More than one billion people – one-sixth of the world’s population – live in the LCMS’s oldest mission field: India. Over 30 percent of India’s population is under the age of 14. “These are the children Jesus wants to come to Him, thousands of children who need to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to receive His rich gifts of forgiveness, salvation and eternal life,” says Rev. Matthew Heise, executive director of the Lutheran Heritage Foundation (LHF).
With the support of the Texas District LWML, LHF is helping to spread the Good News to His children in India through the translation and publication of a book called One Hundred Bible Stories. The 50 Old Testament and 50 New Testament lessons, ranging from God’s creation of the world to Christ’s death, resurrection and ascension, will be used by Lutheran day schools, Sunday schools and vacation Bible schools throughout Tamil-speaking India.
“We are very grateful to the women of the Texas District LWML for their support of this LHF project to bring the Gospel to Tamil-speaking people,” said Rev. Heise. “We know that through this book, people will learn of Jesus Christ for the first time. Teachers will have the resources they need to confidently teach their religion classes, and others will have their faith strengthened.”
Originally, this project was expected to be finished by June 2011. However, the death of Rev. John Sundaram, LHF project manager, slowed progress. Fortunately, Rev. Sundaram’s son, Cherub, has picked up the reins and is now guiding One Hundred Bible Stories through to completion. LHF now expects the book and its accompanying teacher guide to be printed by late fall or early winter, 2011.
The translation of One Hundred Bible Stories into the Tamil language will share the Gospel message of Christ and His gifts of forgiveness, salvation and eternal life with children in both India and Sri Lanka. The accompanying teacher’s guide will assist the teachers to develop in the children a growing knowledge of Holy Scriptures in a simple, creative and systematic way. With more than 65 million Tamil speakers in South Asia (the majority in India and Sri Lanka), these materials will also serve as short, scriptural, solid foundational tools for spreading the Gospel to new fields and for the planting of new congregations.