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Drawing the Nets

Rich and Jo Ann Davis on November 15, 2006

We are ready to draw the nets We are ready to draw the nets

Big Day for New Churches

Jo Ann and I are almost finished with our church planting project here in India and happy about how it's going. We are planning on 24 congregations meeting for the first time as large groups this Sunday (Nov 19). Up to this point we have only had cell groups meeting. These large groups won't be "organized" officially on Sunday, but once the budding congregations have been taught about the church, gone through their doctrinal statement and approved their constitution, they will organize. We are projecting that they could organize before the end of the year.

Our goal is to have each large group meet on Sunday with an average of 50 adult believers attending. Some will go over that this Sunday, and others will come in under it.

We just finished preparing the November report on 20 village congregations that will gather for the first time here in the outskirts of Chennai. 72 is the average attendance in the cell groups for the Chennai villages (40 adults and 32 children in each village or neighborhood).

No matter what the number, we are praising the Lord. It comes down to 24 recognizable local NT churches being established in about 9 months in the villages and neighborhoods of southern India. That's about how long it takes for a human baby to be born.

The primary reason for this quick newsletter is that you might pray fervently during the next few days asking that the Lord be glorified in an unusual way as the next big step is taken in the formation of these 24 churches. You may enjoy looking at our newest Photo Album called "Drawing the Nets" showing both classes in the School of Missions.

Attempting Great Things for God Attempting Great Things for God

Big Vision by Indian Church Planters

As we were ending our last teaching section in the School of Missions (SOM) in Pondicherry, we witnessed the Lord working in the hearts of our students and the leader. I returned from lunch to find the SOM coordinator, Rishie David, working with some of the church planters projecting how the church planting movement might grow by God's grace. I had not asked them to do this. The vision and the desire came straight from the Lord. Without going into unnecessary detail, they had calculated how to reach the entire present day population of India (1.3 billion people) within the next ten years!

Yes, it's easy to do all kinds of things with numbers. But what is exciting to us is that they truly have the vision and desire to attempt great things for God. That, of course, is what William Carey is so famous for preaching;

Attempt Great Things for God

Expect Great Things from God

We encourage you to see the pictures of Rishie and the students working on that vision in the Photo Gallery in the album "Drawing the Nets".

New Boats for Those Hit by the 2004 Tsumani New Boats for Those Hit by the 2004 Tsumani

Big Launch Day

Another very big day is coming up on Friday, November 24 as we celebrate graduation day for the students in the School of Missions. We are launching the students out to the harvest fields with the Lord at their side. All of the students from both locations of the SOM (Chennai & Pondicherry) will spend all next week in camp where we will be doing concentrated teaching on the details of organizing the churches. We will go over the doctrinal statement that we are recommending as well as a recommended constitution, besides other classes to polish off their training.

Then after the graduation ceremony, we will be going to the fishing village, Ennor, to launch a new boat. This is the project that we were working on since the Tsunami hit India at Christmas time in 2004.

Jo Ann and I will leave India on Dec 10 to will spend Christmas with our girls and grandchildren in California. Then we head back to Lima on January 4 to return to our ministries there. From Lima we will also be actively involved in our responsibilities as the ABWE executive director for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and Christmas time. We appreciate all of you more than we can say and trust that you are also rejoicing at the many blessings that the Lord has showered on us this year.