The first semester of the seventh batch of Village Pastors Training (VPT) was organized in a small village called Zavda in Gujarat from May 2-4, 2016. Thirty-five participants are enrolled in this 2 year program and will go through 5 more semesters to complete the course by the end of 2017. The next session will be held from November 14-16, 2016. These people have no theological training and are semi-literate. This is organised in partnership with the Church of North India. The participants were identified after several visits to the tribal areas and comprise some the best candidates to be able to learn and also pass on what they learn to others.
During this first session we covered ‘The Basic Doctrines’, ‘Uniqueness of the Bible’ and ‘The Meaning & purpose of Church.’ In the evenings we had devotions based on the theme “Masters Requirement.”
Process of Teaching and Feedback
We have identified and appointed 3 team leaders and divided all the participants in to 3 groups. Each evening these leaders meet with the participants and hold discussions based on 3 questions:
- What new things have you learned?
- Do you have any questions from the sessions?
- Do you have any suggestions to give the teachers
After feedback they pray for one another. Then the leaders meet the VPT Dean and give their feedback. This greatly helps the teachers and facilitators to plan the following sessions.
“All the subjects were very new to me. First time I learnt about God and his attributes. I also learnt about Bible, church and other doctrines. I will share this teaching with my fellow preachers and my church congregation.”
– Girish Kokan
“I come from a small village and I have been serving the Lord since 10 years. For the first time I understood the consequences of sin. I praise God, that He sent Jesus for my sin. I was preaching many things but now I know how to preach with biblical insight.”
– Kokani Kalubhai
“Every topic taught was good and new to me. After getting such teaching now I can see the clear change in my faith. I have become more confident in preaching. I look forward for the next session.”
– Kamubhai Pavar