OMS International started its ministry in India in the year 1941, and founded Allahabad Bible Seminary in 1942 with the objectives of training local pastors and evangelists for intensive evangelistic works and planting self-supportive, self-governing and self-propagating indigenous churches. The practical work department of Allahabad Bible Seminary plays an important role in undertaking these objectives through its activities. Allahabad Bible Seminary tries to keep the academic as well as practical works in balance. Under the proficient leadership of the Principal, with the advices of the faculty members and with the enthusiastic participation of all the students of Allahabad Bible Seminary, the Practical works department is marching toward greater transformation in and around Allahabad city and District through various kinds of its ministries. Some of the important features are:
find very important place in the practical ministry of Allahabad Bible Seminary. We do children ministry in the villages. Through children ministry we are able to contact with their parents and get close relationship with the adult members of the villages. We help the churches in their existing Sunday schools. Our students also go to three different schools in the city and give them awareness about various social evils in the society through songs and stories during the morning assembly.
We are trying to give the gospel in various available medium. Hence we have adopted the showing method and are using puppets in our ministry. We have found out that it is one of the effective methods to reach out the villagers and the children.
Ecclesiastes 12:1 says, “Remember your creator in the days of your youth”. Youth is the time where one decides his/her life. Often we find that youngsters are caught up in various kinds of bad habits and become addicts of drugs, alcohol, etc. Hence, we try to bring the youngsters in the right path and help them to decide best for their life. To encourage them ABS organize youth programs in which they are allowed to expose their talents through music, singing, etc. Seminars are arranged through SCMI to give them awareness about various social evils corrupting our society and try to equip them to face challenges in their life. We also involve in the youth programs of various local churches of different denominations and help the youngsters to take right decision in their life. We help churches in conducting youth fellowship and other youth programs.
The Seminary students and faculty visit sick people in the hospitals, share our empathy with them and pray for them. If they are willing, we also leave tracks and gospel booklets for them to read. In future, we are planning to extent this ministry in to more hospitals in Allahabad.
When we visit many villages with the gospel, we find that the villagers are not in a position to read and write because the literacy is very less there. For various reasons, there are lots of school dropouts in the families. So we meet the parents and explain them the importance of education and appeal them to give higher education to their children. While visiting the villages, we also help the children to learn their school lessons.
In many of the villages, the adult members are uneducated and thus do not know the importance of education. Hence, along with giving awareness about literacy we are helping them to read and write. In order to help the adult members of many villages in a systematic way we are planning to start adult literacy programs in few villages soon. This would help them to improve in their life’s standards and would enable them to know what is happening in the world. This also would help them in their trade and transactions and will develop their life style.
One of the outreach ministry team is doing ministry in a village called Logharah about 45 kilometers away from ABS. Most of the people living in this village are snake champers. The life condition in this village is very pathetic. There is no hygiene in this village and no good drinking water is available. Since there is no proper water source in this village, the people do not even take bath regularly. They do not cut their nail and hair properly. Through the practical ministry team we teach them good habits, give them awareness about cleanliness and hygiene. We also cut those children’s nail and teach them to be neat and clean. Not only that, there is no much awareness about family planning. Even ladies of 55 years of age have small kids. Khelwa is another village, where a woman of 35 years of age has 8 children. In order to help them in this matter, some time we take medical personalities to explain them about family planning. We are also planning to conduct regular medical camps in few of these villages, where they do not have any medical facilities and proper transport systems. We believe, this effort would help the villagers in a minimal level to improve their health conditions and they would be benefited.
Allahabad Bible Seminary believes in the wholistic ministry. Thus we involve in helping the poor and needy through the generous giving of the faculty and students. Often we visit orphan children in Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity homes, spend time with them and help the kids with some gifts. In the winter, we find that there are lots of poor people and rickshaw pullers sleeping on the footpath and railway stations with out proper cloths to protect themselves from the cold. On humanitarian way we collect blankets and winter cloths from faculty and students and give them. This is another small way we try to identify ourselves with the everyday struggles of the poor sections of our society.
TLM is doing a tremendous job in various ways, especially in the midst of people affected with leprosy. It is well known that lepers are living with great stigma. We visit the TLM hospital in Naini very often and spend time with the patients. It’s amazing to talk with them and to know about their feelings and emotions. We also share our love with them through some eatable and other materials. TLM Naini has a chapel and worship service is being conducted for the patients, staff and for the nearby villagers. ABS faculty also helps them in their spiritual activities by worshiping with them every Sunday and sharing God’s word with them. It is a great blessing to them as well as ABS.
In the early church, believers gathered in houses for prayer and fellowship. ABS follows the Biblical principles and has started worship groups in different places in and around Allahabad. At present we have such groups in seven places. People gather there every Sundays with faith and enthusiasm. Singing, witnessing, praying, sharing of the word of God and fellowshipping are the main features of these gatherings. Our students and faculty members involve in this ministry with great joy. We are planning to start such worship groups in many places.
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