Malawi (MNN) — Television is a tool God is using not only to mobilize the church for evangelism, but to reach an entire nation. "My Hope" is the effort of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association to penetrate every country of the world with culturally-sensitive Gospel broadcasts.
Through television partners, "My Hope" is partnering with thousands of churches worldwide to bring large numbers of friends, family and neighbors into a relationship with Jesus Christ.
Hans Mannegren is the director of international ministries with BGEA. He says "My Hope" was an idea fostered by Billy Graham's son. "Franklin Graham wanted to see his father's ministry to continue even though he couldn't travel around the world."
Mannegren says when they go into a country, they invite the whole body of Christ "to do evangelism on a national scale. From there, we invite churches to be trained to be what we call 'Matthews.'"
Matthew left everything to follow Christ. He also held a banquet in Christ's honor, inviting his tax collector friends and other sinners to come meet Him. Mannegren says, "They pray for 10 people each, then they invite them into their homes, and that's how they watch the program with their friends."
"My Hope" began in 2002 and has had initiatives in 50 nations. However, BGEA is expanding that. They're working in a couple of unnamed countries in Asia, Malawi, Haiti, Portugal and Spain.
Malawi will be the location of the next "My Hope" telecast — "November 4, 5, and 6. Over 4,500 churches have been trained already in Malawi. National television has given us a 7:30 to 8:00 time slot," says Mannegren.
"They will see a 30-minute broadcast with both local and national musicians and testimonies and endorsements. And then, we'll have a short sermon from Billy Graham. And one night we'll have Franklin Graham speaking about the prodigal son."
Malawi has been plagued with HIV/AIDS, food shortages and political scandals. Mannegren says, "They need hope for tomorrow. They need to know that the only hope that will satisfy is Jesus. He's the hope for today and for eternity."
Mannegren is asking Christians to begin praying for those who will be hosting viewings of "My Hope" in their homes. Pray that God will not only use the telecasts, but they He'll use these "Matthews" to help lead people to Himself.
You can help support training efforts. $20 will help train 10 families to be Matthew telecast hosts. This funding will help not only the work in Malawi, but upcoming events as well.