Simply amazed! Truly thankful!
On the Sunday evening of Labor Day weekend [usually the first Sunday of September], the Calvary Wesleyan Church’s Global Outreach Team (GOT) sponsors a fundraising event called Sundae Night at the Movies. It begins by selling "make your own sundaes," including ice cream and all the toppings. They also provided soft drinks and popcorn. Following this, a movie is presented on the large screen in our worship center. This year the movie was Home Run, a brand new movie released in the spring of2013. We receive a freewill offering at the showing. All proceeds go to a designated overseas project. This year it was the JESUS Film Partnership of Global Partners. This event has been held annually for the last three to four years with a different movie and different ministry receiving the proceeds. –reported by Pastor Dwight Mikesell of Calvary Wesleyan Church, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
I never cease to be amazed at the ways God’s people create awareness and generate resources for our mission mandate. Thanks to this church and many others that find a way to engage with Global Partners’ JESUS film ministry. If you would like for your church to get involved and invest in this life-changing ministry, you simply need to contact me, JFP Director John Croft, at email@example.com or call me at 317-903-7793. Make 2014 a year of impact through the JESUS Film Partnership.
The impact of the JESUS film upon lives is unmistakable. A 28-year-old woman lived a very miserable life as a prostitute in a village in Sierra Leone. On September 9 she watched the JESUS film in her own dialect. She was so moved and touched when she saw forgiveness and love from Jesus. She also realized she needed forgiveness and God’s love. She openly burst into tears when the altar call was made, and right there she gave her life to the Lord Jesus. She has left her life of prostitution and is now living as a light for Christ in her village.
Think of the hundreds of villages and the thousands of lives that are impacted each year by the 39 Wesleyan JESUS film teams in 22 countries. This young lady is representative of thousands who have been transformed through the power of the gospel shown in their own language.
The JESUS Film Partnership invites you to consider a life-giving gift this Christmas. Check out our Christmas catalog online for exciting opportunities to give. Maybe you would like to provide some equipment for a team or help plant seed money for a new church. If you are a church, you could provide a motorcycle truck or even consider a partnership with a team.
The need is greater than ever since the growth of this ministry has been staggering. In one year we have grown from 18 teams to 39, and that will only increase in 2014 if the giving keeps up with the demand. If you are currently partnering with us we say “Thank you!” This Christmas would be a perfect time to invite your friends to join you in support of this ministry. If you are receiving these newsletters but have not jumped into the side of giving, then this Christmas is a perfect opportunity for you to experience the blessing of giving “living water.”
Here is the link for the JESUS Film Partnership online Christmas catalog: www.wesleyan.org/jesusfilmcatalog
Dr. John Connor, former JFP director, and I are available for speaking engagements in your church or organization. To contact John Connor, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 317-414-6770. To contact me, e-mail email@example.com or call 317-903-7793.
We invite you to get further acquainted with the JESUS Film Partnership by visiting us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/jesusfilmpartnership. Like our page and then share it with your friends. We currently have 219 likes. Let’s get this page all over Facebook and see if we can double the likes by New Year’s.
Opportunities for Praise and Prayer
In His Grip,
Director of the JESUS Film Partnership
STORIES FROM THE FIELD
Click here to see a video about our JESUS film ministry in Sierra Leone. NOTE TO CHURCHES: Please consider showing this video in your church.
JESUS Film Church Plant Still Growing: The town of Nduvuibu is located on the outskirts of Bo City. About two years ago many lives were transformed through the JESUS film, with many rededications of lives. A fast growing cell group was instituted in the town as a result of the JESUS film, and it soon became a preaching point. During a recent thanksgiving service, the church members raised enough money for the purchase of 700 bricks for the construction of a church building. Groundbreaking was after the rains in October. The church membership is very zealous in their walk with the Lord.
JF Team Conducts Revival: The town of Kamabai was blessed with the JESUS film some years ago. Team members recently conducted a three-day revival service for old and new members. On the second day of the revival, a notorious traditional healer fell under the conviction of the Holy Spirit. She openly confessed and denounced her diabolic acts. She received Jesus Christ as her Lord and personal Savior. Another elderly fanatic Muslim in the town also surrendered to the lordship of Jesus Christ on the third day of the revival.
Growth of Muslim Converts: In a Muslim-dominated village, many lives were transformed through the showing of the JESUS film this year, and a growing preaching point was planted. They have outgrown their space and continue to grow. Even when it rains heavily, the people are desperate to worship and receive the good news. They have been clamouring to have the JESUS film shown again in this area.
Healing Ushers Salvation: In the village of Kamandia, a mother decided to receive Jesus Christ because of her son. This happened during the follow-up visit by a team member. The son was sick for some time. Many traditional healers were consulted with no positive result. But the fervent prayer of the team member raised the boy and gave him healing. The mother was deeply touched and moved in her heart. She felt she had no option but to give her life to the lordship of Christ. She is now happy with her son and enjoying peace.
The Power of Forgiveness: A woman in Kamaseh village watched the JESUS film in her native language. She was deeply impressed and convicted when she saw Jesus, in pain, offering forgiveness to his offenders. She realized that Jesus Christ is God’s Son, who came to forgive the sins of this world. She gave her life to the Lord during the altar call.
Hi, Director John:
Thanks for your prayers. Yes, our country right now is mourning for the devastation brought by the super typhoon Haiyan. Our GS right now was in Cebu to personally check the damage it inflicted to our churches. As of now we have no word yet from him.
General Santos city is not affected by the typhoon, but several of our churches in the central Visayas, especially Cebu suffered destruction of buildings.
I will inform you later if churches planted by JFP in the areas of Surigao and Agusan Sur are also affected. As of now, communication is not yet totally restored; we really have a hard time making connections with our pastors.
Please continue to pray for the Philippines.
Muslims for Jesus: The JESUS film team went to a Muslim village during Ramadan, in order to share Christ during this period of celebration. It was a wonderful time to see Muslims forcing their way to see and hear Jesus speaking in their own native tongue. During the five nights of screening, a total number of 857 Muslims prayed to receive Christ. At the end of the film, the team leader announced the distribution of Mandingo language disks. In one community, the team leader found himself in trouble when others were misinformed that the disks were insufficient for everybody. The team leader was forced to seek safety in a nearby police station for a smooth distribution. Report from our team on the field is that the film is being widely watched in various homes of the Muslims. Pray that they will not only watch the film but will encounter Jesus Christ. We distributed a total of 175 disks to the Muslim converts. To God be the glory!
Lifestyle Stopped/Started: A man named Elie watched the JESUS film and gave his life to Jesus, but his wife and children refused to join with him. However, in September the wife, Celine, the their two children, and Celine’s brother came to Christ. The church was very happy and was singing praises to God. After church Celine told us, “My husband was a big drinker. He was also smoking, and every day we were fighting in our house. But from the day he gave himself to Jesus, I could see that he stopped all of that lifestyle.”
In a very remote and rugged part of Costa Rica, where there are no roads and few outsiders have visited, the JESUS film team took the gospel to an indigenous Indian tribe. At one point the team crossed a powerful river by cable. As one team member said, “It was scary, but we did it! Besides, it was amazing to watch the adults, teens, and children watch the JESUS film on the screen for the first time.” The team leader reports, “We thank God for the film and the equipment. We go to some really hard-to-reach places, but ‘why’ we do it helps us to do what we do. We thank God for donors that make it happen.” During follow-up in the coming weeks, the team will be training leaders and scheduling more showings of the JESUS film.
The JESUS Film Partnership of Global Partners (JFP) is the single most effective tool for evangelism and church planting in the history of the Church. This is a bold statement but true. Every four and a half days a new Wesleyan church is planted as a result of the ministry of the JESUS film teams. If that doesn’t excite you as a follower of Christ, then I guess nothing will excite you.
With this knowledge JFP continues to train and send out new teams to use the JESUS film as their primary tool for evangelism and church planting. As I write this, I am in Bangladesh to train our newest team. This will be team number 38 with JFP. Other countries are asking if they can be considered for a team. Countries where we have teams working are asking for more teams to be trained and equipped. However, JFP is only able to add teams as funding increases.
It is true that Campaign 300 exceeded its original goals, but our goals are not to be ceilings. JFP’s objective is to follow God wherever He leads us, and He is leading JFP to new heights. The realization of the North American Wesleyan Church to the effectiveness of this unique ministry has compelled many to invest into the JFP ministry in new and generous ways. To God be the glory! Do you want to know how your church, your family, or you personally can partner with this ministry? Visit our website at www.wesleyan.org/gp/jesusfilm contact JFP Director John Croft at firstname.lastname@example.org or 317.903.7793.
This autumn a new opportunity to invest in the JESUS Film Partnership is coming to you. A Christmas catalog showing opportunities for investment in the JFP ministry will be available. The catalog will offer great Christmas giving ideas for your church, your family, and for each individual challenged to support the ongoing evangelism and church planting ministries led by our JESUS film teams. Look for more information in the forthcoming October and November NetCasters!
Prayer and Praise
For other stories and news from the fields, as well as updates about the JESUS Film Partnership, visit us on Facebook. Go to www.facebook.com/jesusfilmpartnership and click on the “Like” button. As stories, news, and pictures come in, we will post them on Facebook. Share our JFP page with your friends on Facebook.
Want to have the JESUS film story come to your church?
John Croft and Dr John Connor are available for speaking engagements in 2014. To contact John Croft e-mail email@example.com or call 317.903.7793. To contact Dr. John Connor e-mail JohnHConnor@sbcglobal.net or call 317.414.6770.
In His Grip,
Director of the JESUS Film Partnership of Global Partners
“Clap your hands, all you nations; shout to
God with cries of joy.” –Psalm 47:1 NIV
“. . . he was filled with joy because he had come to believe
in God—he and his whole household.” –Acts 16:34b NIV
As I travel from country to country, I am thrilled by the stories of great joy in those who have believed on the Lord Jesus Christ and have been saved. Stories like a woman in northern Mozambique who was a witch. She is now worshiping in a Wesleyan church. Or a young lady in Nepal who was a Maoist (follower of Maoism), but when the JESUS film was shown in her village, she was one of 15 who responded. She now has the joy of Christ in her heart and is part of a new church plant. Or Tamba, the 50-year-old Liberian man, who had been a drug addict for most of his adult life. He responded to the invitation following the JESUS film and testified, “When I gave my life to the Lord, the weight I felt on my head disappeared.” Their cup of joy is full and running over. How about your cup and my cup? Is it full and running over? Do others see and know of our joy?
New JESUS film teams continue to be added.
These new teams desperately need your covering of prayer. They are in some of the more difficult regions of the world and face much opposition.
How is all this possible? With God all things are possible! He has inspired a whole new demographic of donors who have decided that evangelism and church planting are essential to fulfilling the Great Commission. Are you one who believes that missions is the central theme of the Bible? If so, and you are not yet a partner, then we invite you to join this ministry as a partner with the teams of evangelists and church planters around the world. If you are already a partner, we thank you for making this ministry possible by allowing God to use you and your resources.
With today’s technology giving has been made easier. You can go to http://www.wesleyan.org/gp/jesusfilm and under the picture, click on the words “Give to JFP now.” This will enable you to give online through our secure sight. Or, of course, you may prefer the old-fashioned way of sending in a check. That is how I still do it! Send a check to Global Partners, PO Box 50434, Indianapolis, IN 46250. Make the check out to Global Partners and write “JFP” in the memo. I will be happy to answer any of your giving questions. E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If I cannot answer your questions, I know someone who can.
I also invite you to partner with this ministry in prayer. The success and effectiveness of this ministry is not in the wisdom or efforts of men but in the grace and mercy of our Lord. Below are some things that I invite you to pray about in your time alone with God.
Help us get the word out!
Remember to follow JFP on Facebook at www.facebook.com/jesusfilmpartnership and share the page and stories with your Facebook friends. Also help JFP by sharing this NetCaster newsletter with your local church, small groups, family, and friends.
In His Grip,
Director of the JESUS Film Partnership of Global Partners
STORIES FROM THE FIELD
Sanctuary for Refugees: On day 6 of July of 2013, we went to Maratane refugee center, to show the JESUS film. Forty refugees from Congo and other places received Jesus Christ. As a result, we started a new Wesleyan church there. The number of new believers is growing daily. Now we are praying for $700 to build the church.
–reported by Pastor Abel Nove, Nampula, Mozambique
(Names have been changed or omitted for security reasons.)
Family Ties: We showed the JESUS film at a place named Jhgidgeni. People who came to watch the JESUS film were happy about the opportunity. Before starting the film, we preached the gospel of Christ so as to help them know who Christ is and what He did for us. People within this district had never heard about Jesus, so we thought they would get all the life story of Christ through this film and the sacrifices He had given for us to make us apart from the sin. The people were watching it with the great joy, and we also could see tears on each face at the time when Christ was crucified for us. Everybody watching the film could feel His great love and care towards us.
At the completion of the film, everyone had a positive response. They shared how they liked the film and how they really appreciate Christ. There were many people who accepted Christ and among them was a couple with a two-year-old daughter who had gotten married five years before. They had an arranged marriage and were not happy being together. The husband used to get drunk every day and would beat his wife. They are from a Hindu background, so they live separately. The husband never gave her love happily. He used to spend all the money with his friends and never bought anything for home.
We heard these things from his wife, so we invited him to come to watch the JESUS film, and out of respect he came to watch the film. Thanks be to God, after watching the JESUS film, he had a positive change. He came to realize his mistakes, and his wife also forgave him. After seeing the JESUS film, he and his wife accepted Jesus Christ. Thanks to Jesus for such a great change in their lives. After accepting Christ, he never repeated those days. In fact, they are happily together and happy being in Christ. Praise the Lord!
Lepers Come to Jesus!: We showed the JESUS Film is a place where many people were gathered to watch the film, giving a warm response to our request. Among them was an Indian couple that had suffered from the disease of leprosy, and they could not perform any of the works. Their hands are wounded since many years of the disease. Instead they sit on the street and beg with other people hoping to earn 400-500 Nepali Rupee that they use to buy food for their family. They have two sons and a daughter. They are doing the same thing for many years. Many people abuse them and because they can do nothing, they have become use to tolerating it.
In the JESUS film, it showed where the people were being dominated by other people, but only The Christ was there for them and with this they were touched. And after watching the JESUS film, this couple accepted Jesus and they are happy being in Christ. Before, they used to tolerate everything and used to think they were worthless, but now they realized they too are precious in the eyes of God. They are happy being in Christ, and they have become an example among other people. They are physically dead and cannot perform anything, but they are happy to be spiritually alive. The have started to go church, and the church has provided them a job to look after the church. They are also able to stay within the church compound. They are very much thankful to Jesus for His love. Thanks to Jesus for such a great miracle in their life. Praise the Lord!
(Names have been changed or omitted for security reasons.)
The Truth Will Set You Free: I grew up in tribal religious beliefs. I am married with two children. Eighty-five percent of the people in our village are Christian by name. Many times, from various churches, people would come to evangelize my family. But I had no interest to turn to Christ because I could not see or feel that our life in tribal religion was any different from the Christians in my village. Christians in my village still committed acts contrary to the Word of God.
One time I was visiting my in-laws, and I was surprised to discover in this very remote village an Indonesian Wesleyan church. I noticed that this congregation and my in-laws, were much different from the Christians I knew back in my hometown. They told me about how the JESUS Film had come to their village and that was where they had learned about Jesus. I invited the film team to conduct preaching of the gospel to my family. The team showed the film and opened our understanding that a life in Christ begins with repentance and is led by the Holy Spirit.
Christians who repent and live a Spirit-led life will be able to walk with God with miracles and spiritual experiences, which is awesome.
My family and I made the decision to accept the Lord Jesus as our Lord and Savior. Now we have worship service and 18 new believers are a part of this new church. We thank the Lord that the government gave us permission to have the Wesleyan church in our village.
Sowing on Hard Soil: One of our JESUS film teams has been working in Malawi’s Lilongwe Peri—urban and rural areas. They are heavily populated and predominantly poor multireligious communities with Catholic and Muslim predominance. When we did our survey earlier this year, we concluded that the ground was rich for the harvest and that this would be one of our most exciting experiences since the JESUS film is most often viewed as a rare opportunity for rural communities. Things didn’t work out that way. This was the driest ground we have ever gone to in recent years. The attendance and response was far below our projections. With an average of 2,000 households in each of the communities we have visited so far, we anticipated attendances above 1,000. We discovered that the religious and social impact of Islam in the area is evidently having a telling effect on evangelistic efforts. Nevertheless, the Word is being preached.
Our consolation on this outreach is one of the prominent well-to-do people in the area. Unexpectedly, as a recognized Muslim, he gladly received us and our ministry. He accommodated us in his son’s home; his son is not a Muslim and is in college. He made us his “indirect guests,” telling fellow Muslims that we were being entertained at the request of his son. Each evening after the show, he would come to the flat and over a cup of tea we would talk about Jesus and Mohammed. We mentioned to him that from the little we knew about the Quran, the superiority of Jesus is recognized, especially in His authority over all creation and as the One who will judge the world at the close of the ages.
By the time we were leaving the area, the man had not made any personal commitment to Christ, but he requested for us to leave him Bible verses that would help him arrive at an informed decision. We obliged and pledged more help from our local pastor there. We were able to leave a Bible study that was being attended by about nine to sixteen people but he is not one of them for fear of his Muslim brotherhood. He has, however, remained a fervent seeker and our prayers are for him to be found by the Messiah who He seeks. Our conclusion is that he is more afraid of the reprisals that may follow his conversion, and we are praying for him. We believe his coming into the faith will be a major breakthrough for the church in the area. Pray for him.
Follow-up Brings Revival: The country is currently experiencing heavy rains, with some strong winds. The JFP members are currently doing follow-up within their respective areas as the weather permits. One notable place visited by one team member is a Muslim community. This chiefdom is well known for occult and demonic practices. There are also other social challenges, such as poor roads and sanitation in this region.
Two years ago the JESUS film was shown for several days in this village and its surrounding villages. After the film’s showing, a school and local church were set up for new converts. In May 2013, there was a one-month follow-up visit to this region. This follow-up visit has tremendously helped to strengthen the Wesleyan church and school in this Muslim dominated chiefdom.
The film was again shown in the language of the people. The membership is improving and converts have been strengthened in their faith. The church has seen revival with baptisms taking place. Our JESUS film team member has identified with the needs of the people, such as digging wells, teaching, and conducting morning devotions in the school. This brought in even more converts. It further helped him as he prayed for the sick and the demon possessed. The Lord has answered his prayers. The converts are very much thrilled and motivated in the Lord.
Also, team members in other areas in the north and south/east are working to strengthen, give hope, and encouragement to new converts and churches newly planted.
Daughter of Imam and Nine Others Denied Baptism: After a month of baptismal classes, a daughter of an Imam and nine other Muslim converts were refused baptism in the about mentioned village. The new converts, including the daughter of the imam, were very much thrilled and prepared for the baptism. However, on the day for the baptism, their parents, including the imam vehemently refused their baptism. They were threatened with a curse being placed on them if they were baptized. It is a sad story, but the seed of the good news has been planted and will surely grow.
Testimony of Joy: A Muslim girl was deeply touched and moved by the power of the Holy Spirit when she watched the JESUS film in her native language. She accepted Christ and was baptized. Her life now speaks as a testimony to other family members and friends. The joy and happiness she experiences makes her admirable to all. Many young ones in the family are craving to share the same experience.