India in the News | 7.28.14

July 28th, 2014

india in the news july

Once a month we cull the headlines to bring you stories from the world’s largest democracy — its politics, economy, culture and everyday life.

Christians targeted as Indian villages outlaw non-Hindu practices

“Religious freedom groups have expressed concern after several villages in central India moved to outlaw the open practice of Christianity. According to World Watch Monitor, the villages of Belar and Sirsiguda in Chhattisgarh’s Bastar district have passed resolutions banning all non-Hindu religious activities, a move that has already led to a rise in anti-Christian violence, according to church leaders.” read more

New Poverty Formula Proves Test for India

“India is wrestling with an important question: How do you count the poor if you can’t agree on the definition of poverty? Debate over redrawing the poverty line—the product of reams of academic research, field surveys and mathematical modeling—might seem arcane but carries great consequence. Under a new formula proposed last month by a government-appointed committee, nearly 30% of India’s 1.2 billion people would be classified as poor,” read more

India, the Next Great Basketball Superpower?

“Without warning, basketball has made front pages in India. There were two pieces of news, within a few days of each other. The biggie was that the NBA now had the first Indian-origin player in its sights. Simran “Sim” Bhullar, a 7 feet 5 inches, 163.3 kilograms, 21-year-old Canadian, the Ontario-born son of Indian immigrants, made it to the 2014 NBA draft. He was not one of 60 picked during the draft, but the next day, Bhullar signed a contract with the Sacramento Kings.” read more

Seven joys of train travel in India

“To fall asleep in Mumbai and wake up in Bhuj, travelling from Delhi to Kolkata or Lucknow to Varanasi – the journey is endless, but the one connecting factor in my travels across elephant land remains the Indian train. Perhaps a product of the British rule, today she reverberates with the rhythm of India. Romanticise her, or rubbish her, there are some pleasures which no other mode of transport can provide. Here are seven joys that are unique to train travel in India.” read more

Monsoon revival keeps rain above average

“India’s parched rice, soybean, cotton growing areas will receive more rainfall next week as the monsoon is expected to continue its wet revival phase. Rains in the northwest India grain bowl as well as in soybean belts of western-central parts are expected speed up summer planting activities. India’s farm sector accounts for around 14 percent of the economy but two-thirds of the country’s 1.2 billion people depend on farming for their livelihood,” read more

Kerry to woo Modi’s India, but quick progress unlikely

“U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry visits India this week as Washington tries to revitalize ties it sees as a counterbalance to China’s rising power, but rapid progress is unlikely, despite the reformist reputation of India’s new leader. The visit by Kerry, and a trip by Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel next month, follow the resounding election win of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in May and are meant to create a good climate for Modi’s planned visit to Washington in September.” read more

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Our Story: “An Act of God’s Pure Grace”

July 16th, 2014

Our latest video was just released, and we’re thrilled to share it with you today.

Filmed on location in India by the generous and creative folks at Let There Be, this brief, inspiring film tells the story of how Vision Nationals grew from a single church into a multi-faceted ministry that touches thousands of lives each year. As one of our board members said, “The story never gets old.” Indeed, it doesn’t.

Vision Nationals is an act of God’s pure grace, and this film beautifully captures that sentiment. Please take a moment to watch the video and share it with others. And thank you for partnering with us as we plant churches, train nationals, and care for orphans and widows in India.


Since 1992, Vision Nationals has been fulfilling the Great Commission in India. Through your prayers and financial gifts God has graciously sustained our work.

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5 Things You Should Know

July 8th, 2014

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No. 1: “…remember, asking is the rule of the kingdom.” Like so many of his contemporaries, Charles Spurgeon understood the importance of persistent, believing prayer, and more than one hundred years after his death, his writings continue to embolden the church to pray. As we intercede for India this month, we invite you to join us. Like Spurgeon, we believe that “God’s church might have inconceivable blessings if she were but ready to pray.”

No. 2: On June 18 we opened a new children’s home in L.N. Peta, Srikakulam District. By God’s grace, 20 at-risk children are now being loved and cared for in a safe, familial environment. Our hope is that in the coming years we’ll be in a position to offer hundreds, if not thousands, of vulnerable, abandoned, and orphaned children a place of refuge in one of our homes.

No. 3: Despite setbacks, including excessive heat that blanketed Andhra Pradesh, construction continues on our new school. By mid-September the new building should be ready for occupancy, and we’ll be able to welcome hundreds more students into our school.

No. 4: On July 21-25, we’ll be hosting our pastors’ training program in Visakhapatnam (Vizag); helping us facilitate this important event will be two teams sent by partner churches in the U.S. As a ministry, one of the greatest privileges we have is the opportunity to strengthen and encourage Indian pastors. By God’s grace, our campus has become a hub for equipping the church and her leaders, and it is truly an honor for us to be in a position to build up the body of Christ. We treasure each and every occasion to do so.

No. 5: As we shared with you in last month’s edition of 5 Things You Should Know, Madhurawada Church is an extraordinary congregation with a passion to proclaim and demonstrate the gospel of Jesus Christ in the city of Vizag. Their love for Jesus and his mission has compelled them to start an English-speaking congregation (or “English church”), and the church’s first worship service is slated for Sunday, August 3. Please keep this vibrant community of faithful Christians in your prayers as they begin this new work.


Since 1992, Vision Nationals has been planting churches, training nationals, and caring for orphans and widows in India. Through your prayers and financial gifts God has graciously sustained our work.

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July Prayer Requests

July 1st, 2014

July Prayer Requests

Our work in India depends on the persistent, believing prayers of God’s people. As we wholeheartedly embrace a posture of dependency on God — inviting his kingdom to come and his will to be done on earth as it is in heaven — he acts on our behalf.

THIS MONTH, PLEASE PRAY FOR…

The new children’s home we started in L.N. Peta, Srikakulam District, on June 18. By God’s grace, 20 at-risk children are now being loved and cared for in a safe, familial environment.

Our pastors’ training program, which takes place on July 21-25 at our campus in Vizag. It’s our hope that this event will be a great encouragement to Indian pastors.

Monsoon season to begin. The Indian heat wave has claimed at least 169 lives in our state alone and forced us to cut our school day in half. Millions are suffering under the oppressive heat.

The English-speaking congregation (or “English church”) that is beginning to take shape in Vizag. The church’s first worship service is slated for Sunday, August 3.

The safety of construction crews as they build our new school.

Our students and teachers as they begin another academic year. Between Master’s School and Master’s College of Theology we’ve enrolled more than 110 new students.

God’s favor as we renew our government-mandated recognition of Master’s School. This year, for some inexplicable reason, the process has been fraught with challenges.

The completion of the church buildings that are currently under construction, as well as the capacity, financial and otherwise, to build many more.

God’s grace to rest upon us as we plant churches, train nationals, and care for orphans and widows in India.

Thank you for praying for Vision Nationals.


Since 1992, Vision Nationals has been planting churches, training nationals, and caring for orphans and widows in India. Through your prayers and financial gifts God has graciously sustained our work.

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India in the News | 6.24.14

June 24th, 2014

India News June final

Once a month we cull the headlines to bring you stories from the world’s largest democracy — its politics, economy, culture and everyday life.

Five Myths About India’s Poverty

“As India’s new government takes the helm, the once-elusive goal of eliminating extreme poverty in India finally appears within the country’s reach. But does exiting extreme poverty really guarantee that the poor can attain a decent life? This question has particular urgency in India, the world’s largest democracy and home to one-third of the world’s extremely poor.” read more

Economist: Christianity Helps India’s ‘Untouchable’ Women Rise Up From Poverty

“A researcher at Georgetown University in Washington has found that impoverished women in India are more likely to improve their economic circumstances after converting to Christianity. ‘Conversion actually helps launch women on a virtuous circle. A woman feels better; she’s part of an active faith community; she works more; she earns more money: The extra money she earns and saves encourages her to earn more and save more and plan and invest in the future,’ said Rebecca Samuel Shah.” read more

16 Facts About India That Will Blow Your Mind

“India is one of the world’s largest economies, and it has the second largest population. This means things in India tend to be fairly large-scaled — consider its network of roads, consumer spending, or its youth population. But it also experiences some problems on a large scale like suicides and road accidents. We pulled together some staggering statistics from the sub-continent.” read more

English Premier League signs a deal with Indian Super League to develop football in India

“Its a good news for all the football fans in India as the English Premier League (EPL) has signed an agreement with the Indian Super League (ISL) to develop football in India. The English Premier League, which is the most successful and the most watched football league in the world, will provide strategic support, advice and will also provide assistance to the Indian Super League.” read more

The 2014 India Monsoon Season: The Most Important Forecast in the World

“It’s about to start raining in India, but not quite yet. That’s big news in a country where about half of the 1.25 billion population is engaged in agriculture. Each year, 70 percent of India’s annual rains come during the summer monsoon months of June to September, when rising warm air over the subcontinent draws moisture northward from the relatively cooler Indian Ocean. This year, thanks in part to El Niño, the outlook is grim.” read more

Where is India’s boom?

“Two days before Narendra Modi was sworn in as India’s new prime minister, proclaiming a bold new vision for a resurgent nation, the last Ambassador rolled off the Hindustan Motors production line outside Calcutta. For decades the clunky sedan, generally painted cream, was the automobile of choice for India’s political elite. But nearly 60 years after its first appearance, it has become a dated relic of a bygone age, outclassed by jauntier models.” read more

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5 Things You Should Know

June 5th, 2014

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Published on the 5th of each month and designed to be informative and brief, 5 Things You Should Know highlights five of the most important things going on at Vision Nationals.

No. 1: As we gear up for the start of another academic year on June 11, preparations are already well underway at our campus in Vizag. Both Master’s School and Master’s College of Theology are enrolling new students, welcoming new faculty and staff, and anticipating another exceptional year. Because of your generosity, we’re changing lives through education.

No. 2: On June 18 we enter a brand new phase of ministry as we begin caring for more at-risk children in Srikakulam District. We’ve been hard at work laying the groundwork for this expansion — renting a home, hiring staff, and purchasing supplies. In partnership with Pastor Kishore, we look forward to helping more kids break the cycle of poverty.

No. 3: Though things have been delayed just slightly because our mason was injured while on another job site, the Master’s School building project is moving forward. Every day we inch closer to the goal, which is to fill our new classrooms with students who are eager to learn and grow in a dynamic, educational environment. Once the building is finished, presumably by mid-August, we’ll be able to welcome hundreds more students into our school.

No. 4: Madhurawada Church is an extraordinary congregation with a passion to proclaim and demonstrate the gospel of Jesus Christ in the city of Vizag. As a result of their love for Jesus and his mission, they’ve outgrown their current building and are now just days away from moving into a brand new facility. Even while the finishing touches are being put on their new space, new believers are being baptized and an English-speaking congregation (or “English church”) is beginning to take shape — incredible!

No. 5: Prayer is the most important thing we do. It’s unimaginable to think about how ineffective we’d be without it. Our work depends on prayer. It is the engine of mission. As you have opportunity, please pray with us this month. As we wholeheartedly embrace a posture of dependency on God, he acts on our behalf.


Since 1992, Vision Nationals has been planting churches, training nationals, and caring for orphans and widows in India. Through your prayers and financial gifts God has graciously sustained our work.

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June Prayer Requests

June 1st, 2014

June Prayer Requests

For more than a century, the writings of Andrew Murray have emboldened the church to pray. His books, now widely considered to be devotional classics, exude a humble confidence in God. As one source noted, few authors are as adept as Murray at helping readers “move past shallow, ineffectual prayer into a fuller understanding of the work God has called them to do.”

As you pray with us, consider allowing this counsel from Andrew Murray to shape your times of intercession: “Each time, before you intercede, be quiet first, and worship God in His glory. Think of what He can do, and how He delights to hear the prayers of His redeemed people. Think of your place and privilege in Christ, and expect great things!”

THIS MONTH, PLEASE PRAY FOR…

God’s grace to rest upon us as we plant churches, train nationals, and care for orphans and widows in India.

Wisdom to permeate every decision we make.

The safety of construction crews as they build a new home for Master’s School.

Our students and teachers as they begin another academic year.

Increased enrollment at Master’s College of Theology and Master’s School.

Things to go smoothly as we renew our government-mandated recognition of Master’s School.

Our director, Arjuna, as he leads our ministries in India.

God’s favor as we begin caring for more of India’s vulnerable, abandoned, and orphaned children in Srikakulam District.

God’s Spirit to be poured out on our network of pastors and churches, so that they continue to powerfully proclaim and demonstrate the good news of Jesus among the unreached people groups of India.

The capacity, financial and otherwise, to build 12 new church buildings this year.

The English-speaking congregation that is now forming in Vizag.

The new believers who will be baptized in Vizag this month.

All those involved in helping us finish our new church building in Vizag.

Our newest staff members in India, especially as they transition into their new roles within our ministry.

Karla and Tom as they support our teams in India, Nepal, and Thailand.

Our Board of Directors as they provide spiritual and strategic oversight to our ministry.

Thank you for praying for Vision Nationals.


Since 1992, Vision Nationals has been planting churches, training nationals, and caring for orphans and widows in India. Through your prayers and financial gifts God has graciously sustained our work.

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