They received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so. Acts 17:11
The greatest measure of success is when the nationals get excited for the training and begin to lead the training. That was the experience during the August trip to the Dominican Republic. John and Mary Pabst from Canal Winchester, Ohio are the missionaries that invited the Orality Institute down for the initial training in May of 2019. That was the first time that the Lantigua family had been introduced to the oral style of teaching the scriptures.
Daniel Lantigua became excited about the possibilities of how this could be used in an immigrant community with unruly youth. The youth were so affected by the training that they began to talk about God in their school classroom. Their teacher was so amazed at the change in her students that she went to observe these classes for herself. The parents also noticed a change in their own kids, and they began attending the classes to learn the stories. News of this transformation began spreading among the members of the community and among the pastors.
On this second trip, many pastors were interested in learning about this training. Instead of hosting one or two classes for the week, they had scheduled four. That was only possible because both Kevin and Paul went on the trip. Two classes were held in the afternoon and two others were held in the evening. The new students were enthusiastic, but better yet was the fact that Daniel and his son Darriel did most of the teaching. They knew the training well enough to empower their own people with this strategy.
Since our departure, the future teachers met and planned for the start of their classes. They will begin with six teachers in three regions.
The international excitement for training in God’s Word has been present since the classes began in Uganda in 2009. When we have introduced this training in Africa, India, Mexico, Ecuador, and the Caribbean the training has been enthusiastically welcomed. In each place, the nationals adopted the training and began teaching others.
The biggest challenge has been communication of this ministry in the United States. Some have understood and have been standing alongside of our work for the past 3 years, but many others are unaware of how the training works, where the growth has been taking place, and what role the Orality Institute has in assisting nationals with a tool for discipleship.
A way to build this awareness in the US is through the two events held on Friday, October 15th. The second annual Grand Canyon hike led by Pastor Paul Kneeland still has a short window of time left to sign up. Paul’s email is email@example.com. The second event will be a one-hundred-mile Minneapolis bike ride. That ride will begin and end at Emmaus Lutheran in Bloomington and will be a tour of the many bike trails around the cities. Pastor Kevin Olson will lead that trip. If interested contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The physical efforts that we put out on these trips parallel the effort we and our students make to bring God’s Word to the world. It is not easy to hike 20 miles in a desert. It takes endurance to bike 100 miles, but the perseverance that we need is also a gift from God. May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 15:5-6
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