It gives me great joy to give you the highlight for the year 2012.
1. New church plants: Last year we the GMI annual report consisted of 85 churches but this year you will notice that 106 churches are listed. So that indicates that there are at least 21 new church plants. This does not include several other new outposts or worship centre that have started. There is a huge rise in churches among the Nepali speaking people. The total attendance has increased from 4500 of last year to 5300 in this year. And plans are afoot to plant other churches. For example Rajendra, from our Andheri (Hindi) church, who graduated from the ATC last year, has now been sent by Thomas Ouseph, to Nepal in November 2012 to plant a church in Nepalese near his home town. Likewise Manish & Arpita Das of Conoor church in have done a survey of the city of Kolkata and now will be shifting there to plant a church in English by early January 2013.
2. Triple church services: During 2012, BBC Colaba church has started a 3rdservice. Likewise CBD church has also started their 3rd service. This is after the Navi Mumbai churches launched out the Kamothe church in the month of May. (The Geeta Nagar Hindi church has been running 3 church services for last several years, while Murthy Nagar runs 2 services).
3. Churches which have closed down: And Bethel Nagar church in MIraj,has merged with the main Miraj church, likewise the Mumbra Tamil church has merged with the Dombivili Tamil church.
4. Inductive Bible Study: We had started having specialized events based on people’s gifting and function. Four years ago we had a retreat for apostolicpeople, and the resource person was Vic Gledhill. Then in the following year we had 2 events for the prophetic people for which the resource people were Bryn Franklin, Keith Miners, Sanjay Parmar, John Dhamraitand Chris Warwick. The subsequent year we had Anil Thomas conduct “Evangelism Explosion” for those who were evangelistic. Last year in October 2011, to help those with teaching gift, we had invited Brian Watts to teach on “How to study the Bible for all its worth”. The Inductive method of Bible study was to help all people, especially those with a teaching gift to equip them in their ability to study the Bible Inductively. This was conducted in Hindi as well.
5. GMI Magazine: This year we were able to publish the magazine called “Momentum”. The theme for the first issue was “Discipleship”. The feedback was fabulous from people all over. The theme of the second issue is on “Relationship” and is on the verge of being released.
6. Writer’s workshop: This year in January 2012 AnandMahadevan conducted a writer’s workshop. This is again a new event organized by the church.
7. GMI Website: Almost all the main messages of all our seminars and major events are now uploaded on the GMI website. Nearly 200 video messages and 100 audio messages are now available for free download. Some of these are in Hindi as well.
8. GMI Publications: Our Foundation course book is now printed in Urdu in Pakistan, by churches connected to Vic Gledhill. The translation work of the Foundation course book is completed in Nepali language by Mr Lalit of our church in Badlapur, and it will soon be released before the end of the year. Charles also published our Song Book No 5 in English, along with a CD containing the same songs in MP3 format. Due to shortage of storage space, we have sold out most of our earlier publications (except for a few titles). Hereafter we will make the resource material available as a soft copy. So the process of compiling and converting the files in pdf format is going on. In the meantime, I have edited and approved the draft of 6 books which have been written. Most likely these books will be published in 2013.
9. Vision 2020 – The 7 Mountain mandate: Our people are claiming the 7 spheres namely Media, Arts and entertainment, Education, Family, Business, social work and church Planting.
10. Decentralization: Several churches are getting decentralized while many have submitted their applications to the charity commissioner and so soon will get their cluster registered. Some have been able to obtain the “12A” registration from the Income Tax department. All the churches that have got decentralized are contributing 10% of their income to GMI central.
11. Miracles: All our churches have seen supernatural healings and miracles, but in particular some churches have seen that in far more numbers than others. The Blind see, the lame walk and the dumb and deaf are healed. Praise God for his display of power.
12. Encounter weekends: So far several church members have been to Adonai church in Bangalore to attend and to be ministered at their retreats known as the 9 day inner healing retreats. The feedback has been fabulous. But now our own people have been trained and soon we will be able to hold our own “Encounter weekends” in Mumbai & Vizag.
By Stanley Mehta