Moving Forward: ASI Project Update
Youth on Fire
With support from the 2007 ASI Convention offering, Adventist Southeast Asia Projects (ASAP) launched a program to equip thirty young people for ministry. They received materials—Bibles, New Beginnings DVDs and pamphlets—and training on subjects such as prayer, outreach, and how to deal with the police.
The government in Vietnam remains Communist, and while liberalizing in some ways, local authorities do not allow active evangelism. They continue to make every attempt to hinder the growth of Christianity.
Pastor Isaiah Duong, leader of the Vietnam Adventist underground movement, comments, “I have seen God use the ASAP youth evangelists in a special way. They often go undetected by the police. For instance, on the way to a Bible study with backpacks full of religious materials, they look like students headed to a study group.”
But there have been cases where the youth evangelists have lost their privilege of attending university in Vietnam when the government discovered they were Seventh-day Adventist Christians. However, this does not sway their faith. More than 150 new house-church groups have started in the past two years because of the leadership of these youth evangelists. The impact of their active outreach efforts is immeasurable.
“I am not afraid because I believe in God’s promises that say if I walk through the fire He will be there,” one of the youth evangelists said in a recent interview. “Before my brother and I go out distributing DVDs and evangelistic tracts, we always pray. We know the content of these materials well, and have separated them into categories for people of different backgrounds. We know which ones will touch the heart of the Buddhists, the Animists, Catholics and Protestants. This helps us be successful, but the main reason for our success is prayer.”
A few months ago, during a massive DVD distribution campaign, an ASAP youth evangelist handed an 18-year-old a DVD. He took it home, watched it, and got so excited about its message that he burned 1,000 copies of it and shared it with family, friends and people at his church.
The church’s priest soon discovered the DVDs, and told the congregation not to watch them. But many already had, and asked the priest why, if the DVDs were about God’s Word, they should stop watching them.
The young man’s father was personally moved by both the DVD and his son’s newfound passion. So he contacted an ASAP lay pastor, who began studying the Bible with people from the church. Please pray for this group and the many others like them secretly meeting throughout Vietnam.
Last year, God provided a way for ASAP to offer quarterly training sessions for youth evangelist leaders, who in turn train other young people to serve. ASAP plans to train ten such leaders in 2009.
Visit www.ASAPministries.org or call 866-365-3541 for more information, or to obtain a free copy of Standing for God, a video depicting the ASAP youth evangelists in action.