Global Worship Report Vol. 2, #8


Global Worship Report Vol. 2, #9 August, 2000

August, 2000
Edited by Frank Fortunato fort@usa.om.org
Coordinator, AD2000 Worship and Arts Network

Greetings, Worship and Arts Friends.

  1. China: Young woman blesses the nation with worship songs
  2. Vietnam: Secret Believers worship through radio gatherings
  3. Kazakhstan: The Silk Road 2000 Festival (Featured story this issue)
  4. Ministry tools from Galcom
  5. David Garrett on indigenous worship
  6. Get involved
  7. Humor: Those missionaries must all be in sin


1. CHINA: YOUNG WOMAN BLESSES THE NATION WITH WORSHIP SONGS:

Lu Xiaomin, aged 20 at the time, had a powerful encounter with the Holy Spirit in the late 1980s. One night shortly afterward, Lu was so filled with joy that she couldn't sleep. Then the words and melody of a Christian song came into her mind. Hesitantly, because she had no musical training, she told some of the leaders in her house-church community. They encouraged her to sing the songs directly into a cassette recorder. She started to do so, and by 1998 had recorded some 440 of them. They had not only been printed and distributed but also were being sung in house churches all over China. By early 2000 the number of songs exceeded 700 with no end in sight to the astonishing inspiration. Church fellowship leaders who know many of her songs by heart mentioned that Lu's songs had encouraged them at crucial times in their Christina lives. In a sure sign of God's desire to continue the revival in China, some of Lu's songs are now being sung in the Three-Self churches whose leaders reject house churches.

(Excerpted from an article by David Aikman, in Charisma Magazine, August 2000.)


2. VIETNAM: SECRET BELIEVERS" WORSHIP THROUGH RADIO GATHERINGS:

(The following story is so incredible, we felt it important to send it out again. It demonstrates one of the powerful ways that God is building his church and keeping people strong in persecuted areas. Christian radio penetrates through the closed areas where pastors and Christian workers cannot reach by normal methods).

Vietnamese church leaders visited a group of 200 "secret believers" in a remote village in Vietnam. No one knew about the believers until they contacted a religious broadcaster asking for a visit. Christian leaders traveled five days through a jungle to reach the village. It seems the villagers all meet together for worship, tuning into Christian radio programs. "The response to the daily and Sabbath broadcasts have been far beyond anything originally expected," one church leader said. "There are congregations worshipping in parts of the country where the Church has never had members before."

(As reported in Religion Today, August 24, 1998.)


3. KAZAKHSTAN: THE SILK ROAD 2000 FESTIVAL

"Shatahn! Shatahn! Shatahn, Kazakhstan!" These words, which in English mean "Shine, Kazakhstan", thundered upward from the city of Almaty's outdoor stadium, where a crowd of 18,000 Christians gathered to bless this Central Asian country which, until 1991, had been a part of the former Soviet Union.

The stadium event, held in late July, was the culmination of a five-day Christian festival called Silk Road 2000. Dr. Paul Choi, a scholar in Muslim evangelism asserted, "This is the first time in Islam's fourteen hundred year history that a Christian event of this magnitude has happened within the Muslim sphere of influence."

Keynote speaker, Luis Bush, International Director of "A.D.2000 and Beyond", said, "The Silk Road 2000 Festival is a watershed event. It has the potential to launch a powerful evangelistic movement all across Central Asia and into Turkey."

Silk Road 2000 was a multi-track happening involving praise and worship gatherings, educational seminars, medical and dental mobile clinics, economic development consultations, and cultural events. It was a vision simultaneously given by God to Korean believers in both Korea and North America."

Kiho Lee, is one of the nine, earnest, young men from Korea, in whom the germ of that vision was birthed. In 1998, the group, led by Kiho, who is a well-known songwriter and worship leader, enlisted a prayer team of 10,000 intercessors to support their fourteenth journey, by four-wheel-drive vehicles, along the entire length of the old Silk Road. As they traveled, they visited the work of more than 100 missionaries, absorbed cultures, tasted spiritual hunger, were touched by human need, prayed fervently, and listened for what God would say to them. By the time their pilgrimage was over, they had heard from God, and the Silk Road 2000 Festival idea was alive in them.

Central Asia, where much of the Silk Road is located, is populated largely by Turkic peoples. Although there are differing local customs and languages among the many people groups who live in this region of Asia, there are also fundamental similarities rooted in their common Turkic background. Among those similarities is a linguistic link. For westerners, it may be surprising to learn that the Korean language is a Turkic language. That connection makes it easy for Koreans to learn the languages of Central Asia. This reality, along with the knowledge that Korea is the only substantially evangelized country among the Turkic nations, is accepted by Korean Christians as a missionary mandate from God to win the peoples along the Silk Road to Jesus Christ.

The festival was attended by hundreds of Korean-Americans, Korean-Canadians, and by 2000 South Koreans, all of whom flew in chartered planes from Seoul to Almaty. Many of them were in leadership roles at the festival, and hundreds more participated in short-term mission projects throughout Central Asia after the close of the festival.

Scores of 'tent making' Korean Christians came to the festival from all over Central Asia, as well as from India, Pakistan, Nepal, Turkey and other parts of Asia, the Middle East, and Europe. "When they were joined by thousands of local Kazaks, Russians, Uighurs, and other ethnic groups from Kazakhstan, the Festival became a kind of 'Central Asian Pentecost' . . . a supernatural bonding together of diverse national and linguistic peoples, spirit-filled, energized, and commissioned to witness to the love and Lordship of Jesus Christ.

Local practitioners of occultist religions carried out on-site satanic rituals to curse the festival; but the accumulated power of 2 years worth of prayer was too strong. Within the conference, in spite of ethnic and linguistic diversity, there was complete harmony. Even the initially suspicious and stern police brigade at the stadium events relaxed and became friendly as delegates smiled at them, shook their hands, prayed for and applauded them, and then left the stadium spotlessly clean.

The soul stirring capstone experience of Silk Road 2000 came when the government's non-Christian Minister of Religious Affairs, who came to the stadium to monitor the celebration for possible infractions, was so deeply moved by the experience, that, at the end of the service, he made a public decision to receive Jesus Christ as his Savior.

Evangelism was not the immediate objective of Silk Road 2000. The primary objective was to demonstrate God's love for the people of Kazakhstan, and to bring the Kazakhstan Christians together for support and encouragement. Christian leaders believe festivals like this one, where massive public demonstrations of love and blessing, and acts of humble service toward non-Christians take place, will prove to be an effective means of witnessing convincingly to the character of Jesus Christ and His Good News. It's possible that, in the aftermath of this festival, Kazakhstan could become the launching pad from which all of Central Asia will find, and come to know, the God revealed in Jesus Christ. "Shine Kazakhstan!"

(Excerpted from an article from Assist Communications. The report featured the first hand observation and reporting by Norm and Cher Nelson, of the international radio broadcast and compassion ministry, Life At Its Best. The Nelsons were the only two western media representatives invited to participate in this amazing event. To get the full report, send email to assistcomm@cs.com or LAIB@CompassionRadio.com)


4. MINISTRY TOOLS FROM GALCOM

One of the truly remarkable organizations God has raised up in recent years is Galcom. Galcom uses a team of engineers who have a keen eye to capture technology and redeem it for the kingdom. Here are a few of the remarkable tools available from Galcom. You can contact them at Galcom@galcom.org or visit their web site: www.galcom.org.<>

  1. LANGUAGE COMMUNICATION CENTER This is a portable kiosk for use at world fairs, exhibitions and events such as the Olympics. It has a built in printer and computer phone system with four receivers, each of which can play back a five to seven minute Gospel message in up to 100 different languages. At the end of the message, the listener has the option of getting a printout of the message in his/her mother tongue. At the bottom of the message, there is the name of an organization that can do follow up.
  2. SOLAR PA SYSTEM These systems have a handy shoulder strap for portability and convenience. They come with a built in power pack which can be charged up by direct sunlight or by an incandescent light bulb so there is no need for additional batteries.
  3. "GLORIA" MICROCHIP MUSIC PLAYBACK SYSTEM Close to 600 hymns are available at the touch of a button. The case is the size of a small lunch box with a calculator pad on top. You may choose any one of nine different natural sounding instruments for accompaniment as well as the key and tempo of your choice. This is an ideal tool for church meetings or prayer groups of 10 to 1000 people.
  4. "SAINT" SATELLITE TRANSCEIVER This unit can be used to communicate from a main base in, e.g., North America or Europe, to almost anywhere in the world in approximately two hours (much faster than the mail service). The unit fits into a flight case and can run on solar,110VAC or 220VAC . The operators must have a Ham operating license but there is no cost for air time. There is nothing like this in the world. It can be operated off a regular personal computer or even a lap top computer.
  5. SPEECH TRANSLATION UNIT Approximately five cubic inches, this unit has a selection of frequencies between 88 MHz and 108 MHz as well as 72 MHz on which to broadcast. Depending on the frequency, it can cover an area approximately as large as a dome stadium. It comes with a microphone so that you can do simultaneous translation at multi-lingual events. You can use any number of units at one conference. Special FM radio receivers with headphones are available as well.


5. DAVID GARRETT ON INDIGENOUS WORSHIP:

(New Zealander David Garrett continues to focus God's people on indigenous worship. In many ways this article reflects the purpose of the GWR).

"God has times for everything, time for blessing and time for judgment. To Sodom and Gomorrah came a time when God said "enough"... and judgment came. To answer the cries of the descendants of Jacob in Egypt came Moses who as an eighty-year-old was at last readied to lead God's people out of the land of bondage into the land of promise.

Today I feel the cry is going up to heaven again, the Indigenous and Ethnic peoples of the earth are looking for a place to put their feet, a place of identity. God is saying, "I have heard their cry I have seen their distress I am coming down to deliver them." In the right time and under the right spirit Moses saw the gods of Egypt succumb to the God of Israel and suffer a defeat they have probably never recovered from.

When God created the uniqueness of the different people groups he gave them all different treasures, sounds, dances, rhythms, musical instruments...all used in their celebrations and festivals. Over centuries and thousands of years these "treasures" have been, in many situations, used as tools to worship Satan. During the past 10-15 years a stirring has risen in the hearts of the "ethnos" of the earth. A stir for their land, their place, their own .....Many have sought to return to the ways of their ancestors and to the gods they served. I have however wondered if the real cry is one put into the hearts of the people to return to the true God even though they may not recognize it as such.

Because Satan has stolen so many of the treasures for his worship many of these sounds, dances, instruments...are seen in themselves as being evil. They are only associated with that which is demonicƒ_ŬIn our enthusiasm we need to be very aware of this so that we allow God to untie the chains through the revelation of his Spirit. We should ask the questions, "can this be redeemed, if so, when and how?". We have made many mistakes through our ignorance in the past. Let us be careful to allow the Holy Spirit show the way.

In many cases as representatives of those who closed the door on the cultural expressions of the people, God will merely require us to, in humility, open it again and stand aside...God is saying today, "Let my People Go. In Exodus 12 when Pharoah released the Israelites, Moses insisted "they must bring their flocks and herds, their cattle and sheep", (their dances and songs, their instruments, languages and colorful garments), for they won't know until they get there what they need to worship me"

(Excerpted from an email from David Garrett. For the complete article on "Let my people go" and for information about ordering a recently-completed video that deals with the themes of the above excerpts, (also called "Let my people go") email David Garrett at 75231.2321@compuserve.com.)


6. GET INVOLVED:

Perhaps the article about from Garrett has stirred you to get involved in some way helping to do your part to see indigenous worship released in the peoples of the earth. Perhaps you would like to get involved personally or as a group in a cross-cultural assignment.

Listed below are several different ways that people can be used to share the Gospel using the fine arts as a starting point. These ways can also be used to touch the lives of fine arts professionals with the Good News.

  1. FOREIGN EXPERT-a teaching position for those with a high level of education and experience. These positions are perfect opportunities for sabbaticals and usually last from one semester to two years depending on the needs of the host school and the time frame available to the visiting professor.
  2. STUDENT-an opportunity to study both language and a specific area in the fine arts at a university or conservatory setting. These positions allow for the developing of close relationships with national fine arts students and teachers.
  3. EXCHANGE TEAM-this opportunity can take many different forms as follows:
    1. Performance groups that also learn from the nationals through cross-cultural experiences. These groups can spend up to a month at a school sharing their knowledge and learning about indigenous art.
    2. Teacher training units that lecture on specialty topics and/or give master classes.
    3. Professional training teams that come with a specific objective like putting together a western opera performance by local singers..
    4. Performance groups that combine prayer walking with such specialized events as Charity concerts. Christmas is also becoming a very good time to perform in a public setting like a shopping mall.
  4. ETHNOMUSICOLOGY-this opportunity impacts the church planting movement among unreached people groups. Persons interested in this type of position need to have some training in the new field of Christian ethnomusicology so that they can carry out research and encourage the young tribal Christians to use their indigenous music in worship, praise, and evangelism.
  5. TENTMAKER-Opportunities exist for fine arts professionals to share their faith as tentmakers. Earning their living through their fine arts skills.

(The above opportunities are excerpted from email from George H. McDow, Fine Arts Coordinator, East Asia-IMB. geo@chmai.loxinfo.co.th)


7. HUMOR: THOSE MISSIONARIES MUST ALL BE IN SIN:

Roberta King, respected ethnomusicologist, professor at Fuller, and past music missionary to Africa visited an energetic church in Africa. As in so many parts of Africa, the worship not only included singing, but hand clapping, movement, and dancing. As the worship began, Roberta did what was natural to her. She joined in and was soon singing, clapping and dancing. There were other missionaries present. They were all silent and stiff. Later the Africans expressed great concern for these missionaries and wanted to know how they could be prayed for. Their concern was not for the missionary that was dancing but for all those that were not. They suspected deep sin in the lives of the missionaries. In their culture, the only believers that did not dance in church were those in sin!!

(To trace the origin of the story, and to find out about articles and books available from Roberta King, email her at Rking@fuller.edu)


Click here for information on subscribing to the Global<> Worship Report.

Back to the Worship & The Arts Network Home Page
Back to the AD2000 Home Page

Webmaster
10/2/00