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GMI World
A Publication of Global Mapping International

Serving Evangelical Ministry Leaders Around the World

Winter/Spring 2003


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Mission Views and News

India - 200 years after William Carey

The 200 YEARS SINCE William Carey, the great Baptist pioneer, ministered in India have been remarkable. Johnstone and Mandryk of Operation World 2001 state, "The Holy Spirit has used countless thousands of Indian and expatriate workers to affect India for good in education, health, challenging social wrongs, and to plant over 300,000 churches."

India is a complex mission field with incredible ethnic, cultural, and geographic diversity; a nation of some 600,000 villages and over 4,000 people groups. Most of India's churches are in the south and northeast parts of the country, but this is changing. Although the north and west remain largely unreached, with hundreds of millions of people having never heard the good news of Jesus Christ, exciting progress is being seen even in these areas.

God is raising up tens of thousands of Indian missionaries today to minister to these unreached peoples. Broad cooperative missions efforts are underway, backed by committed prayer networks. In the midst of increasing persecution, Christians are sacrificially serving in the name of Jesus throughout the country.

How do we appropriately partner with our Indian brothers and sisters today in carrying out God's mission in this great land? One way is by providing technical expertise and information resources to help Indian leaders better see the real ministry situation. Seeing, in a clear, integrated, and accurate manner, is essential to gain crucial insights, to wisely plan and manage, and to effectively mobilize the Body.

Global Mapping International (GMI) participates in a multiagency project called "LIGHT India." Bob Waymire (president of LIGHT International and founder of GMI) leads the project, which provides detailed digital mapping coverage of the whole country in support of major church-planting efforts there. GMI integrates huge geographic and statistical databases and provides consulting and training resources. Indian church leaders, researchers, and technologists play essential roles in the project as well.

Church-planting strategists in India envision a church within practical and cultural distance of every person, including a church in every village and city neighborhood.

One individual who travels to India on a regular basis to track these developments observes, "There are encouraging signs that strong church-planting networks are springing up all over the country. Some are focusing on specific geopolitical areas, others on specific people groups and languages, and still others are focused on a specific world view or religion in this vast country."

Maps showing the presence or absence of churches are critical planning and mobilization tools for the strategists leading these saturation church planting networks.

Two hundred years have passed since William Carey's vision enabled him to participate in a wondrous outpouring of God's blessing in India. This vision for evangelization of India has been rekindled by national and international believers alike. Pray with us for the light of God's blessing and grace to be poured out upon all the peoples of India.

One in 55 people in India is an evangelical Christian. At its current growth rate, the evangelical Church in India will double in size by 2017.

-derived from Operation World 2001

GMI partners with other specialized ministries to help Indian leaders in church planting efforts.

GMI World       Winter/Spring 2003      Page 1

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