Preparation, productivity, progress

Dear praying friends,

In brief:

  • The Global Proclamation Congress for Trainers of Pastors of Latin America & the Caribbean is one year away. Please pray!
  • Praise God for Dr. and Mrs. Richard’s safe and productive trip to Southeast Asia.
  • Pray for effective writing and content creation time for Dr. Richard this month.
  • Pray for upcoming national Global Proclamation Academies in South Asia, Ukraine and Guatemala.

The bigger picture:

Jose Madeira at conference for Panama 2020

Dallas GPA graduate Pastor J represents the upcoming GProLATAM&CARIB Congress at a conference in Brazil.

Praise God for the progress He has granted toward the GProLATAM&CARIB Congress, to be held, the Lord willing, October 12–16, 2020! The Lord willing, registration opens this week in Spanish, English and Portuguese, the official languages of the Congress. Please pray with us for the right 500 trainers of pastors to attend, a smooth registration process, and Christ-likeness, creativity and capacity for all those behind the scenes.

Dr. Richard and Bonnie enjoyed a fruitful time at Haggai International’s 50th anniversary celebration, at which Dr. Richard spoke five times. He is always grateful that God condescends to use him, even while recognizing that his gifts are bigger than his person. Praise God! Dr. Richard appreciates prayer as he prepares, strategizes, revises and presents, all in the power of God’s Holy Spirit.

Pray for this month to be fruitful as Dr. Richard focuses on writing projects and preparations for future talks.

We thank God for the national GProAcademies held in 10 different countries this year. Please pray that graduates will continue to preach biblically and connect. Also intercede for upcoming national GProAcademies in South Asia, Ukraine and Guatemala. Ask God to bring the right 25 pastors, protect organizers and attendees, and provide in every detail.

Thank you for praying!

 

In his words: Ramesh Richard April update

Dear praying friends,

“There by the grace of God, go I” well captures my sentiment, more so than the also true “there but for the grace of God, go I!” I never want to overlook the grace that carries and covers me all over the world and brings me back each time.

By God’s grace, I was carried on airlines you’ve likely not heard of: Spicejet, Druk Air,  Malindo Air and Qatar Airlines on a recent five-country, 15-day trip. It started with about 200 church leaders in a remote South Asia area, the gateway to the next two countries.

In the next country, I secretly visited our Lord’s family of 75 on a Sunday morning and with 10 thoroughly committed pastors at night. In Nepal, I publicly shared God’s Word with over 1,000 greatly enthusiastic leaders. They currently have the highest church growth rate in the world.

Then it was on to Malaysia for executive ministry meetings as a follow up to a “SWOT” exercise where our global staff had to each identify about 100 strengths, 50 weaknesses, 25 opportunities and 10 weaknesses of RREACH! A ministry directorate will oversee and implement what we discern as priorities for programs, funding, timing.  A day-long pastoral visit to nearby Singapore with weakening old(er) friends finished out the grace-filled trip.

At home, the month began with a group of about 50 grace-filled friends over a day of spiritual and strategic deliberation. What do the final two years of our decade-long human capital campaign (RREACHABLE 2010 – 2020) look like? And what about the next decade, too? 2022 and 2028 seem to be key marker moments according to … you guessed it … grace, grace, God’s grace, grace that is greater than all our sins—and plans.

Dallas Theological Seminary, too, is a grace-filled institution. In teaching the spiritual life course, I emphasize that DTS’ unique contribution to the subject is grace. I was recognized for 35 years of faculty service. I used to be the youngest ever on the faculty, once, long ago!

You, too, are a marker of God’s grace in my life. Your grace-based prayer carries and covers this servant’s ministry. Thank you for exhibiting the grace of praying, even as I continue in the grace of serving the One who died and rose again for us to ground grace into daily living.

In the Inexhaustible Vine,

RR

In his words: Ramesh Richard February 2019 update

Dear praying friends,

No sooner had this year begun than I headed on a four-region, nine-day international trip filled with opportunities for personal proclamation and global multiplication.

Heard of The Gambia? The smallest of African nations features only 4 percent Christians. And yet, a faith-filled 2018 grad of our Dallas Global Proclamation Academy arranged special meetings with several constituencies.

About 100 churches attended a united Sunday evening meeting, followed by a Monday morning gathering of 100 pastoral leaders. Separate dinners hosted business and government leaders. Several publicly professed faith. The trip climaxed with meeting the nation’s president, who had me pray for him in the name of the risen Lord Jesus.

Long transit waits in North Africa (10 hours) and the Middle East (12 hours) allowed me pastoral visits with two sets of couples, of which one husband has reverted to the religion of his birth. But that did not keep me from praying with him and his Christian wife in Jesus’ name.

Attending the 50th reunion of my high school (we graduated at 16!) in South Asia brought opportunities to personally and publicly present the glad news. About 800 eleventh and twelfth graders heard the Gospel, and over 200 of them responded for an embrace of the Lord Jesus.

I am teaching 12 fine students at Dallas Seminary this semester. And to once again preach at the Seminary’s chapel service was a privilege, as always. I have done so for 30+ years!

Beyond personal proclamation, I must receive and deploy God’s gift of leadership for global multiplication. Serving as the board chair of Trainers of Pastors International Coalition [TOPIC] carries distinct responsibilities, including a major recent meeting, while constantly seeking God’s wisdom for the future.

Thank you for walking with me and the RREACH ministry into the unknown, but not uncertain, future. The Lord provides courage and enthusiasm through your prayers. Thank you very much.

In the Inexhaustible Vine,

RR

Proclamation and pastoral care

Dear praying friends,

In brief:

  • The Lord has been giving Dr. Richard many opportunities to speak words of life and give pastoral care to leaders and professionals in West Africa, North Africa, the Middle East and South Asia, to name a few recent locations. Praise Him!
  • GPA Solomon Islands, the first national Global Proclamation Academy of 2019, wrapped up last week. Pray for these young pastors to return to ministry greatly encouraged and strengthened.
  • Dr. Richard resumes teaching at Dallas Seminary this week. Pray for him to be a useful and powerful instrument in the Lord’s hands.
  • Pray over a strategic, upcoming event introducing future RREACH ministry.

The bigger picture:

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The connection was shaky, but the Lord allowed Dr. Richard to chat with pastors at GPA Solomon Islands by video conference.

Over recent months, God used Dr. Richard to greatly encourage groups of pastoral leaders and believers, as well as speak about life issues to leaders and professionals, in West Africa, North Africa, the Middle East and South Asia. The Lord even opened the door for Dr. Richard to meet with the president of a majority non-Christian country, who invited guests, conversations, private time and prayer. Ask God to continue to pour His Spirit upon these places, strengthening those who believe and drawing many to Himself. Pray for direction as Dr. Richard considers upcoming trips to complex locations that offer great opportunities.

The first national GPA of 2019 finished last week in the Solomon Islands. Thank God for the 30 young pastors who attended. Please pray that He will connect, unite and strengthen them in special ways. Pray for upcoming national GPAs in Madagascar, Guatemala, Indonesia (women’s) and Panama.

Dr. Richard looks forward to getting back into the classroom at Dallas Seminary this week. Please pray for his preparation and teaching. Pray, too, as he prepares to speak in chapel January 30. (If you’re in Dallas at that time, you’re welcome to attend. Let us know, so he can look for you!)

We would appreciate prayer as we prepare for an early March event celebrating what God has done through RREACH and introducing the next decade. Please pray that God will clarify all details and bring the right participants for a full, even overflowing, house. Thank you for praying!

Every prayer matters

Dear praying friends,

In brief:

  • Praise and pray for Dr. Ramesh Richard’s current ministry trip in South Asia.
  • Thank God that Dr. Richard found his much-used and convenient jotter pad!
  • Pray for special opportunities to proclaim our Lord Jesus this amazing Christmas season.
  • Ask God to provide just the right resources for RREACH ministry.

The bigger picture:

RR at Caleb Institute

Dr. Richard encouraging leaders and students at a new theological institute in South Asia

Dr. Richard has enjoyed many opportunities to talk about the Lord Jesus with opinion leaders—people of influence and affluence—during his current trip in South Asia. Praise God for the individuals who organized outreaches and for the good turnouts. Please pray that the messages keep penetrating minds and hearts, that many will receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior!

Thank God with us for granting even seemingly small requests. A few weeks ago Dr. Richard could not find his pocket-sized jotter pad, a handy little tool he always uses for visits with friends or opening comments during talks. He remembered where he had left it, but it had disappeared. He searched high and low and asked RREACH staff to pray with him, especially as time drew near to an international trip with numerous speaking engagements. The good news came to the staff after he was already en route—God placed his hand on the jotter pad (literally—it had been laid on top of a tall cabinet) the night before his departure. Thank you for your every prayer for Ramesh. We may have no idea how the Lord is answering—but He is!

People seem more open to thinking about spiritual and eternal realities at this time of year. Would you please especially remember Dr. Richard and all of our Dallas and national Global Proclamation Academy graduates as they proclaim God’s Word in many different contexts? Pray for their bold and loving witness. Pray for protection and peace. Pray for more people to realize and receive the true gift of God during the Christmas season.

We continually bow before God as He supplies what RREACH needs for ministry. We thank Him for every provision and ask His wisdom in employing it wisely. Please pray for His ongoing, timely provision and for blessing on every channel through whom it flows.

Thank you!

In his words: Ramesh Richard November update

Dear praying friends,

I have spent months diving into the five occurrences of our Lord’s Final Commission. I/We must (1) go with the Gospel (Mark 16); (2) proclaim forgiveness (Luke 24); (3) make disciples of all nations (Mt. 28); (4) by the power of the Spirit (Acts 1); and (5) in the way Christ was sent (John 20). What He has said is what I have done at RREACH for the last 30 years, and last month, too!

In South Asia I spoke in two of five Sunday services at the world’s fastest-growing church, each service averaging 20,000. Their pastor has never had formal training for ministry! At a mega-festival, fully half the 20,000 youth responded to my invitation. I proclaim!

Then I headed to RREACH’s first event at our first established Chair of Biblical Preaching and Pastoral Ministries. The South Asia Institute of Christian Studies (SAIACS) is one of the finest seminaries in Asia. Most of the 50 attendees were teachers of preaching and will take this preaching method to their schools. We multiply proclaimers!

Hardly recovered from jet lag, I proclaimed God’s Word through four “heart messages” to the Global Alliance for Church Multiplication in chilly Minneapolis. Their goal? Planting 4 million more churches in the next four years. And yet who will pastor those churches to health? RREACH’s GProCommission addresses the church health side of church growth.

I might as well have stayed jet-lagged! A Middle Eastern country gave me opportunities at its most prestigious university. Sixteen pre-Christ, English Literature students actively wanted to know about the meaning of life, giving me permission at the end of two hours to share my personal conviction about the Lord Jesus. I did, and offered LifeRocks as follow-up.

A pastors retreat in a war-devastated country was the highlight of the month. After several years of frustrated efforts, we received the Lord’s provision in all ways to gather half (32) of all the pastors staying to serve in this sad area, with their wives and kids under 12, for a time of loving refreshment. Although their suffering is far greater than we can imagine, God used His Word through me to encourage them.

This Thanksgiving month, I cannot but thank God and you for helping me proclaim God’s Word and multiply proclaimers of God’s Word through your priceless support of RREACH.

In the Inexhaustible One,

RR

Ministry and math

Dear praying friends,

Calvary Temple screenshot

Sunday service in one of the fastest-growing churches in the world

People are hungry for God. The picture above shows Ramesh Richard’s view as he spoke in one of the fastest-growing churches in the world during his recent South Asia trip. He spoke in two of five services which average 20,000 to 25,000 attendees each. At a mega youth conference of 15,000 the church held the next day, around 10,000 responded to his invitation.

From there he went to teach at the first pastors conference held in conjunction with RREACH’s first Chair of Preaching and Pastoral Ministries, established at SAIACS a year ago. The attendance–55–was but a fraction of that at the mega-church. But for Dr. Richard, it was more strategic. The reason is simple: multiplication. Those pastors, by God’s grace, will lead many future churches.

This last week Ramesh gave several “heart message” talks to about 200 church planting leaders from around the world at a Global Alliance for Church Multiplication Forum in Minneapolis, Minn. Their goal is 5 million churches planted by 2020. The corresponding challenge: Who is going to pastor those church plants to long-term health? RREACH’s Global Proclamation Commission is working on that. At the same time the forum was in session, 36 pastors and 18 wives were finishing training in Cuba’s second national Global Proclamation Academy.

That, dear prayer partners, is how God is multiplying the effect of your prayers!

The response has been encouraging. “Your talk was superb today. Superb. Much positive feedback. We thank God for His provision.” And from a media conference in South Asia, “I could see the Holy Spirit working in every word you spoke. I clearly see God’s hand in hand picking you for this year’s conference, and from the feedback we are getting, I am seeing God igniting hearts to move forward in the area of the harvest.”

We can’t tell you how much we appreciate you. Please keep on praying. The Lord willing, RREACH’s board of directors meets this weekend, GPA Mexico begins next week, and we are planning a retreat for pastors and families in a desperately dangerous region.