“The first time in history” is a strong phrase to use in describing an event. But it’s the phrase that Lutheran Hour Ministries—Vietnam Director Mr. Dinh Hai Au uses in writing about the ministry center’s Christmas show in the community of Thuan My on December 17.
It began months earlier—with an eyeglass clinic outreach.
“We have held our eyeglass clinics in different rural areas of Vietnam,” says Hai Au, “including twice in Thuan My ward, in the Chau Thanh district of Tien Giang province. As a result, the local government in Thuan My has become very friendly toward us and toward the congregation we partner with there.
“This is why at Christmas 2013, for the first time in history, the government allowed a live evangelistic music performance outside the church! The music show was presented at the Culture Center of Thuan My—which is where we had held our eyeglass clinic in April.”
Equally amazed is Pastor Kiem, who serves the Thuan My congregation. “No church has ever held a performance like this in public,” he said. “I could not have imagined that the government would give us permission!”
More than 900 people attended, and more than 150 of them expressed a desire to learn how to become Christians. According to Pastor Kiem, this response is also largely attributable to the LHM center’s ministry efforts.
“We were able to invite so many people because LHM—Vietnam’s Equipping the Saints training has effectively equipped our church’s deacons and other members to send out invitations and to go door-to-door to make friends and promote the event,” he said. The church has been engaged in follow-up ministry since the event, primarily responding to requests for Lutheran Hour Ministries materials about alcoholism and other life issues.
“Thanks to all who help us with our ministries here in Vietnam, especially the eye glasses project,” says Hai Au. “We wish you and your family a blessed New Year in God’s love. Thanks be to the Lord!”