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With just a few weeks to go before our 5th Global Convocation, the 32 stories on the reverse side of this letter reporting recent atrocities against believers inIndia underscore the incredible challenges facing believers in India and around the globe. Compiled by Dr. Richard Howell, General Secretary of the Evangelical Fellowship of India (EFI), the horrific events in the State of Orissa include killing pastors, priests, nuns and other believers, burning scores of churches, orphanages, buses and homes.
In 2000, Dr. Howell brought several Indian lawyers and a Member of India's Parliament to Advocates' 3rd Global Convocation. When they saw what Christian lawyers can do when they get organized, our Indian colleagues returned home to launch the Christian Lawyers Association of India (CLAI). We provided some initial seed money. Today CLAI links over 600 Christian lawyers, judges and law students who are using their training for Christ and his Kingdom. They are on the frontlines helping the Church respond to growing discrimination and persecution. There may never have been a worse time when Christian lawyers were needed more in India than today where 30 million believers from various Christian traditions seek to live at peace among 1.1 billion Indians.
In 1991, there were only two nations with proactive national Christian lawyer groups promoting religious freedom, justice, peacemaking, life and family issues. Today, there are about 100 nations with groups. Most of them were launched at Advocates' conferences.
We hope to see 500 colleagues from 100 nations at the Convocation. Most will return home re-energized to be a voice for the powerless in their nations.
As you can see, we have received over 70% of the funds needed to enable our international colleagues to attend this historic event. They will focus on networking, training and strategizing locally, nationally, regionally and globally.
I'm the eternal optimist because the tomb is empty and God is sovereign. But I have no doubt that Christian lawyers must be mobilized and trained in advocacy.
We invite you to impact one nation or continent for Christ by supporting a delegate, while...
Living in His-Story,
Samuel E. Ericsson
Founder & President