Calling from the Villages in Taiwan
Village Gospel Mission, VGM, was founded in 1971 by an American missionary couple, Rev. and Mrs. Richard Webster. After receiving a vision from God about church planting in villages throughout Taiwan, Rev. and Mrs. Webster led a group of Christian students to Da-Chia in Tai-Chung county and started their village gospel work. The team worked very hard for several years and traveled to many villages throughout the whole island. However, VGM workers started to realize that in order for the evangelical work to take deeper roots, it’s necessary to send full time missionaries to stay and work at those new churches in the villages. This decision has been blessed greatly by God and since 1981 VGM has established many strong footholds for God and has brought light to many unlighted, and poor rural villages in Taiwan.
VGM workers usually have very limited resource but unlimited enthusiasm for God’s words to prevail. They live very simple lives and live right in the midst of local villagers so that they can reach to the villagers through their daily activities. After more than 20 years of sweat and tears, this dry and uncultivated rural land of Taiwan is finally getting loosen up. In the villages where God’s words were unknown in the past, where the belief of folk religion dictated every day lives, now true worships are offered to God by many small groups of God’s children, and Gospel is there to prevail.
To continue church planting in villages and to spread the gospel throughout the whole island.
To encourage brothers and sisters to work at rural churches either full time or part time.
Early retiree missionary
To pass on VGM’s vision to churches and call for their support and caring of rural evangelism.
Starting from zero:
VGM’s vision continues to be establishing gospel foothold in rural villages. The work usually begins without any basic church members. With very limited resources, VGM workers move forward with his/her burden and our Lord’s mighty power. Under the bondage of the folk believes and closely-knit social structure, mission work requires much perseverance. In building a church, the missionaries usually need to do all the work and endure long hours of difficult and tedious tasks.
Introduce the church to the villagers through offering community classes, e.g., English, After School Children program, Music, Computer, and Enrichment classes for women. Offering many channels for villagers to easily come into local church.
Summer Bi-lingual Camp: VGM is calling college students in North America and Taiwan with evangelic burden, to enter rural elementary and junior high school through English camp, to sow the seeds of gospel.
Village Life Camp: VGM is also calling city high school, college students, and anyone with burden in village mission, to come to experience rural living. Thus the vision of VGM may be passed on, the needs of Taiwan local mission may be appreciated, and further more, it may prepare future full or part time servants to the village.
The importance of rural evangelism:The dark, rural villages may be lit by the true light of gospel.
The grass root people grew up with wounds, misunderstanding, or bondage of wicked habits. So it’s very important to bring God’s word to their everyday lives and to show them Jesus is the only solution to their problems. Because Jesus can change their hearts, and can replace their suffering with hope.
The revival of churches in Taiwan roots in the villages.
The percentage of Christian in Taiwan has long been about 2.5%. In rural area, it’s even lower, for example, 0.3% in Yun-Lin County, and 0.4% in Chia-Yi County. Lacking of gospel allow folk religion to spread like weeds and rot the roots. We urgently need workers to go and live among the villagers, to cultivate, to plant, and to build the foundation for future harvesting.
Teachers going to Rural area for Gospel
Traditionally, teachers are well respected by country folks. Their influence can match that of a pastor. They mold students’ lives. Collaborating with church, a teacher can be a missionary by bringing children to Sunday school, to youth fellowship, and by reaching out to their families.
Early retiree missionary and gospel immigrant
Settle among the villagers, you can experience the grass root culture deeper, and expose your value system of the truth to them. You will influence lives with your life, and loosen the strong hold of the social structure. The villagers will see the differences in the fruits born between Christian families and idol worship families. When words could not convince, the testimony of life will.
“Unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.” With praying churches, the order from the omnipotent God, and submissive missionaries, we believe more breakthroughs in our village evangelic work will come, and God’s hope and truth will prevail in all the hopeless and lifeless fields.