by Norma Gunter
My job as Mission and Service Coordinator is to communicate missions to my whole church and keep you involved. In the last BEAM I shared about several projects the ABW is working on this year. The first is the MOP (Mission Outreach Project). The goal has been set at $6,000 for the state.
The MOP is “Tablets for Education.” Missionaries Rick & Anita Gutierrez are American Baptist Foreign Mission Society Missionaries in Durban, South Africa. Together they discern unmet health needs of the people and train members in health skills that can be used in concert with evangelistic outreach.
Their job is to train health builders using the latest technologies, like computer tablets, to teach. On these tablets they show videos about health and agricultural practices as well as record keeping of health encounters and an updatable health training manual.
The videos are used by members of Discovery Bible Groups, which is established by each health builder. The members of this Bible Discovery Group are learning God’s word together on a weekly basis. Scripture passage are shared and discussed and the people are challenged to obey. People have said they learned more about God and Jesus in one session of Discovery Bible Group than listening to hours long traditional Zulu sermons. This way of approaching the Bible is unique, powerful and can spread and sustain itself without professional or trained facilitators. It is also an important way to teach and build skills.
Lives are changed when people encounter the God of the Bible in a discovery format, and embrace God’s word. Rick and Anita need our help to purchase a video camera/sound equipment, tablets and money to produce videos. They need to create videos on “poultry egg incubation for the backyard gardener” in Zulu/English professionally translated, edited and voice over. The goal of $6,000 will meet their needs and strengthen this vital ministry among the Zulu people.
Next time I will share another ABW project. Earlier this month one of the biggest celebrations in the history of International Ministries was held at our Green Lake Conference Center in Green Lake, Wisconsin. The celebration was for 200 years of overseas Global Missions. All of our global missionaries and their families as well as representatives from most of our global partners and a full bus load of West Virginia Baptists were there. John Simmons, WV Baptist Associate Executive Minister, reported in the “West Virginia Baptist Newsletter” that, “Those of us blessed to be there on opening night heard the packed house of l,300 sing HOW GREAT THOU ART, each in their own language. The tent was filled with the awesome presence of God.” How I wish I could have been there. I’ve been blessed with two visits to Green Lake in the past and hope to go there again.
If you do not receive the “West Virginia Baptist Newsletter” notify the church office. Another magazine is “Seasons” a publication of American Baptist Women’s Ministries. Both are filled with information.
Ladies, start making plans to attend the next ABW state event, the Spiritual Growth Retreat September 26-28 at Parchment Valley. The theme is “Catching your Breath: Discovering Your Sabbath.”