in pastors’ homes.
Regular Baptist Press International sends Sunday School and Vacation Bible School materials into multiple areas of India. One pastor pulled together a translation team who translated two years of RBP children’s Sunday School curriculum into Telugu. This pastor trained over 2,000 Sunday School teachers in how to use curriculum to teach. On this trip I met with two ministry leaders who would like to translate VBS curriculum into Telugu. This would give us the opportunity to have two VBS themes translated into the local language. Many pastors expressed their gratefulness to Regular Baptist Press International for supplying them with these important resources through the years.
I would like to express my sincerest thanks to those who have contributed to the international travel fund. It is through your generosity that I can make these trips and see significant headway as we leverage resources toward our Great Commission assignment. The next trip, Lord willing, will be to Hungary, Romania, and Portugal, in May.
Chris Hindal is director of Regular Baptist International.