China (TWR/RHM/MNN) — If you had to pick only one language in which to preach the Gospel, which one would it be?
According to speaker, author, broadcaster and evangelist Ron Hutchcraft, it really should be Mandarin, because "Mandarin, by far, is the most spoken language on the planet."*
Hutchcraft explains, "We have a Christian radio program that is intentional about often presenting the Gospel and presenting the Gospel in non-religious language that people can understand. That turns out now, that in partnership with Trans World Radio, we have just been able to launch the Mandarin broadcast to the place where one out of five people live."
Specifically, Ron Hutchcraft Ministries (RHM) will be broadcasting (through the TWR partnership) the 4.5 minute short feature A Word With You to China in Mandarin. He says, "It's the simple format of a story, and then a Scripture, and then a ‘So what? So what if it says this?' It turns out that that format, we've been told, is going to be very powerful for the people of China because it's a story-telling culture."
The partnership has been nearly a decade in the making. Why bite now? Hutchcraft says it's time. Typically he talks with people "face-to-face, which I love to do in a room full of lost people. And I will continue to do that. But by way of radio and internet, I can present Jesus to more people in a week than I've done in an entire lifetime of all the face-to-face meetings I've ever had…maybe in a day….maybe in an hour."
TWR translates the program and produces the Mandarin version with a native speaker presenting Hutchcraft's words. The potential impact is uniquely God-timed, he adds. "God has given to our generation the single greatest rescue challenge in the history of the Church. Seven billion people. The orders haven't changed, only the numbers have changed: 'Go tell everyone, everywhere.' In that same generation, He has actually birthed the technology that will actually put that within reach."
Ralf Stores, TWR's director of ministry partnerships, said, "A Word With You fits in very strategically with TWR's commitment to reach the world's nearly 3 billion youth and children. Ron has a deep passion for reaching young people, and it is a joy and privilege to work side-by-side with a ministry that truly understands youth culture around the world and stops at nothing to reach them for Jesus."
Coincidentally, the first broadcast of A Word With You in Mandarin aired on April 2, the same week that Hutchcraft happened to be at TWR's international headquarters in Cary, North Carolina, to address the media organization's annual President's Forum. Stores presented him with a recorded copy of the program, which was broadcast to China on shortwave from TWR's major transmitter site on Guam.
Hutchcraft commented, "It's wonderful to know that I can sit in a radio studio [at] our headquarters, and what we do there, through a partnership with Trans World Radio, has the potential to get to the largest population in the world."
Calling the partnership a three-way heart match (between God's heart, TWR's mission, and Ron Hutchcraft's passion for evangelism), he also noted that this wouldn't be possible without the support of others in the body of Christ. "You have the front lines warriors, but you also have the prayer warriors. Then there are the supply warriors who support what's going on. The Bible says this about them: ‘How can they hear unless someone preaches; how someone can preach unless they are sent? '"
Want to see it for yourself? Click here to watch a video from the TWR "Mandarin Voice" who will be the voice of Ron Hutchcraft for the A Word With You programs translated into Mandarin.
*Audio taken from a studio interview at TWR headquarters in Cary, NC between Ron Hutchcraft and David McCreery, director of marketing and communications for the TWR Americas Region.