New Faith-Based Outreach Eyes Migrants, Others in Texas Bible Belt

A ministry that shares the Bible with people in far-flung corners of the world is embarking on a new faith outreach — this time, in the heart of America’s own Bible belt.

As desperate migrants from Central America and other countries flood into Texas, Bible League International (BLI, www.bibleleague.org) says thousands of people in Dallas-Fort Worth — a migrant hub and core of the nation’s Bible-believing heartland — are crying out for a message of hope in the midst of the pandemic, political turmoil, and financial stress.

The organization — which has a ministry hub in Dallas — will launch the outreach at two Spanish-speaking churches in the DFW area in November, with a focus on sharing the Bible with children, including migrant children, and adults.

Nearly one in every five Dallas-Fort Worth residents are foreign-born.

“Bible League International takes the Bible to ‘the world,’ but now ‘the world’ has come to America,” said Jos Snoep, the organization’s president and CEO. “Dallas-Fort Worth is a microcosm of that. The current migrant crisis is the perfect opportunity for churches in the area to respond with the one book — the Bible — that offers good news and changes lives.”

“Dallas might be the ‘buckle’ of the Bible belt, but there are hundreds of thousands of people living here who’ve never read any of the Bible, heard the gospel, or experienced the love of Christ. We need to reach them with the ‘good news’,” he said.

Making the Bible Easy to Understand

The goal is to make it easy for people to “read the Bible and study it together in the language they know best,” Snoep said, pointing out that nearly 42% of Dallas’ 1.3 million residents are Latino-Hispanic, primarily Spanish-speakers. “We also want to help those looking for answers, as well as others who want to go deeper in their faith.”

BLI is launching its Bible study and discipleship outreach in DFW to coincide with International Day of the Bible, Nov. 21, and is inviting the city’s churches — including English-speaking, Spanish-speaking, and other ethnic churches — to join the effort.

Initial outreach training events will take place at Centro Evangelistico Hispano Church in Mesquite, Nov. 11, and IDD Life Fellowship en Espanol in Hurst, Nov. 13.

“DFW is a major hub for immigrants and refugees from all over the world,” said Snoep, a native of the Netherlands. “Churches have a sea of micro-communities right here — and we’re offering to come alongside them with the tools to help them share their faith and open up the Bible in a way that all people can understand, no matter where they’re from.”

Bible ‘Awakening’

According to a recent nationwide survey, over 10 million more Americans read at least some of the Bible in the past year than the year before — a “Bible awakening” reportedly fueled by worry and fears.

BLI offers a free download of the Easy-to-Read Version (ERV) of the Bible, available in several languages, including Spanish.

Founded in 1938 by a Chicago businessman, the ministry has provided more than 920 million Bibles and study resources globally, helped start 6,000 new churches, and trained more than 550,000 people to share the gospel and teach others the Bible.

“Dallas is one of America’s most diverse and amazing cities,” Snoep said, “and our intention — in league with local churches of all ethnicities and languages — is to see people reading and studying the one book that can truly change their lives.”

Churches interested in staging their own event can contact Harold Trujillo at [email protected]

Founded in 1938, Bible League International (BLI, www.bibleleague.org) serves “under-resourced” local churches around the world, providing Bibles, Scripture resources, and training in local languages to “transform lives through God’s Word.”

(SOURCE: Bible League International)

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