Friday, August 24, 2007

Lasting Fruit - Changed Lives

During the thirty years that I've been associated with Trans World Radio, I've observed a number of attempts at summarizing what it is that TWR is attempting to accomplish as a ministry.

The current TWR vision statement is, "To reach the world for Christ by mass media so that lasting fruit is produced." This image of lasting fruit is probably drawn from Jesus statement, recorded in John 15:16, "You did not choose me. I chose you and sent you out to produce fruit, the kind of fruit that will last..." TWR used to talk about "changed lives" which is probably a similar concept.

An example of lasting fruit, is seen in this letter from a young woman from Peru, who recently wrote to the Petrito el Pulpo radio program for kids.

Hello! I just pass by to greet you and tell you that your programs have been a blessing in my life. I have been listening to them for a number years and I never get tired. Now I am not a child any more, but still wait anxiously to hear your stories, and even more, they are an inspiration in my preparation of the lessons for the children in my church. (Now I am a Sunday school teacher). Keep going onward!!! May God bless you richly!

Hola! Sólo pasaba a saludarlos y decirles que sus programas han sido una bendición en mi vida, los escucho desde hace ya varios años y no me canso. Aunque ya no soy una niña, los sábados espero con ansias escuchar sus historias, además de que ahora me inspiran para hacer la lección para los niños de mi iglesia (ya que soy maestra de escuela dominical). Sigan adelante!!! Y que el Señor les siga bendiciendo en gran manera!!!

Of course, changed lives can take many forms, in widely divergent circumstances, as this letter from Africa illustrates. “My family has rejected me since they found out I am HIV-positive. I’m a Christian, yet my life has become a heavy cross to bear. But today something has changed—God is answering my anguish through your counseling and educational program. My hope is renewed.”

The TWR initiative Africa Challenge, launched in 1986, focuses on topics like agriculture, HIV/AIDS and other relevant issues. One of my early posts in the fall of 2003 covered some of the these topics. Unfortunately, all the links in that post are broken now. Here is some current information from the TWR-Africa web site.

In a related note, TWR announced this month its associate membership with the Association of Evangelical Relief and Development Organizations (AERDO). AERDO is a professional forum for nonprofit Christian agencies and individuals engaged in relief and development work. TWR also participates in the AERDO HIV/AIDS Alliance, a group that pursues collaborative involvement in HIV/AIDS projects around the world.

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