Thursday, January 24, 2013

Preparing to Leave Kolkata

It is almost 10:30 pm here in Kolkata as I write this and reflect on what has been a pretty amazing few days.  Today our work of teaching at a Pastor's conference came to an end with all of our pastors committing to deepening their walk with Christ (about 200), about 9 committing to be missionaries to other parts of the country and the world, and more than 100 committing to planting a new church in the next 12 months.  If only half of the commitments are honored, there will be an amazing movement of God in the Kolkata, West Bengal area of India and in the world.  AIM, Global Advance and other partners also gave away at least a dozen bicycles that went to new pastors in rural villages as transportation for pastors starting their own new church starts.  Additionally, some 8-10 young ladies received sewing Machines to help their families move towards

After an amazing day, we headed to get some "American" food at a local KFC.  Man it was good to have some fried chicken!  Not quite the same as home, but after a week of curry and other Indian favorites 3x a day, it was a welcome treat.  After our late lunch, the team split up to do about an hour and a half of site seeing.  One part of the team went to Mother Teresa's home and Joseph and I went to the Victoria Palace area and shot some photos and collected my first international Geocache.

It was a great day.  It is interesting to see how God can use a team Texans and native Indians to empower, equip and deploy new pastors and strengthen more seasoned ones.  I can't wait to see what happens next in Lucknow, India.  There, Dr. Holland, Dr. Grant, Jason and I will be assisting other Global Advance staff work on a sustainability program for the area.  Afterwards, while Global Advance continues its work with other partners in the area, Henry, David and I will visit some local churches and see where and how we can help through small group discussions and just being present with these men and women. Then we will explore Lucknow for a few hours and prepare for our next stop.

This does mean that parts of our team are going home in the morning and we will meet up with new team members and hosts.  So we are saying Goodbye for now to James, Finny, and Joseph...great
new acquaintances that I met on the trip so far.

I am excited about meeting the newest members of the team and seeing more of India and reaching more pastors and missionaries.  Keep the prayers coming and we will check in with you all after we land in our new destination tomorrow.

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