Making a Movie that Sparks a Movement
A film team arrived in the outer villages of major city in India. There they searched for local actors and cultural advisors. Working together with the Banjara people they crafted a story, a script for a movie. In time, their film TRANSFORMATION would live up to its name—in ways they could not have imagined.
A strategically focused film team
The film team was from Create International, a communication ministry of Youth With A Mission. Their purpose is to “Declare God’s glory in all the world” by producing and distributing indigenous media resources. They help start and strengthen evangelistic and church planting efforts among Unreached Peoples.
Calvin and Carol Conkey are the pioneer founders. With their international teams, they focus on the least evangelized mega people groups of the world. Special priority: the 160 peoples with a population over one million.
As your read the story Calvin has for us, you’ll know why they wholeheartedly keep doing what they do.
“The Banjara is a Hindu group of nearly 60 million people scattered about the country. More than 15 years ago Create International was asked to produce an indigenous gospel film for this people group.
“We filmed on location and field tested it. The film entitled ‘Transformation’ was then handed over to the local workers to be used in their church planting work.
Unbelievable, joyful reunion
“After five years had passed, Carol and I were invited back to India. We were to celebrate what the Lord had done through the showing of the film. We were to join a gathering of people at the location where they were planning to build a Bible School. We traveled for miles by taxi on dusty dirt roads, until coming upon a banner strung across the road. It read ‘Welcome Conkeys‘.
“This was completely unexpected. But the shock of this was nothing compared to what we saw next. As we drove over the dusty hill, we saw the valley below. There were 12,000 Banjara people gathered there, singing and dancing! They had created temporary shelters made of bamboo and cardboard. They covered several acres of land. After exiting our taxi we were quickly rushed to the stage. We joined with others praying and anointing individuals with oil. The line was so long that it took us three hours to pray for everyone- men, women, children, and even animals!
“We met and took pictures with several of the actors and participants in the film. We interviewed some of the church planters. They said more than 10,000 Banjara people had already come to Christ after watching the film. We asked the Banjara workers how they used the film. They told us, ‘We show the film, people give their life to Jesus, and so we start a church in that village. This is how we have more than 500 new churches!’
“They continued telling us story after story of miracles and of families being set free by Jesus. Naturally, we were so encouraged. For several days we rejoiced together with the Banjara believers. They brought their non-believing friends and family to watch the film at night. What an incredible privilege to play a part of what God was doing to reach these precious people.
YouTube brings more
“But the story was not over yet. As has happened several times in the past, these stories seem to have multiple layers of revelation. Just three months ago one of our staff made a discovery. He was researching how our films are being used on YouTube. He saw that an actor in the Banjara film uploaded it to his own personal YouTube account.
“The viewer count verified that the film had been watched by 750,000 Banjara speaking people! Once again, something was happening that was beyond our knowledge and expectation.
“This was confirmed while attending a Disciple-Making Movement (DMM) strategy meeting. A renown DMM strategist shared about his recent trip to India. He witnessed a significant move of hundreds of thousands of people coming into the Kingdom. When he mentioned that the name of the group was the Banjara, Carol and I nearly fell off our seats.
Spreading to 200 other people groups
“Upon returning home I emailed our missionary contact and Banjara workers in India. I wanted to try and find out what the Lord was doing. They very quickly responded. They excitedly thanked us once again for the film we had produced for the Banjara people.
“I then recounted the story of the 10,000 Banjaras that had come to Christ several years ago. His response was, Oh brother, it is not 10,000 believers. It is two million!
“Two million Banjaras had given their lives to Christ. And next, they had trained 10,000 church planters. These are now working in 23 states reaching out to 200 different unreached people groups.”
A leading role for you too?
Would you like to be a part of creating resources that make such an amazing impact? Check out Create International.
There are also lots of similar possibilities for you. Effectively using existing media resources, you can spread the gospel and help launch Disciple-Making Movements among Unreached Peoples. It’s possible to even be actively involved from home. Find out more about Media to Movements and start using your skills to reach lost people around the world today.