Christian Campaigns Give Indians 'Power to Change'

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Advertisements in major cities from Asia to the Middle East are introducing millions of people to a life-changing message about Christ.

The month-long media campaign recently flooded India's third-largest city with its "Power to Change" theme, reaching more people in a few weeks than local churches could reach in years. The effort is a collaborative effort of Christian ministries and local church leaders.

Hyderabad is home to India's high-tech industry. Many refer to it as the country's Silicon Valley.

But despite the city's technological advances, its population suffers the same problems mankind has faced for centuries.

"They are depressed. They are oppressed. So many people are in so many difficult situations, and they are thinking, 'My life can never change. It will be the same,'" explained Sushruth Pradhan, leader of Refreshing International Ministries.

"But this message, this campaign would bring them a hope," Pradhan continued. "(To show them) yes, there is a power that can change your life."

Historic Reaction

The Power to Change ads appeared on buses, taxis, and billboards this summer.

Radio and television commercials challenged residents to learn about the dramatic changes taking place in individuals like Peter Samuel, a former alcoholic turned pastor.

"I thought this is the best way to honor my God who gave me a new lease of life 18 years back," he said. "So I found it a great joy to tell to the world this was where I was."

"I would have died in some gutter where nobody would have ever realized who Peter Samuel was. but God picked me from that situation and put me here," Samuel continued.

Such testimonies dramatized through the PTC campaign gave local churches a powerful new way for Christians to reach their city.

Hannu Haukka, president of Great Commission Media Ministries, helped develop the campaigns. He said it's an effective way to saturate unreached, urban populations.

"We are not bringing people into a stadium. We are actually with the churches going out and targeting the whole city," he explained.

"Ten million people in the city ... and by the time that 30-day campaign is over we should have reached 90 percent of (that) 10 million," he said.

Thousands of callers flooded the campaign's phone center requesting the free book with stories of lives changed by God.

"We have 60 phones going pretty well nonstop. By the time the campaign is over, we should have received 100,000 calls of people who have specifically ordered that book," Haukka said.

"And we're talking about Hindus, Muslims in the city of Hyderabad. It's something that churches have never, never seen in that city," he said.

Mobilizing Youth

Participating church leaders already report new visitors. They've also seen their own congregations become more active.

"Our youth were excited," Pradhan said. "At this moment some of them are on their way going to different houses giving the book to those who have called."

"They were more than willing and happy to go and give those leaflets, and they felt comfortable (talking to non-Christians)," Samuel added.

During the past decade, Haukka's Finland-based ministry has taken the Power to Change media campaign to more than 60 cities, including Jesus' home town of Nazareth, in Israel.

There they focused on the Arabic and Russian-speaking population. And in spite of resistance from Orthodox Jews, hundreds of Jewish families requested the campaign book.

"I think God gave media to the churches," Haukka said.

"And together with the churches in the target city, we are using the media in a way they have never seen before," he continued. "It's something that has not happened."

As the Hyderabad campaign winds down, Haukka is planning similar media blitzes for three other cities this year. He urged churches everywhere to use all the tools available to spread the gospel.

"I can tell you Moses will not rise from the dead, neither will David, neither will Joshua, to fight our battles," Haukka said. "It's either us in the body of Christ in this generation or it's nobody. We are Plan A. That's the good news. And the bad news is there's no Plan B."

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CBN News
Stan Jeter

Stan Jeter

CBN News Senior Producer

CBN News Senior Producer Stan Jeter specializes in Christian news and Latin American coverage.  He has lived and worked for many years in South and Central America, most recently developing the Spanish Christian news program, Mundo Cristiano.  Follow Stan on Twitter @StanJeterNews and "like" him at