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Articles by Mike Creswell

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Ask people around Bangalore, India, what a Christian looks like and many would describe Dr. Rebekah Naylor, the Southern Baptist missionary surgeon who has labored at Bangalore Baptist Hospital for the past thirty years.

Some have seen Dr. Naylor, the cool, precise, professional medical doctor who has performed countless surgeries and other medical procedures. She has saved lives, delivered babies, and relieved suffering for thousands of people over the years.

But others know her through her soft-spoken but persistent sharing of the gospel, her training and encouragement of Indian Baptists in how to witness and plant churches. In this role she has helped bring eternal life to thousands of people and relieved the spiritual suffering known by many here who fear Hinduism's vengeful gods.


The Unfinished Task: Planting With Passion

Secretly gathered behind closed doors, they study their Bibles. Professing belief in the Scriptures can result in violent attacks or worse.

They are hundreds of Muslims across Israel and Palestine who have come to know Christ as Savior over the past year. Small groups of new believers scatter across the troubled region as they share a newly found faith with others in their extended families of parents, uncles, aunts — and sometimes multiple wives.

This is not the kind of movement Southern Baptists are likely to see covered on their six o'clock news, and it does not yet constitute a church planting movement. Nevertheless, the new responsiveness has created a sense of urgency and expectancy among Christian workers in the region.

"I've been working among these people for thirty years, and I've never seen anything like this," one Southern Baptist worker marveled. "God is moving here like we've never seen before. It is the first...

Southern Baptist Ministry to Chechen Refugees

Death, devastation, and suffering are as plentiful as dirt. Hope is a scarce and precious commodity.

That's how a three-man team of Southern Baptist mission workers described life in and around Chechnya, the republic in the Caucasus region south of Russia. Many thousands have died and untold thousands have fled their homes after Chechen rebels waged an unsuccessful war for independence from Russia.

Southern Baptists will give more than $120,000 in relief aid to help Russian Baptists and local authorities provide food, clothing, shelter, and rehabilitation for some of the refugees who have flooded out of Chechnya.

Missionaries Mark Edworthy and Richard Bell traveled with International Mission Board human needs consultant Jim Brown for eight days in early June along the outskirts of Chechnya to see war's ugly results.

The team got only as far as Nal'chik, in Russia's Karbardino-Balkarskaya republic, some sixty miles from the Chechen border...

If you ask Ray Register how his work is going, you'll see his face light up and hear excitement edge into his voice. You will hear how he saw more results in evangelism during 1996 than in thirty years of ministry in the Galilee.

For three decades this veteran Southern Baptist Foreign Mission Board worker has traveled the highways and back roads, sharing the gospel with thousands of people in the small villages that dot this rugged land.

In the past two years, things have changed.

Now he is working with a small congregation of ten believers in one of the many new communities springing up not in Galilee, but between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Register and his wife, Rose Mary, have moved to this area to be closer to the believers. It is a career and spiritual high for Ray. And he likes it.

In Israel, after 2,000 years, church starts are still among the slowest in the world. A ten-member congregation is a miracle of God, a flower blooming in a desert. &q...