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August, 2013 CHAI TIMES
August, 2013


Therefore go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Son, of the Father, and of the Holy Spirit.” Matthew 28:19

The Date Is Set!!

January 23rd, 2014 has been set as your next chance to serve in

Assam. The people of Assam need

you and, more importantly, you need this mission. Every person I have ever

met that has participated in a short term mission agrees that the trip

changed them as much as it changed

the people they interacted with. As of this publishing date, I don’t

have all the details for the trip. What I can tell you is that in the last two years

there has been a lot of progress made

in planting house churches and starting small group studies. You will

work with Uttam Dhela, the missionary

profiled in the last issue, and his team to further this effort. In addition to

sharing the gospel in a land that desperately needs it, you will also

provide health education about HIV/

AIDS and malaria prevention. These missions are a partnership

with local churches so you have plenty of time to develop the types of

relationships that I hold so dear with

the Assamese.




MARK YOUR CALENDARS Never mind. Don’t mark your calendars. Instead, go to and register

to go on this trip.

it will change your life!!

I promise



AUDI0-BIBLE GOES AFIELD!! JUNE, 2013 A group of Americans led by Tom Parr, Charles Gulla, and

JUNE, 2013

A group of Americans led by Tom Parr, Charles Gulla, and Uttam Dehla, along with native volunteers, delivered the first Audio-Bibles to the mission field in Assam. Charles is pictured above, giving out the very first Assamese Audio-Bible.

These devices are solar powered mp3 players loaded with bible stories that have been narrated in the local language, Assamese. Each bible story is followed by six questions that encourage discussion about the passage

This is an effective tool in a region where a large part of the population is illiterate. Thirty were distributed and it is hoped that funding can be secured to purchase more.

it is hoped that funding can be secured to purchase more. Uttam Dehla sharing the gospel

Uttam Dehla sharing the gospel during this last Junes church- planting mission to Assam.

Idols, idols everywhere, and not a god to thank.

One of the things you’ll notice when you get to India is that religion is

an integral part of life. You will see

guru’s on street corners, people dressed in religious garb, and idols.

Lots of idols. On the dash of the motor-

rickshaw, painted on the front of a

truck, in the alley next to a banyan tree. They are simply everywhere.

The traditional figure given for the number of gods in Hinduism is 330

million. This isn’t the result of an

actual count, but rather a reference to the fact that in Hinduism, nearly

everything is a part of god and god is in everything. Still, the list of deities is

in the several hundreds.

The odd thing is that these gods control nearly every aspect of Hindu

life and yet not a one of them exhibits those attributes we assign to God.

Mercy, grace, justice, caring. These

are all foreign concepts when it comes to the average Hindu and their

relationship to their many gods. And yet still they worship and pray

and sacrifice to these gods. Often

with extreme diligence. On my first trip to India we had one driver that

was so concerned with offending his god, that each time we passed near a

shrine to this god, he would pull over,

stop the vehicle, and get out. He would run to shrine, genuflect, and

jump back into the cab and carry on as if nothing had happened.

Imagine the surprise most Hindu’s

experience when they are told that there is a God who loves them and

cares for them and desires a relationship with them.

when they are told that there is a God who loves them and cares for them


Chai, glorious chai!

So here we are, the second issue of

Chai Times, and I haven’t really written about

the magazine’s name sake yet. It’s time to

correct that.

First up: Street Chai. It’s generally

recommended that you avoid food from

street vendors. Fortunately, chai is pretty

much exempt from this rule. Walk up and

order “chai masala” if you want the hot tea

with milk, sugar, and spices. It will be served

to you in a little plastic cup that is so thin,

you wonder how it holds liquid.

Second up: Home brew in the field.

Most places you visit, you will be offered tea.

Do not refuse. First off, it would be rude.

Secondly, you’ll likely miss out on something

delicious. It might be red tea, chai masala,

or black tea with sugar. Most likely you will

also get “biscuits.” That’s Brit speak for a


The odd

thing to



is that

most likely,

your host

won’t join you. You will be shown to a room

in the house or a special part of the

courtyard, served, and left alone. Take it in

stride. You’re the honored guest

left alone. Take it in stride. You’re the honored guest Finally, home chai. It’s fairly likely

Finally, home chai. It’s fairly likely that

once you get back to the States you will

have a hankering every once in a while for

some chai. Resist the temptation to

purchase that powdered junk at your local

coffee shop. There are several home brew

chai blends that are available at your local

grocer. Brew it using 2 parts water to 1 part

milk. Add some sugar or honey. This has

become my Sunday afternoon ritual.



Prayer is one of the most significant things you can do for the mission in Assam. Pray for the safety of Uttams team, for the effectiveness of their ministry, and for the continuing education and growth of the new believers and house churches started by this ministry. Finally, pray about what else you could do for this mission.


This is an ongoing initiative in this region of the world. While expenses for the native pastors and workers seem small by Western standards, they do need support. You can also support those Americans that are traveling to India to take part in these missions. For information on how to give, go to


THE DATES ARE SET!!!!! The dates have been set for the Winter 2014 trip to Assam. This winter’s trip will be from January 23-February 2nd. The details aren’t set, but there is the possibility that this will be a medical mission. For more information contact me or go to


To find out more about e3 Partners Ministry and their initiatives around the world, go to To follow my own trips to India and get even more insight into India and what a trip there is like, go


A Day In The Life

Are you thinking about the January 2014

trip and wondering what you’ll be doing in

the field? Here’s a rundown of a typical day

while you’re on an India mission.

7:00am: A short I Am Second bible

study with the rest of your team members.

7:30am: Breakfast with your team that

includes goodies like daal, stir fried veggies,

and even a cheese omelet if you like.

8:15am: Load up and travel to

rendezvous with the local church members

and field workers.

10:00am: After a bit more travel, you’ve

arrived at may be the first of several stops

for the day. You meet with a group of

villagers numbering from 10-50 and share

information about yourself and learn about

their lives. Follow that with presenting AIDS/

HIV and malaria prevention information and a

gospel presentation using the Evangicube.

You’re nervous the first time, but the

friendliness of the villagers and competence

of your translators soon puts you at ease.

12:00pm: Lunch with your field team

and translators in the field. PB&J and a

banana are standard fare. This, along with

the tea and cookies the villagers serve you,

will tide you over until dinner.

1:00pm: Back on the road to another

village or neighborhood where you’ll repeat

the interactions you had this morning with

another group of people.

5:00pm: Back to your hotel where you’ll

have some free time to take a nap, explore

the neighborhood, reflect on the day’s

activities, or whatever you’d like.

6:30pm: Meet with your American team

to discuss the days events and then finish off

with a meal of Indian food.

8:00pm: More free time. Check in with

your family back home via email or Skype,

read your bible, or try and figure out what

that odd program on the tv in your room is all


Thus ends your typical day. It’s filled

with people, places, and experiences that

will change you forever.

INDIA: children suffer from malnutrition in India than in sub-saharan Africa. The British called it
children suffer from
malnutrition in India than in
sub-saharan Africa.
The British called it “The Jewel In
The Crown” of their empire. The
1.2 Billion People
country has been invaded, ruled by
As you can imagine,
with that many people the
other peoples, and even while the
English held control for nearly two
diversity of India’s
population is unmatched.
centuries, they never truly conquered
it’s people.
This issue of Chai Times
India is a home for paradox and
hopes to introduce you to
one group, the
It is the land that, in
Join the
time of old, practiced suttee, the cruel
Assamese. You will learn
a bit about it’s people
journey to
ritual of burning a man’s widow alive
on her husband’s funeral pyre, and yet
and the work being done
produced the simple, forgiving, and
there in an effort to improve
their daily lives.
inspiring passive resistance
championed by Ghandi. It is one of
the few countries that actually
experienced economic growth during
the recent global recession; yet, more


God answered our prayers (yours and ours) on our most recent trip to Assam, India. With only a team of four Americans, our National Director, and our team of evangelists in Sonitpur District, over 400 people heard the Good News during our four days in the field. We witnessed 48 people professing new faith in Jesus Christ and one new bible study fellowship (called satsangs in India) started while we were there. Powered by your prayers and the power of the Holy Spirit, we were also able to place 22 of the new AudioBible units, with 48 biblical stories in Assamese in the house churches and satsangs that have been created through mission work done by our teams since last January.

There are 10 house churches and 12 satsangs who have a new tool that tells them a biblical story, directly from scripture, and then leads them through six discussion questions to help them fully embrace the lessons they have heard from God’s word. The picture in this issues feature about the AudioBible shows Charles Golla, e3 National Director for Indai, giving the first AudioBible to a young woman who volunteered to lead the new satsang we created at a tea estate in Sonitpur. The AudioBibles will greatly enhance the discipleship process for new Indian believers and increase the retention rate of new churches started in this part of Assam. We were also able to enter two new Hindu villages, where preaching the gospel was previously outlawed, through two new partners that came to us through the coalition trainings we put on in January.

God is doing great things with the investments we have made with the time, talents, treasures, and prayers of our American and Indian ministry partners. We give Him all the praise and glory for these new developments and thank you for your support.

Tom Parr, Church Planter e3 Partners Ministry