Church of God
Several baptisms have taken place in the Church of God in Meghalaya and Assam during the past five months. Among these, 78 people were baptized and participated in foot washing on July 14 at the Qualapatty church in Shillong.
A youth seminar was conducted at Mawpen from May 10-12 with 85 young men and women from ten congregations in the border areas with Bangladesh. The theme was "understanding What the Will of the Lord Is," and was based on Ephesians 5:17. All participants were under the age of 40 and represent the exciting future of the work in this region of India.
April 10 marked the second graduation of students of Nichols-Roy Bible College. One student, Mr. Phlansing Ranee, was sent for further study to Union Biblical Seminary in Pune where he will earn a Master of Divinity degree. Others dedicated themselves totally to the cause of evangelism. It is our prayer that their ministry will be mightily used by God.
We have begun a special outreach to Ladrymbai, the center of coal fields in Meghalaya. The people there are known for wickedness, for eating, drinking, gambling, killing, and immorality as in the days of Noah. We are preaching the Word of God faithfully in parks and market places, and are thankful to God that more people are becoming interested in listening to the Word of God and coming to repentance. We praise God for a new church plant launched in that area on June 9. Twenty-five people have already accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior in that place. We pray for strength and growth in this church.
Please join us in praying that future leaders will be identified and equipped for service in the churches and for our outreach and missions programs. Pray also for our annual Assembly meetings which will be conducted February 6-9. Rev. G. David Cox, from the United States, and Rev. E. Bewernick, from Germany, will be our guest speakers. We pray for a great blessing during the Assembly for all believers. We also pray that sinners will be saved and set free from the bondage of the Devil.
Inspiration to hold a National Youth Conference of the Church of God in India came from a special issue of Vital Christianity magazine dedicated to youth. In it a special report was given on the International Youth Convention in the United States. It seemed such a convention focusing on youth might also strengthen the church in India. However, just a week before the conference, we did not have even half of the amount of money we needed. But the Lord filled our cups and we lacked nothing. Praise God!
Theme of the conference was "BE." This was divided into three sessions--Be Wise; Be Tall; Be On God's Side and Be a Friend. These topics were taken from the conference's theme verse, "And Jesus grew in wisdom and in stature and both in favor with God and men" (Luke 2:52). Additionally, there were three conference sessions dealing with Youth in the Family, Youth in Society, and Youth in the Church.
Speakers at the four-day conference were Rev. Rainer Klinner, pastor of the Church of God in Biebesheim, Germany; Dr. Surajit Sahoo, physician and president of Youth for Christ, India; and Rev. Susanta Patra, pastor of the Church of God in Calcutta and director of the National Missionary Fellowship of India.
An adhoc national forum of the Youth of the Church of God in India was formed consisting of two representatives from each center of Church of God work in the nation. This group will carry on planning for future national youth conventions.
Particularly historic was the adoption and affirmation of the "Puri Covenant" at the end of the conference. Among resolutions of the covenant were the following:
"By God's help, to lead holy lives, pleasing unto Him; endeavor to regularly study and mediate upon the Word of God; spend time in earnest prayer and personal devotion; regularly and actively participate in youth activities of the church and be an integral part in the life and ministry of the church; be concerned for lost souls and use every opportunity to testify and witness for Jesus; be one in the Spirit and reach our hands of fellowship to every blood washed one; be united in spirit and endeavor to present the claims of Jesus individually and corporately; help in all ways possible to further the cause of the Church of God Reformation Movement."