Dynamic Downtown Worship in the Anglican Tradition

David Richardson’s Report on St. Michael’s 4th Healing Prayer Mission

First, thank you St. Michaels’ for the wonderful prayers, the financial support and the love that we all felt so deeply that was poured out to make India Mission 2016 such a success. Bishop Dutta continues to amaze me personally with his heart and leadership for the poor and needy in India. St. Michaels’ Church has been such a significant part of God’s plan for the Diocese of Durgapur and I continue to see the amazing residual benefit from your prayers and the financial contributions that you have made. It is important to understand that when Bishop Probal Dutta proclaims his vision to support the needs of the people in his Diocese, it gets done!  

The Bishop’s vision is not just a dream but a proclamation of his heart, and linked with it is his strong faith to be obedient to God’s call and purpose for his life. It is through this

profound faith and obedience to what Jesus spoke in the Gospel of Matthew 25: 40 that I believe God has blessed the Bishop’s ministry so much. 40 And the King will answer them, Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these brothers, you did it to me.

The reality is that in India you really can’t minister to the people without churches, safe houses, hostels and other buildings to draw the people into the ministry. Build a church for people to worship and hundreds and even thousands of people will come; and through Bishop Dutta’s ministry, Jesus Christ will be there waiting for them. You can count on it!

I believe a sign of a healthy ministry is when a village or community becomes self-evangelized, with less dependence on short term missionaries to discover Jesus, and more dependence to feed and grow their knowledge about Jesus. This is what I experienced this year in Malda, Coonor and Sarenga. Thousands are being baptized and they all were thirsty and hungry for more Jesus.

God also blessed me this year as I witnessed how he used the heart and gifts of the new team members. I saw Mary Lois’ heart poured out to the people and her sincere reluctance to let go from every touch and embrace. Tom Acker’s heart blessed the children at the compound and the people in Saregna with his ministry for music. John Kern was delayed in his travels and arrived at the Diocesan compound while the rest of the team was ministering in Malda. God put him to work from the minute he hit the Bishop’s compound. As John shared his experience with the Bishop and St. Michaels’ School, you could feel his passion for the “least of these” and his tremendous determination to use his legal skills and connections to make life a safer and better place for the “least of these.” Burwell, the youngest of our team, drew crowds of young people through his passion for sports and proclaimed Christ the Healer and Redeemer in a powerful way through his first public and personal testimony to over 2500 people at our last Festival of Hope in Sarenga. Perhaps God is tugging at your heart to go on Mission to India? Just say yes and see how the Holy Spirit chooses to use you to bless and be blessed.

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