subscribe | tell a friend | printer-friendly version

Locally-created Reads Equip Readers

- 09/01/08  

Forward this message to a friend

September-October 2008


< Kenyan Publisher Seeks to Equip African Leaders

<  Sri Lanka: Bible College Publishing Meets Island Needs
<  Asia: The Written Word Will Transform Lives
<  Reading up on Africa

Hi, ! 

In this issue, meet several outstanding servant-leaders who are working to equip other leaders in their own countries and beyond. You'll read about a Kenyan author's new book on leadership, and how a Sri Lankan publisher meets the needs of church leaders on his island-nation.  


Kenyan Publisher Seeks to Equip African Leaders

When Barine Karimi is not vision-casting or troubleshooting as director of Evangel Publishing House in Nairobi, he’s wearing multiple leadership hats.  Besides chairing the local committee for LittWorld 2009, this Kenyan publisher and author also chairs the Christian Trade Association and teaches leadership classes at Pan Africa Christian University and elsewhere. His new book, Successful Leadership: Eight essential principles you must know, seeks to equip Africans for servant leadership.

Barine had read many helpful resources on leadership from the West, but they lacked examples with which Africans could identify. “I sought to bridge the gap,” he says.

Alongside illustrations from biblical role models and other well-known figures, his book includes lessons from African political and ministry leaders, including his personal experiences.

The title is already reaching the hands of influential Kenyans. At a recent book launch, Barine says, “I met a lady who has a ministry to the wives of the top political leaders in our country. She presented a couple of copies to several spouses of top politicians just before last year's general election. She was very positive.”

The book has been published in Kenya, the Philippines and the U.S., and is available on

Sri Lanka: Bible College Publishing Meets Island Needs

A decade ago, Caleb Sri Karnakumar launched the publishing division of Lanka Bible College, seeking to address the dearth of theological books in Sri Lanka. Since then he has helped develop more than 250 titles for church and lay leaders in the island nation’s Sinhala and Tamil languages.

Q: You publish 10 to 12 books a year. How do the college and publishing division work together to accomplish this?
Our local authors are mainly faculty members. When they prepare materials for teaching, we develop these notes as textbooks and then put them to the field test in the classroom. Eventually we edit these text books and fully develop them into books with comments and evaluations from students and other readers.

Q: Talk about a couple of your bestsellers by local authors.
The Bible Atlas was a team project of the LBCS faculty and is selling quickly island-wide. We didn’t have a single Bible atlas book in our languages before.

A Christian Answer to Jehovah’s Witnesses—Many Jehovah's Witnesses are actively evangelizing in Sri Lanka. The Christian community needs to know how to defend our faith against such sects.

Q: How do you strive to encourage and develop your authors?
We organize and heavily promote public book release ceremonies for our authors at local churches. We also pay them royalties. And, we conduct writer workshops annually.

Q: How do you market your books?
We market through our alumni network both locally and abroad in Asia, Europe and the Middle East. We also have more than 20 extension centers for reaching students with books. When current students return home for vacation, they sell books in their churches. And, we publicize new books through email. 
Q: Have you been affected by strife between Buddhists and Christians in your country? 
Our students have problems due to the religious tensions. Recently one of our alumni was killed. Please pray for us, the welfare of our staff, faculty and their families, our students and for the development of Christian literature ministry. Pray that God may raise many more effective Christian writers in Sri Lanka.


The Written Word
Will Transform Lives

Check out MAI's upcoming Asia Writer Conference in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Shoot up prayers for the creation of books and articles that make a difference for Asia. Or give a scholarship that allows an emerging writer to come who otherwise couldn't afford to.

Reading up on Africa

Half the fun of travel is reading about your destination before you go. So, let’s say you’re planning to attend LittWorld 2009 in Kenya (and I hope you are!). Maybe you’re curious about game parks and local politics, but you really want the scoop on the church in Africa.

So, why not start at beginning? Check out Thomas Oden’s How Africa Shaped the Christian Mind: Rediscovering the African Seedbed of Western Christianity (IVP Books, 2007). This book opened my eyes to the decisive impact of African Christianity on the formation of Christian culture.

From early Church leaders like Augustine, Origen and Tertullian, to desert fathers and the library in Alexandria, Africa has shaped world Christianity in significant ways. Oden’s greatest desire is that African Christians themselves—all 400 million of them—hear the stories of their rich Christian heritage, and that African scholars write and interpret the story of early African Christianity

For compelling stories of more recent African church leaders, take an online tour of the Dictionary of African Christian Biography. You’ll find profiles of pioneering church leaders across the continent, from Cairo to Cape Town.

This online dictionary is a true grassroots effort: Biographical materials are submitted by participating African seminaries, universities and research centers in 20 African countries, with the project managed by Michele Sigg at the Overseas Missions Study Center. So far, 1,515 stories have been posted.

Finally, get a feel for today’s African church and its leaders in the ground-breaking Africa Bible Commentary. Seventy African scholars contributed to this first one-volume Bible commentary produced in Africa by African theologians. Writers interpreted and applied the Bible in light of African culture and realities.

Interestingly, the African publisher of the commentary is WordAlive in Nairobi. And that brings us back to LittWorld: the director of WordAlive, David Waweru, sensed God’s leading to start a publishing house while attending LittWorld in England a decade ago.

We pray the next LittWorld—MAI’s first in Africa—will likewise result in new books and even publishing houses for Africa and beyond.


J O H N   M A U S T

M A I   P R E S I D E N T




marketing by Spire2 Inc.
email powered by Emma