(names changed to protect privacy)
Silas, was a nominal believer and never went to church because he strongly believed that there was no church with sound Bible teaching. A former Veritas training participant invited Silas and he attended only to see what was happening. However, the Lord spoke to his heart and he stayed. His wife was very surprised to see him attending the training from 9am to 5pm for 8 continuous days. The Word of God, clearly taught, transformed his life.
From a staff member
What was meant for harm turned to our good
In August 2012, a colleague and I went from Delhi to give Veritas training in Chhattisgarh, on the border of Odisha, in central India. On arrival at the arranged place, our hosts neither welcomed us nor gave us even a glass of water. After waiting for about 6 hours, we were shocked to realize that we had been rejected and felt utter humiliation. Having no other option, we muttered to ourselves, ‘What are we going to do with the 40 books and all the expenses we‘ve made to reach here?’ We had our return tickets to Delhi, but they were for 6 days later, after the planned training. We phoned many friends in the area where we might be able to give training but no opportunities opened up so we decided to return to Delhi.
We phoned and asked our colleagues in Delhi to pray for us, and went to wait at the railway station to return to Delhi, almost 50 hours without berth reservations. Our despondent discussions caught the attention of a stranger in the waiting room. After an hour of talking with him, we realized he was a Christian; he was travelling from Bhubaneswar, capital city of Odisha, to Koraput in the southern part of the state, to his father-in-law’s house. When his relatives arrived to pick him up, he told them about our situation. After only 15 minutes discussion, one of them, Pastor Asha, asked us, ‘Do you want to come and train our church workers and leaders? That is, if you can manage with the facilities and time that we have available?’ Suddenly, we could see a warm welcome and love for us from all these new people. We thanked God and set out for the new opportunity before us.
‘We never knew that the Bible could be studied like this’, one of the pastors said after the training. Most of these pastors were graduates of a well-known theological seminary. Now they were challenged to cleaned up their lives. They left the training enthusiastically sharing their love for the Lord and leading new prayer and fellowship meetings. One assistant pastor did not really know how to preach but now he is preaching much better and the quality of pastoral leadership in his church has improved.
One girl who was studying at a Bible College in heard about the VERITAS training and wanted to leave her formal studies. She asked for training dates to be postponed so that she could attend. We advised her to rather ask her church leaders to invite Veritas for training of their own. She did this and a class of 10-15 people has been set up.
Pastor Asha has witnessed great feedback and transformation in his church. He wants 10 leaders in each of 30 districts in Odisha to have VERITAS training. Though local leaders are responsible for their own expenses, God provided wonderfully and various groups were trained. Pastor Asha took care of some participants’ travel and all other expenses. All the church leaders experienced much fruit and spiritual freshness in their lives and want to conduct Veritas training in their own churches. Some churches have completed all four modules, while a number of other towns are in line for week-long training.
This incident has amazed me; it was God’s sovereignty that led us to meet a man out of nowhere, who now has a great vision for his church in Odisha and is a wonderful friend of VERITAS. God’s ways are wonderful and beyond anything we can imagine.
In new territory for His glory, a mainline church - Phulbani Diocese
Ordained pastors and lay leaders of a well-known mainline church were thrilled with the Integrated Leadership Development Veritas brought to their local congregations. They were truly committed to receive the full benefit and over time, completed all 4 the training modules, also constantly introducing Veritas training to others. Their Diocesan Treasurer attended one such meeting to evaluate the input. He stayed for more. On the last day, he said, “Sir, I sat here to see if this was any wrong teaching, since we have so much around us, and wanted to stop it if necessary. But, I am so much blessed through this study that I could not help sitting through all the classes despite my difficulties. And now, we as a committee have decided to take this training to every pastorate that comes under us”.
There and then, they named some 6 to 8 places where we will have trainings in 2016. These places fall within 3 very poor, neglected and often persecuted districts in Odisha. We anticipate that this will pave the way for Veritas to touch more new districts where people may be eating mango stones for lack of food, but are eager for God's Word.
We are encouraged to see older people also attending the training. It seems God is bringing revival at the leadership level. Churches spend more time in worship and learning the Word in mid-week prayer and Bible study groups. In one church, they are even praying for one hour three times a day. There is much evidence of positive changes in knowledge, character and skills, which are the aims of Veritas. God is touching and opening many people’s hearts, using the Veritas ministry to open His Word through His Spirit, refreshing this mainline church.
What people say about Veritas College:
"Leaders can ‘serve while learning’. They do not have to leave their ministries to go away and study; if they do, sometimes they don’t return!"
"Leaders are trained for much less cost than residential training."
"Veritas College truly fulfils the need for theological training."
"Veritas gave me a wonderful new love of reading and studying my Bible."