"..and to the end of the earth." Acts 1:8 NIV
For those children of the 1950s and 1960s, you will enjoy reading of how your childhood companion, FM Radio, is making a most very important comeback in Africa, one that is drawing people to Christ. The absolutely amazing fact about this is that the same smartphone technology that stripped most of FM radio's market share as a news source, is now providing the platform for FM radio to reach millions in the remote parts of Africa with the Gospel in their own language, in their own cultural platform and within a certain amount of safety and privacy.
It is the FM chip available for or already in most new smart phones that is making this possible. Here in the West, there is little desire for this function, but in the remote east it is everything for some who live within the range of an FM translator station. As most everyone in Africa owns or has access to a smart phone (just like in the USA) this FM radio platform has made the world a lot smaller for even the culturally isolated ones.
From a young man with a laptop inside of a small enclosed tent on a wilderness high point of ground, to major city powerful FM broadcasters, the "local - friendly" version of the Gospel is coming to the ear buds of those wanting to hear more of what they have been hearing about this "Jesus" and of "those people" who follow Him.
This is a past and current movement that has even attracted atheists when the format is a talk radio format using a theological expert being questioned by atheists who challenge him on a great variety of biblical concepts. The little that seeps through the tribal resistance to anything "Western" peaks an interest in that area and the listener will focus on wanting to know more on that particular point. Eventual conversion rate of such atheists is 1/1000 at a minimal cost.
The other great thing about this platform is that it offers listeners a somewhat safer method of hearing the Gospel than text message or written format, the possession of which punishable by death, and that is how sentence is usually carried out.
Even China is feeling the effect of this program in Africa, as they are having to ban all students who have been brought to China from Africa from attending any "Three-Self Patriotic Church" services for fear that their Christian leaning rhetoric will pollute China's cultural and patriotic ideals. (China is heavily involved and invested in developing Africa)
Platforms like this, and that of Faithwriters, are reaching more people and cultures than we perhaps realize, nor probably ever will until our Lord returns. The one thing we can understand is that East is not West. The hardcore tribal secular do not care for anything religious that the we of the West have tried to offer, but in their own language, thoughts, cultural ways and humor, and within their love for arguments, but we do have what they need (grasp at) to turn their heads.
The number of Christians in Africa has risen dramatically over the past ten years, through the efforts of many religious ministries and their many methods. At present, the Center for the Study for Global Christianity at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary estimates that there are 631 million Christians in Africa, making it the largest Christian population in the world, with women in remote villages being typical of the newest converts. (See the advantage of FM Radio Ministries?)