In this series, those involved with CLC foreign missions profile one aspect of our overseas endeavors.
[Editor: The following is a report about current activities in the Himalayan Church of the Lutheran Confession in Nepal (HCLCN). It is written, in his own words, by the indigenous pastor who is our main contact in Nepal. Names of people and places are being withheld because of the risk of persecution. The report is lightly edited for clarity.]
We praise God for being faithful to us and blessing our work in this Hindu-predominant country of Nepal. The need of workers for t he harvest is great. The spiritual harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Nepal is more than 80% Hindu and 13% Buddhist. The country has a lot of work of the power of darkness and evil that one can feel and experience. The people are made blind with the darkness of sin. They worship idols and creatures rather than the Creator. In 1811 one British emissary, describing the Kathmandu valley, wrote, “there are as many temples as houses and as many idols as inhabitants.” To bring them to light and chase the darkness, we need the power of the Gospel preached to those who are in need.
As it says in Romans 10:14-15, “How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!'” (ESV)
The need of good news is great. There is no good news outside the Holy Scriptures. There are villages that are not reached with the Gospel yet. To equip more people with the Gospel, the HCLCN started pastoral training in 2009. The pastors were very enthusiastic and excited to receive training and have been blessed since then. There are many leaders who have the passion of sharing good news but lack Biblical studies and knowledge. To meet the need, the HCLCN officially established the Himalayan Bible Institute in 2016 in Kathmandu. Since then, the pastors and leaders are being trained and equipped with the Word of God.
There are ups and downs working with the people, tribes, and communities. Sometimes we get very excited and encouraged to share the Gospel with the lost souls and the needy ones. They receive the Gospel well and grow in faith and serve as examples in the churches, communities, and families. At those times, what we see is great.
But there are some times when we get disappointed, discouraged and sad when we hear that the very ones that we have prayed for and given our time and resources to have left our fellowship and associated themselves with some random false teaching churches or church bodies. That is an unbearable pain and it is a difficult situation to handle. Sometimes they need financial assistance and we could not support them as they expected, and they leave us with complaints. Some of them have sought help from other church bodies, and then they start fellowship with them without knowing and understanding their doctrines.
However, the training at the HBI is going well, and the classes are regularly conducted. The faithful servants of the Lord are doing well in their studies. We are working in order to serve more students with the Word of God so that they can do the work of the Kingdom for their people in their local areas.
There is a need of more training in several parts of the country. We are praying and planning to conduct more training at our HBI facility as well as at seminars in different locations around the country.
There are some challenges and problems in training the men for the work of the ministry. There are some people that speak falsely against us, saying that we are teaching the students wrong. And there are some students and potential students who are seeking some kind of financial or material gain after completing the training. When we tell them clearly that there will be no salaries or financial support or benefits, they are displeased and think of other alternatives that provide them training and salaries. There are these kinds of issues that we are facing at the Himalayan Bible Institute.
We pray that the Lord gives us faithful students that have hearts for the people and are willing to share the Good News to the people that are perishing. Please pray for Nepal and our work for the expansion of the Kingdom in this country and its people. We would appreciate your prayers, support, and encouragement.