USA (MNN) — Revelation 7:9 says, “There before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people, and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb.”
Unfortunately, as Christians, we know there is much work left to be done. There are many people groups who have yet to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
President and CEO of Mission India of Grand Rapids, Michigan Dave Stravers says, “India has a couple thousand ethnic groups that have not yet received the Gospel. So we’re preparing for the return of Christ by bringing the Gospel to India through indigenous workers in India who are eager to do this and just need a few resources to help in doing it.”
Mission India uses a variety of outreaches to do that. “We’re doing everything we can to bring the name of Jesus to them through children’s ministries, through ministries to the poorest of the poor, through church planting and evangelism. The fantastic news is that people there are now, for the first time, very open to receiving this Good News,” Stravers says.
Growth is underway for Mission India. To help continue that growth for years to come, the ministry has hired a new U.S. president to help facilitate that growth. Todd VanEk was approved unanimously to fill those duties. According to Stravers, “Todd will be in charge of our U.S.A. messaging [and] our U.S.A. operations. I’m still overseeing the organization on behalf of our board. I’ll be more involved with our finances and ministry in India and Todd will be our spokesperson.”
That voice is needed because many in the U.S. don’t understand what’s happening in India. “We often think here in America that we’re losing the battle. It seems like we have these setbacks in our own culture. And even though it’s predominately Hindu and Muslim in religion, Jesus is winning incredible battles in India. So many people are coming to know Him.”
VanEk has served as a pastor of three churches over the last 12 years. He has been an advocate for India for more than 10 years, both through church leadership and personally, as he has a child from India.
Stravers says this appointment to president will also position VanEk to assume more leadership at Mission India. “As I get up there in the years and I think about what’s going to be happening, we’re looking for Todd to transition to even more leadership in the organization.” VanEK will assume his duties September 2.
Stravers is asking you to pray for Christians in India. “Because of the great growth of the church there, there’s quite a bit of persecution and push-back from Hindus and Muslims. And so we ask for prayer for courage.”