Leadership Development Overview
David C Cook equipped pastors with print commentaries. The photo to the right shows thousands of Bible commentaries on the way to Africa. These Warren Wiersbe books on Isaiah are part of starter libraries David C Cook provided to at least 15,000 new pastors there each year. We combined your donations with giving from our earnings and, because Cook already owns publishing rights, there is no cost whatever for leaders in not only Africa, but also Asia and Latin America, who get their first Bible study resources.
More than books, these resources were and still are in some cases, a lifeline for eager, but ill-equipped leaders. Pastors needed help avoiding bizarre ideas that are such a danger for immature believers. Without basic study guides, new churches and new Christians often fall prey to heresies that badly distort their understanding of the Gospel. It’s ironic that, in so many places where the Church is growing exponentially, most pastors and teachers have no formal training and few, if any, Bible study materials. Equipping these workers is a top priority.
Here are just a few examples where your giving was used to put a firm foundation under new and growing churches:
China: There are a dozen seminaries inside China and many informal training programs, but the majority of church leaders remain lay people with no formal training. Cook began supplying them with essential books legally and in large volume more than ten years ago. We now produce an average of six new titles each year for believers and local church leaders in China.
Cuba: Because of closed borders and limited Internet access, church resources are in extremely short supply. Following years of careful negotiation with the Bible Society of Cuba, the Cuban Council of Churches, their government and ours, today Cook is the leading provider of resources to churches throughout the island nation. We provide Sunday school curriculum, colorful Picture Bibles for children, training on leadership and libraries for pastors. Cubans are outspoken about how important this is to them. Watch them explain in their own words.
India: While believers are generally free to study and train throughout India, widespread illiteracy contributes to a significant good news-bad news problem. The good news is the amazing explosion in the number of new churches. The bad news is that leadership development lags far beyond that growth. David C Cook is stepping in here, as in other nations, by delivering choice study materials directly to the leaders and believers who need them. More than 100,000 Indian pastors and teachers have received from Cook libraries of 18 volumes each. At the same time we are constantly adding resources to serve even more.
As you can imagine, printing and distributing books around the globe is expensive. And in some areas, dangerous. As technology has advanced, the methods to get materials to new pastors has also changed – and made it safer.
Starting in early 2012, Cook began providing tiny SD cards for pastors to plug into their inexpensive mobile phones. The cards contain audio recordings of more than a dozen Bible commentaries totaling 65 hours of basic Bible training and is available in five languages: Hindi, Punjabi, Malayalam, Gujarati and Nepali. In addition, pastors can also call up text of the books on their phone screens.
One pastor excitedly told us how much this means to him. He explained that, though he leads three small churches, he must support himself by working as a carpenter. Now he is able to study while he works.
David C Cook is supporting the local Church this way in dozens of countries. Several are in places we cannot safely publicize such as strict Islamic countries where our extensive resources are, nonetheless, reaching Christian hands.
When it comes to befriending and encouraging the Church around the world, nothing counts more helping pastors and teaching the teachers.
Technology is advancing faster than ever before. Although no longer producing SD cards, David C Cook is always seeking new ways to help local ministries disciple new believers around the world.