CHANG BAPTIST LASHONG THANGYEN (CBLT)
Mission Centre : Tuensang
Post Box – 26
Tuensang : 798612
Executive Secretary : A. Jonathan Chang
The coming of the Gospel to Chang land has many stories to tell of God’s love. Prior to the coming of the Gospel in Yaongyemti village, God’s spirit was actively working to redeem the Chang people through Dr.E.W.Clark and Rev.Godhula Rufus Brown. In 1892, Rev.Godhula along with his wife Lucy reached Noksen village. On the seventh day of every week, as entrusted by the villagers Mr.Hongsayemchong, a Noksen native carried Rev.Godhula on his back and took him through the village with the slogan “Esoba yimsü amangangne, Esoba yimsü amangangne” meaning “Believe in the Kingdom of God, Believe in the Kingdom of God.” At that time in Noksen village, Mr.Hongsayemchong and Mr.Sangposang were converted. However, they could not be baptized as headhunting still prevailed during that period and for them to embrace Christianity was a strange thing. Rev.Godhula and his wife left Noksen village after three months for the villagers stayed stubborn to the Gospel. Mrs.Longkongnungla escorted them till the Dikhu river saying to the couple, Blessed are those people whom you will minister. In response, the couple raised their hands towards the village and blessed with a prayer.
When the British administration was in control of Nagaland, the World War I (1914-1918) broke out and Mr.Longkongyanchu, the Head Dobashi of Yaongyemti was entrusted to organize volunteers from every Naga village for the Naga Labour Corps (NLC). A Naga team under his leadership was sent to war. Entrusted with such responsibility by the British administration, he was known by many including God’s servant Dr,E.W.Clark who befriended him. There were moments and many instances of God’s calling but since the village elders were adamant about receiving a foreign faith, he also decided not to accept it. While there were no christians in Yaongyemti village, there were believers in neighbouring Ao villages like Chakba and Salulamang. Rev.Supongwati of Ao tribe often visited the two villages to preach the Gospel. He was given a horse to travel for the Gospel Mission by the American Mission. During his visits, he made Yaongyemti village as his base and stayed at Dobashi Longkongyanchu’s house. He would then leave his horse there to visit the neighbouring villages on foot. Rev.Supongwati visited Yaongyemti village thrice during 1932 to 1934 and after each of his visits, he always leave after having a secret time of prayer for the villagers. Even after the First Gospel seed was sown in Yaongyemti village, the village still spent many years headhunting with neighbouring villages. The British in order to control the headhunting practices in the land awarded a red blanket to Dobashi Longkongyanchu, which was a symbol of authority. Having been given the title as Chieftian of the Naga Hills, it was his responsibilty to monitor the law and order of the British administration.
Loyemchu, the first convert amongst the Chang tribe, heard about the new faith that prevailed in Ao land. The new faith proclaimed that believing in Christ could heal a person from all sicknesses. Loyemchu had acute knee pain which made him unable to go to his field. His wife Longkongsonla also suffered from heart disease. It was in fact God’s plan that in the year 1934, Onglingaku from Yaongyemti village who was serving as Head Dobashi in Mokokchung planned to build a granary with CGI sheet roofing. He sent Yongkongmangyang, a Government carpenter of Akhoia village for the purpose. Yongkongmangyang knew the Gospel and learning on the plight of Loyemchu and his wife, shared the Gospel with them and they accepted believing that they would be healed from the ailment. When the news of Loyemchu’s conversion reached Onglingaku, he went down to the village and forced him to keep the old ways saying that if he embraced Christianity, then there would be no place to stay for visitors who comes from other villages. This was because village guests would stay at Longkongyanchu and Loyemchu’s house. Therefore, all the traditional beliefs and practices once discarded were taken back. Onglingaku then brought both Loyemchu and his wife Longkongsonla to Mokokchung and they were taken to Shillong, Assam, and other places for treatment but their ailment could not be cured as it was a sign of God’s calling.
Later, even after his conversion Loyemchu was not baptized. Nungshiyangba along with Chubayongdang and Aosadang from Ao tribe took him and his wife to attend the Ao Bible class at Impur and there the couple was baptized by Kijungluba Ao, the pioneer Evangelist on 5th September 1936. The day of their baptism marks the sowing of the seed of Christianity in Chang community. In 1939 Rev.I.Anderson, an American Missionary handed them the Ao New Testament Bible, Ao Hymnal and a calendar from Impur Mission to be used while conducting Church related services. For the first time in 1939, a Christmas feast was hosted by Loyemchu’s family. God’s presence was apparent and the people were so filled with joy as they experienced miracles and felt the Holy Spirit within them. They gathered in the Church regularly to praise God and the Lord strengthened them to grow more and more.
The first Pastorate family from the Chang community was K.Takümsiba and his wife who served at Yaongyemti Church from 1938 to 1939 and continued the Ministry in different villages. Imlong Chang (OBE) and his wife were baptized by Kijungluba Ao on 29th April 1940. Kijungluba Ao remarked that it was with the sincere help of Imlong Chang that the Gospel spread in Chang area. The Gospel penetrated villages like Litem, Noksen, Longtang, Haak, Tuensang village and Tuensang town. Imlong Chang, the pioneer of the Chang tribe was highly revered by his community. During that time, though Imlong Chang could not go to his people in person, the message sent by him was accepted by the people and some were even converted through his words. The first Evangelist in Chang land was J.Onenlepden Ao, who served in the Chang region from 1955 to 1959. He was ordained at Yaongyemti village during a Bible class on 6th February 1955. In 1960, he left to serve the Yimchunger tribe and later returned to Tuensang to serve as the Field Director from 1965 to 1968. After serving the Chang people for 18 years, because of his frail health he left the Chang area under the guidance of spiritual leaders of the Chang tribe like Aosangba, Takam, and Bin. The Churches functioned under ABAM till 1948. During the first conference of the Chang Baptist Churches held at Yaongyemti village from 25th to 27th November in 1949, the Chang Baptist Lashong Thangyen (CBLT) was formed.
The first Executive Secretary of the CBLT was Rev.A.Aosangba from Noksen village, who was ordained on 18th April 1982. He served the Association for 20 years right after his graduation from Eastern Theological College Jorhat in 1968. During his tenure, revival broke out and the Gospel of Christ began to spread in embracing Christianity by the community. Small churches with few believers were organized and established into a strong foundation for the present Churches and the Association. Termed as the most challenging task, his team had to travel from village to village and from door to door in order to bring the Churches under one umbrella. He passed away in the year 1988 while he was still in God’s service as Executive Secretary. The Association was then led by R.Teka Ao who continued the task left by Rev.A.Aosangba Chang. He was succeeded by Rev.S.Takam Chang, who was ordained on 6th September 1992. He completed the compilation of the translation work of both the Old and New Testament into Chang language. Rev.L.Bin is credited to have initiated the bible translation and literature works of the Chang people. When Rev.Dr.Chingmak Kejong took up the service of Executive Secretary in 2006, many changes took place in the system of Church administration, Church centralization, and social development. Under his leadership, the association and churches were strengthened witnessing spiritual, social, and economic development as well as empowerment of the women folk. With all these new initiatives, L.Ongmang succeeded him as Executive Secretary in 2010. The challenges to lead the people towards Christ may not be easy yet the spirit is not belittled.
All through these years, despite many challenges, the association has worked with resilience and set higher goals to achieve the Lord’s Mission as a team. Presently, the association ministry is centralized representing one Church in Christ. The ministry is focused to these activities- Leadership, Sports, True Love Waits, Family altar, Couples and Widows seminar, Livelihood programs, creation of Self Help Groups, human development programs, Adult literacy, Sunday School, Christian literature and School education, Auditing and Financial management trainings, Programs for creating Mission consciousness. The association has two mission stations, one in West Bengal-Chengmari and the other in Assam-Umrangso. There, the activities is manned by our two missionaries along with some Evangelists and staff. Marking the year of Platinum Jubilee in Yaongyemti Baptist Church in the year 2011, the Chang people have committed for Foreign Mission. Thus far, the Chang Baptist Lashong Thangyen endeavours to be a faithful and dependable association for the Lord. It serves as an expression and the embodiment on the contribution of the Churches towards the spiritual development for building God’s Kingdom on earth.
Kuki Baptist Association (KBA):
Mission Centre Khaibung,
P.O. Medziphema – 797106,
Executive Secretary: Mr. Lamkhotong Singson (Photo/Phone no: optional)
The works of Christianity among the Kuki began in 1899. However, the spread of Christianity was slow. Mr. Ngulhao Thomsong, the first convert was baptized in 1908 and the first Church was planted in 1912 at Sirhima village which was followed by the second Church at Chalkot village in 1918. Nevertheless both the Churches were planted by Mr. Ngulhao Thomsong, Rev. Niesier Angami and Mr. Krunieze Angami under the supervision of Rev. Rivenburg. Later on, slowly the churches were established at Inbung, Mandie, Tesangki, Khaibung, Paona, Malvom and so on.
In 1926 under the Kohima Mission Field, the Zeliang – Kuki Association were formed and in 1936 the strength of Christianty had grown to two hundred.
The first Pastor among the Kuki was Mr. Ngulpu and among the Zeliang was Rev. Keniese and above that the association has their local evangelist, whereas Mr. Sojang was the first evangelist among the Kuki and Mr. Houbung who was the first evangelist among the Zeliang. The association workers were paid by the Kohima Mission Field. In 1953, due to linguistic problem, the Kuki formed their own Association and Mr. K. Thanggeowas appointed as the first Field Director but due to some circumstances he was replaced by Mr. Kelhosekho Angami who was set by the Kohima Mission Field. Later Mr. Kelhosekho Angami was succeeded by Rev. T. Haulai, the first graduate in Theology from the Kuki tribe.
Today, the Kuki Baptist Association (KBA) has its head office at Khaibung village under Medziphema Sub-Division. The Association has 15 Churches and 3 Fellowship with 3450 baptized members. The association also has a branch centre at Ahthibung town under Peren District. The branch centre covers six villages and two towns (Ahthibung and Jalukie) where, Rev. Janglam Singson is the Pastor in charge and Mr. Palal Misao the Development Secretary is sited as the office in charge of Athibung area. The association has five retired aordained ministers, namely late Rev. T. Haulai, Rev. M. Kipgen, Rev. Lamthang Singson, Rev. Seikholen Lenthang and Rev. Janglam Singson. At the present the association also has one ordained minister Rev. H. Minlen Singson and four licsenced ministers, pastor Lamkhotong (Tongpu) Singson, pastor David Vaiphei, pastor Lamlun Singson and Thensem Singson.
The KBC aims towards extending the Kingdom of God by demonstrative participation through faith, work and life of the Kuki Baptist Churches in Nagaland. The KBA strives to unite all the Kuki Baptist Christians and Church workers for spiritual development all over Nagaland. With this objective, the KBC has seven Departments namely: General, Mission, Finance, Women, Youth, Development, Christian Education and Property Departments.
The Women Department of KBA started a vocational institute that offers weaving and tailoring for drop-out students, widows and orphans in 2005. They are trained and given basic Bible knowledge. Trainees and and production unit employees are sent to visit different Churches and also to people of other faiths as witnesses.
The Youth Department which was formed in 2006 is engaged in Praise and Worship and also campaigns for True Love Waits. As a result many youths from different Churches have pledged to lead a clean and spiritual life.
Christian Education Department, Christian literature such as publishing of the Bible, hymnal, song book, and Sunday school texts for adult class and Union Sunday school texts are prepared by the Department. Annual the department organizes children’s camp, singing competition, Bible recitation and various kinds of competitions are conducted in different locations.
The Mission Department has a Mission Field was opened in 2006 at Bokhaghat, Assam, and an Evangelist was placed there. The mission department has sponsored a missionary in Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh and a Pastor in Himachal Pradesh in partnership with Friends Missionary Prayer Band (FMPB). Apart from that the Baptist local churches has sponsored missionaries within and outside Nagaland. The Association works in partnership with Friends Missionary Prayer Band (FMPB), Indian Evangelical Mission (IEM) and Nagaland Missions Movement (NMM). The mission department has sent out two missionaries and 13 missionaries who were sponsored by various churches through the IEM, FMPB, OM and NMM partnership.
The Development Mission of the KBA has set up a wing called Northeast Rural Development Agency (NERDA) with its head office at Ahthibung town under Peren District. The objective is to uplift the poor and marginalised sections of society through trainings, seminars, retreats and awareness campaign on HIV/AIDS. In collaboration with Nagaland Development Outreach (NDO), 9 SHG’s were formed, especially for the benefit of widows who are daily wagers. As a self reliance project, the Association has also taken up activities like plantation of trees and bamboo with the help of Nagaland Bamboo Development Agency (NBDA), which is headed by the Development Secretary of KBA at Palal Misao. The Association has also constructed a building of 8 rooms in Dimapur as an income generating project.
The association also has others annual activities including Children Festival, Esther Night fasting and prayer by the Women Department, observation of the Pastors day, Nehemiah Whole Prayer programmes for the Youth, GB’s and Governmental officers’ camp and KBA staff exposure programmes and retreat. With the present Executive Secretary Pastor Lamkhotong (Tongpu) Singson and the ordination of the former Executive Secretary Rev. H. Minlen Singon, the association endeavour is about to celebrate its centenary and also going to hold a conference for KBA sponsored missionaries. In specific God has truly done a tremendous wwork among the Kuki tribe; raising them up to the level where they can facilitate God’s love to those yet unreached. This is indeed a sign of God faithfulness.
The Mission Department has sent out two Missionaries, and thirteen Missionaries are sponsored by various Churches through the IEM, FMPB, OM and NMM partnership. Other annual activities of the Association include Children Festival, Esther Night fasting and prayer by Women Department, observation of First Pastor’s day, Nehemiah fasting programme for the youth, GB’s and Government officers’ camp and KBA staff exposure programmes and retreat. With the ordination of the present Executive Secretary, Minlien Singson, the Association endeavours to celebrate its centenary and also hold a conference for KBA sponsored Missionaries. God has truly done a tremendous work among the Kuki tribe; raising them up to the level where they can facilitate God’s love to those yet unreached. This is indeed a sign of His
A BRIEF HISTORY & WORKINGS OF THE LOTHA BAPTIST EKHÜMKHO SANRHYUTSÜ (LBES).
Rev. Nyanchumo Lotha,
Executive Secretary, LBES.
Phone No. 9436078451(M)
Christianity & Christian Population:
As per the record, the first acceptance of Christianity from among the Lotha, Naga tribe can be traced back to the year 1884 by Late Mhomo Tüngoe of Wokha village through Robi of Assam but was baptized only in the year 1902. Late Nkhao of Yikhüm village and Late Shanrio of Tsüngiki village who were both students of Impur Mission School were recorded as the baptized Christians of the tribe. They were baptized by Rev. F. A. Hagard on October 2, 1898. Late Chijamo Ovüng was recorded as the first Evangelist, Late Etssisao of Okotso as the first Pastor and Late Rev. Ibonsao Shitri, the first ordained Minister.
Dr. & Mrs. William Ellsworth Witter (1885-1888) who were the first officially assigned Missionaries to the Lotha, Naga area reached Wokha on April 9, 1885, and opened an informal School on August 2 of the same year. They were followed by Rev. & Mrs. R. P. Longwell (1920-26). During his tenure Rev. Longwell attempted to buy a plot of land (Christian Centre) at Wokha but failed due to interference from the then Sub Divisional Officer of the British Mokokchung. Therefore, he bought a plot of land with a building measuring 100 x 45 for a sum of Rs. 16,600 near Furkating Railway Station and opened a school in 1922. He recruited 42 Lotha, Naga students and taught them till 1926. Later in 1928, the dream of the Missionaries to own a Christian Centre in Lotha area was realized by Dr. J. R. Bailly. Under his active initiation, the present LBES Mission Centre Vankhosüng was purchased.
The first church was established at Okotso in the year 1904 with 6 (six) members. After 19 years of establishment of the first church, there were already 12 established churches in Lotha, Naga area. Therefore, an Association was formed in 1923 with the 12 established churches with Late Rajamo Kikon of Mekukla and Late Yichungo Ngully of Okotso as the first Chairman and Secretary of the Association respectively. It had been recorded that till the formation of a separate Association in the year 1923, the Lotha Baptist Churches were in association with ABAM.
Thus from a humble beginning, the Association had grown to 137 recognized churches and Fellowships with 35 Licensed and 75 Ordained Ministers. Of the 75 ordained Ministers 14 had already expired. The Association has a total baptized membership of about 66,987 as per the census 2016. The Christian population of the district accounts for about 95 per cent out of which the Baptist population accounts for about 85 per cent. The Association has 10 Departments with 36 employees.
LBES run Projects:
Witter Theological College:
The main objective of the Lotha Baptist Churches Association being to reach the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the unreached. Therefore, a Bible School named Vankhosüng Bible School was established in 1946 in fulfillment of the dreams of the Missionaries and the pioneers of the Association, to train Pastors, Missionaries and Evangelists to spread the Good Gospel. In 1991 the Bible School was up-graded and renamed as the Witter Bible Institute. Later in 1999 the Institute was up-graded to a college and named after the first Missionary as ‘Witter Bible College’ offering a 4 year B. Th. Course. In December 2010 the college was again renamed as the “Witter Theological College” with its Motto “Training Today, Leaders Tomorrow”. The college is duly recognized by the Government of Nagaland Vide No. EDS/THE/1-1/94(Vol – 111), permanently recognized by the Nagaland Baptist Church Council and is now permanently affiliated to the Senate of Serampore College/University.
Undergoing Development of the College:
A new campus was identified and development of the college is in full swing. It is located on the hillock of Vankhosung at an altitude of 1,434.48 meters above sea level with an area of 3.788 hectares. A modern and standard two-storied Administrative block of the college consisting of 19 chambers, Library Hall and with standard lavatories, women hostel, two staff quarters, a standard kitchen & dining hall, a standard playground, adequate water storage facility including Rain Water Harvesting Project (Israel Technology) have been completed. Construction of Men’s Hostel and Chapel Hall are underway, fully sponsored by Kohima Lotha Baptist Church and Wokha Village Baptist Church respectively. Both the projects have been started and they are expected to be completed by the year end.
Targeted Development of the College:
The following are the targeted development of the college in the very near future:
- Construction of Security Fencing is already approved by the LBES delegates and will be taken up on priority basis.
- Construction of Quarters for Faculty and Staff (phase-wise).
- Construction of a separate Library Building.
Mission & Evangelism:
As envisioned by the pioneer Missionaries and founders of Christianity, the main objective of LBES right from its inception is to evangelize the people of other faiths and beliefs. Therefore, realizing this objective the LBES have been involved in various Evangelical Missions with a full-fledged Secretary of Mission & Evangelism of which mention may be made of the 10.40 window of the great Himalayan region, Myanmar, Bangladesh, etc. In order to realize this objective, the LBES in the first place, launched an Outreach Missions in collaboration with NKBA, called ‘the NKBA Mission’ in the year 1978. A full time Missionary and an Educational Missionaries were stationed at Manja to carry out the Mission. With the effort of the Missionaries, the churches under Nihang Karbi-Anglong Baptist Association (NKBA) multiplied three-fold. LBES also worked with the South Bank Boro Baptist Churches Association (SBBBCA), Assam Nepali Baptist Churches Association (ANBCA), and LBES continue to support the Nagaland-Assam Border Mission. Four Schools at Manja, Hawaipur, Langhen and N. C. Hills were established and several individuals were imparted Leadership Trainings, fully sponsored by the LBES.
Since the LBES-NKBA Mission was about to be phased out in the year 2009, the LBES in further collaboration with NKBA launched the ‘Sonitpur-Arunachal Border Mission’ in the year 2008 which is targeted to be the ‘sparking point’ to penetrate the Good Gospel to Arunachal Pradesh. A full time Missionary was stationed at Selaikhati Town which is about 18 Kilometers away from Arunachal border. A Missionary Cottage was constructed at the cost of Rs. 7,00,000 (approx) and the Cottage was named ‘Yimkha Village Baptist Church Golden Jubilee Building’, constructed in Memory of Late Chuchumo Ezung by his children and was dedicated by Rev. Dr. E. Nrio Ezung, Executive Secretary, LBES on November 14, 2010.
LBES also encourage the Churches and able individuals to launch Outreach Missions to spread the Good Gospel. Accordingly, the LBES has to our credit, 15 full-fledged Outreach projects with 15 Missionaries and about 100 co-workers working with them. In addition to this the LBES has a well established Home Mission fund which is utilized to support the weaker churches under the association.
After working for 10 years in collaboration with NKBA, the LBES Sonitpur Mission was phased-out on June 15, 2016. At the time of phasing-out, the LBES Sonitpur Mission left a legacy of 14 Churches and Fellowships and about 3,000 believers.
Nagaland-Assam Border Mission:
After phasing-out the Sonitpur Mission, LBES launched the Nagaland-Assam Border Mission under the theme ‘Vision 2025’. The Mission was officially launched by Rev. Nyanchumo Lotha, Executive Secretary on July 7, 2016. The main objective of the Mission is Church-planting and evangelizing the people of other faith and belief. Under Vision 2025, the LBES has a target of planting at least 100 Churches with 100 Pastors and Evangelists and with an expected converts of 5,000 believers within the next 10 years. A full-fledged Missionary had been appointed and posted at Nagaland-Assam border area to oversee the Mission work.
For the purpose of establishing a Mission Field, Mekirang and Lio Longchum villages donated 16 hectares of land at Mekirang village. A Detailed Project Report had been drawn up and development of the Mission Field is in full swing. Construction of a Missionary cottage is underway fully sponsored by Chukitong Town Baptist Church quarter and water supply to the mission field are already underway.
Rubber plantation was undertaken in the Mission Field in the year 2015. Altogether 1,800 rubber plants have been planted so far.
Self Reliance Projects:
LBES also owned the following Self-reliance projects:
- A 3 storied RCC Building at Kher Mahal Dimapur;
- A Self Reliance Farm and Plantation at Liphanyan village;
- Rubber Plantation by LBES Youth Department at Yikhüm village;
- A Self Reliance Farm at Tssori Old.
(Rev. NYANCHUMO LOTHA)
Executive Secretary, LBES.
Nagaland Police Baptist Churches Association (NPBCA)
P.O. Box- 4
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Phone: 03862-240242
Executive Secretary: Rev. Dr. Hukashe Zhimomi
The Nagaland Police Baptist Churches Association (NPBCA) is a unique Association where Police personnel come together to worship God in one accord. Its headquarters is situated at Chumukedima Village. Guided by the motto, “Unity, Faith, Witness,” the Association aims to nurture the spiritual and moral life of police personnel and their family members, helping them establish faith in God and to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. The Association further aims to guide its members to be faithful in their given task as soldiers and as Government servants and to equip them with leadership skills, enabling them to become more effective workers.
With the aim of strengthening the spiritual life of believers and reaching out to the non-believers, various activities like Annual Evangelistic camps, Awareness Programs, Revival Meetings, Bible Study, Fasting and Prayer, Seminars, Leadership Trainings, Sunday school teachers and VBS Directors’ training, HIV/ AIDS and Alcoholism awareness trainings, Counselling and Behavioural Camps etc., for the police personnel are conducted from time to time.
The Christian Education Department focuses on children’s spiritual and moral growth and development organizing various activities that are children centred and life changing in nature. Every 52 Sundays are precious as children attend Sunday schools and are taught when they are young. Holiday Bible Schools (HBS) are initiated to capture young minds for the Lord during holiday season in a creative and interesting manner extending over weeks. Youth Department has been taking upon itself the arduous task of reaching out to the youth through the program “True Love Waits”. It is a campaign that promotes sexual abstinence outside of marriage particularly for adolescents and young people. “Family Altar”, “Bible Study” and “Prayer Partners” are the three key focus of the “Touch Family” program being initiated and implemented by the Women Department across Churches and Fellowships. NPBCA has been involved in coordinated Mission work by having a Common Mission Field in the districts of Ilam and Japha in the neighbouring country of Nepal.
Under the NPBCA, each unit both Battalion (Nagaland Armed Police and Indian Reserve Battalion) and District Executive Force (DEF) has one Church led by theologically trained Pastors. Under Police Stations and Companies, Fellowships are led by the Police personnel Chaplains. Nagaland Police personnel of all rank and files as long as they are in active Service are eligible to be members in the Police Churches, irrespective of denominations. All unit Churches are affiliated to the NPBCA as member bodies and all Fellowships are under their respective unit churches.
The Executive Secretary is the overall head of the Association and its affairs. The Association has various departments such as Women, Youth, Mission, Christian Education, and Finance Department etc, headed by their respective Secretaries. Thus NPBCA serves the Police communities within and outside Nagaland wherever Nagaland Police personnel are deployed on duty.
POCHURY BAPTIST CHURCH COUNCIL
Mission Centre Yisisotha, P.O. Box – 1, Meluri – 797114, Nagaland
Executive Secretary: Rev. Rümatho Nyusou
The objective of this article is to provide a broad spectrum of Pochury Baptist Church Council (PBCC) history by drawing general outlines beginning from the time of its inception till date. Initially there was no clearly defined designation and delegation of leadership responsibility among the pioneers. The administrative hierarchies of C.E. Preacher and Field Director or Executive Secretary were apparently of the same status while Traveling Pastor, Evangelist and C.E. Promoter occupied a relatively lower position and were subordinate to the former. However, in the absence of C.E. Preacher or Field Director and Executive Secretary, Traveling Pastor, Promoter and Evangelist assumed similar responsibility. The apex body of the loosely organized churches then was known by the name C.E. Union until it was replaced by the terms “Association” and finally “Council.” To avoid confusion with the previous acronyms of the Council, the Pochury Baptist Church Council is being used consistently throughout this article.
PIONEER EVANGELISTS BEFORE 1958
A number of evangelists and preachers had come to Pochury area. Some of them came on their own while others through their agencies. It is practically impossible to mention all their names here. Listed below are only a few names of those more prominent ones who evangelized the Pochury people during the formative period of their Council. Among those who introduced Christianity to the Pochury we may categorize them into two different groups: 1) those that came occasionally and went back after a few days of preaching tour, and 2) those that came and took residence among the people for years. They all merit our appreciation and admiration.
Lashupa, originally Meluri, was the son of Luotsütho. He migrated to Kohima very early in his boyhood in search of work. He was adopted by Zepulhou, Head Dobashi of Lhisema khel from Kohima village and naturally became a citizen of Kohima. He studied up to class V in Mission School, Kohima. His date of birth has not been recorded but according to Leshimo Nyusou, Lashupa was about 10 years senior to him. That means he was born around 1910. He became a Christian from Kohima village. Somewhere between 1932 and 1933 he got a government job as a vaccinator. The jurisdiction of his service covered the present Phek and Kiphere districts. It was during his regular official tour across these areas that he had preached the Gospel to Meluri people. According to the Golden Jubilee record of Meluri Village Baptist Church, Lashupa brought the Gospel of Jesus Christ to Meluri in 1936. However, there is a strong likelihood of an earlier date given the fact that he began his assignment as early as 1932/33. His marriage to Kewepfülü, the daughter of Keduzü, was arranged by his foster father. Keduzü was the younger brother of Methathi, Head Dobashi of Losami village. The alliance was made possible because of their acquaintance with each other through their job affinity. He worked in the same department till the eruption of World War II in 1944. The political climate of the British government in India was slowly and alarmingly heating up. Thus the volatile situation compelled him to give up his service and move with his family to Losami. Although he had become a citizen of Losami, he was not wholehearted accepted in the village because of his faith. Along with a couple of other Christian families, who were also ostracized by the villagers, he lived on the outskirt of the village. In September 1956, as there was no educated person among the Pochury, Leshimo Nyusou, the first and founding President of Pochury Tribal Council, appointed him as the first Pochury Angh (governor) of Japfü state under the federal government of NNC. He came with his family to Meluri in 1956 and finally shifted to Matikhrü in 1960 to make his permanent residence there. He spent his last days at Matikhrü and passed away in April 1960, five months before the carnage of Matikhrü in bloodbath by the Indian armies. Although Lashupa became a citizen of Kohima and later of Losami, he was a Pochury at heart all through his life. He always sported the traditional haircut typical of Meluri people. Among many other achievements and contribution to the Pochury people the soft-spoken, gentle, and humble Lashupa is fondly and most importantly remembered as the first missionary to the Pochury.
Sülühü & J.E. Tanquist – 1937
J.E. Tanquist, American Baptist missionary of Kohima field, came to Meluri with Sülühü of Chozuba in 1937. What they did on their visit to Meluri is not known. No account of conversion was heard of either. Leshimo was studying at Kohima Mission School when Tanquist and his companion Sülühü visited Meluri. Tanquist arrived at Kohima on January 16, 1913 and left on May 9, 1947. He initiated the establishment of a Bible School in April 1946 and the translation of the New Testament into Angami. Obviously he visited Meluri in one of his regular preaching tours. Dobashi Nyushiji Nyusou was their interpreter and guide during the trip. It is said that while Tanquist was taken on excursion around the village he noticed a man named Mote basking coolly in the sun outside his house. Referring to his nude body, Tanquist comically remarked in Angami, “Nyopape chükejükemhie,” meaning “Just like made of clay.” Generally nobody wore any clothing in those days except adult women who used a tiny band of cloth around their lower body. Perhaps their happy-go-lucky trait of casual nudity had earned them the nickname “Naked Rengmas” in Hutton’s monograph on The Rengma Nagas. Tanquist was the first and the last of the American Baptist missionaries who visited Pochury area. Concerning Sülühü’s evangelistic work in Pochury area, it is ambiguous when and where he came. It is, however, probable that he had visited Meluri on a few occasions. Born in 1878 and converted in 1895, Sülühü had the distinction of been a true pioneer among the Chakhesang and their neighboring tribes. His notable contributions to the Chakhesang can be seen in religious, educational, social and administrative fields. He took his last breathe on March 3, 1958.
Vitoulieü Iralu -1939
Vitoulieü Iralu, daughter of Krusietso Dolie and Lhuyietsüü of Khonoma, was born in 1900. She was married to Dr. Sevilie Iralu in 1919. The story about her association with the Pochury is traced back to the year 1939 when she traveled from Phek to Meluri carrying her seventh child Kekhrieseü Vihienuo (Seno) on her back. Dr. Sevilie was posted at Phek as a medical doctor for a total period of thirteen years. Between 1939 and 1940 it is reported that Vitoulieü visited Meluri a couple of times and shared the Gospel. It took a woman of unusual strength and nerve to walk on foot with a toddler over the hilly terrain and across impenetrable forest densely inhabited by wild beasts. No mention is made of her companion or personal attendant during her journey in any record. It is assumed that she had accompanied her husband while he was carrying out his official duty. Vitoulieü was the first woman who brought the Christian Gospel to the Pochury people. Though she received no formal education, with sheer sincerity and dedication, she tutored herself the skill of reading and writing. During thirty-five years of service as a government servant in places like Wokha, Tening (Henima), Phek, Mokokchung, Dr. Sevilie and Vitoulieü played the dual roles of a social worker and a missionary with distinction. The legacy of their selfless service is being cherished by people in all those places where they had set their feet. Having mothered thirteen high profile children, she had proved herself as a superlative mother and an ideal homemaker. She left for her eternal home on September 11, 2006 at the ripe old age of 106.
Thsirü Tsühah (Sare) – 1940
Thsirü Tsühah of Chizami, popularly known among the Pochury people as Sare, was born in 1870. His father was Zayilhi. He was converted to Christ in 1930 through the ministry of Sülühu and Lhütswüve. By profession he was a Road Inspector (Mehorrier) in PWD and a Dak-runner. In 1940 Sare paid his first visit to a few Pochury villages. Between 1940 and 1946 presumably he visited Pochury area a number of times. His evangelistic itinerary covered villages such as Meluri, Akhegwo, Weziho, Hutsü, Phor, Shatüza, Zhipu, and Phokhungry. The episode of his last trip to Pochury area in 1946 was distinctively traumatic. On February 19, 1946 around ten Chizami church youths reached Meluri. A few days before they arrived Sare had already passed through Meluri and was off to Hutsü. The following were some of those youths: Mehuchümvü Mero, Lhikherü Wezah, Enyürülo Chirhah, Enyükhwezü Thopi, Wekhazü Akami, Meseweu Chirhah, Kelhikhase Rhakho, Kewetsou. The villagers ridiculed and interrogated them whether they had come to Meluri to engage in licentious act because there was no opportunity in their own village. This happened a day before the contentious “Feast of Merit” (Azhie) was to be offered by Lesimo for his wife who was still following traditional religion. The youths were lodged in Leshimo’s house while Sare was away at Hutsü. The feast was organized due to the growing pressure mounting on his wife by the people for not giving the “feast of merit” in her honor. Leshimo sought the advice of Sare in one of his earlier visits to Meluri whether he should yield to his wife’s request and perform the ritual. It may be noted that the confidence of Leshimo on Sare’s advice might be likened to the apostolic authority in relation to the new converts of the first century. Considering the complexity of the situation, Sare advised him to fulfill his wife’s wish with the condition that she too embraced Jesus Christ as her Savior after the feast. Accordingly on February 21, Leshimo took Sare’s counsel and began his preparation for the big event. He had bought a buffalo, variety of meats and fish. The feast was scheduled to take place the following day. As a prelude to the feast, Leshimo was at Zhiekuri ward scouting for a piglet to eat on the eve of the feast. In the evening around 4 – 5 pm after Chizami youths had left Meluri for Kuotesü all of a sudden a mysterious fire erupted from Parütho’s house. Almost immediately it burst into an unstoppable inferno of flame and razed the whole village into ashes. So fierce was the bonfire that it was observed prominently even from Kuotesü village. The feast scheduled to be conducted on February 22 was never celebrated. The following day Sare returned from Hutsü and found the village completely reduced to heaps of debris. Unable to hold a night in that situation, he passed through Meluri in the cover of the night. Of all the forerunners who came to Pochury area Sare was the evangelist whose desire for the lost souls burnt the brightest. The frequency of his tour and the number of villages he covered proves this beyond any doubt.
Tongkhosei Thomsong – 1941
Tongkhosei Thomsong, son of Kaithang and Nemohal, belonged to a Thadou Naga tribe. The probable year of his birth is believed to be 1902. Tongkhosei was orphaned with his brother and sister at a very tender age. He passed class II (two) from a Private Lower Primary School, Sirhima. His education from Class III to Class IV at the Mission School, Kohima was taken care of by Ngulhao Thomsong, his paternal cousin. Tongkhosei joined Christian High English School, Jorhat in class VII but failed to complete his study due to ill health. He returned home and spent the next few years of his life doing the work of an evangelist among his own people of the Thadou community and a few other communities in Manipur. The direction of his journey was about to take a new turn in 1940 when he met Ngulkhapao. This time it was towards the Pochury area in Nagaland. Ngulkhapao Singson, Dobashi of D.C. Office, Kohima, persuaded him to go to Kanjang. Through the invitation of Ngulkhapao, Tongkhsei came to Kanjang village on January 18, 1941. In spite of the stiff resistance and opposition from the villagers, he slowly succeeded in wining the confidence of the people through the establishment of school for the education of their children. Gradually it paved the way for the eventual establishment of the church in 1942. Besides Kanjang he had also traveled to its neighboring villages in Pochury area to advance the cause of the Gospel. He died on December 15, 1949, leaving behind his wife and six children. Though the span of his earthly life was comparatively brief, he lived his life till he died.
Zachiprü, son of Vebrayi, belonged to Thevopisü village. He was born in 1923 and converted in 1946. After his theological training from Kohima Bible College in 1948 he was commissioned by the Chakhesang Baptist Church Council as Traveling Pastor to Pochury area. From 1954-1956 he was in Pochury area, helping several churches, particularly Phor, Kanjang and Lephory churches. His first station was at Phor and from there he moved to Kanjang the following year. He had traveled extensively in Pochury area and also to a few Sangtam villages. He baptized quite a few new converts and solemnized a number of marriages. On account of the prevailing state of affairs in relation to Naga political problem, he was constrained to pull out his concentration from Pochury area in 1956. However, even after his departure he continued to serve God as a Chaplain while in Jail and also as Pastor of Chesezu and Thevopisü. He returned to his eternal home on November 1, 1996.
THE FIRST POCHURY CONVERT
Historically the origin of Christianity among the Pochury Nagas commenced with the conversion of Leshimo Nyusou in the year 1938. Based on this established record, the Meluri Village Baptist church, the church to which he belongs, celebrated its Golden Jubilee in remembrance of their 50th anniversary of Christianity in the year 1988. Leshimo Nyusou, the second son of Phrutho Nyusou, was born in 1920. In the year 1935, at the age of 15, he got married. In those days, there were no schools in Pochury area. The nearest and only school was the Mission School at Kohima which was established and run by the American Baptist missionaries. People traveling to Kohima in those days had to walk through dense forest on foot for not less than two days. Resolute in his desire to receive education, he left his wife and went to Kohima in 1936. The following year he was admitted to the Mission School in class “A”.
Regular worship activities in the chapel, stories told from the Bible and Christian songs eventually motivated him to consider the new faith- Christianity. In 1938, when he was 17 years old, he declared his decision to become a Christian, rather of having become one. The record of his conversion date cannot be ascertained due to lack of proper document. Either the record was not maintained or it was preserved but destroyed by fire. The Office cum Main Quarter at Kohima Mission Compound that housed important documents was burnt down during World War II in 1944. However, according to Leshimo Nyusou, his public announcement took place on one Sunday morning worship service at the Mission Chapel together with a few other Naga friends who were also students of Mission School. As expected, the news about his conversion was strongly opposed by his villagers. He came home and found himself being rejected and alienated by his own people. However, he lost no opportunity to share his new faith whenever he came home. For instance, in 1941 he and Neisiecho were given Rs. 5/- by the Phek Basa church to do evangelistic work in Pochury area. They traveled to Meluri on June 17, and then moved on to Akhegwo on 18 and to Hutsü on 19. Festival seasons were dreaded occasions for him. During festivals strict taboos were imposed on villagers. Not only was movement within and outside the village restricted but conversations too were forbidden. No visitor was entertained in the village. On a number of such occasions Leshimo was chased out from his village.
FORMATION OF THE COUNCIL & ITS CONSTITUENT CHURCHES
In the form of consultation and discussion among the then Pochury churches, the process of organizing a Council began as early as 1952. In 1957 a unanimous decision was arrived at and the first convention of all the Pochury churches was held at Lephory in 1958. It was called Christian Endeavor Union (C.E. Union). The organization of a new association was formalized in 1958. In its year of formation, nineteen local churches had already been established in nineteen villages. These included Meluri, Kanjan, Hutsü, Phor, Shatüza, Akhegwo, Thawati, N.Thawati, Lephory, Laruri, Weshelo, Wuzu, Zhipu, Phokhungry, Matikhrü, Weziho, Rüguri, Molen, Mokie. Since then the affiliated churches had been holding regularly their annual general conference. By 1965 with the birth of the last church at Küzatü village, Christianity had reached all the villages in Pochury area. Later on, a few new villages had been established but all of them were Christian villages. Originally, Baptist was the first and only denomination in Pochury area. The church remained undivided for four decades. Except the two Catholic churches at Meluri and Lephory, all other denominations were formerly under the Baptist umbrella. The PBCC observed its Silver Jubilee in 1983 at Hutsü. Kachüsie, the first Pochury Reverend, was ordained during its Silver Jubilee celebration by Rev. P. Dozo, General Secretary of NBCC. This was one of the major landmarks in the history of PBCC. Its Golden Jubilee was celebrated in 2008 at Meluri.
Twenty-five years after the celebration of its silver jubilee, PBCC has virtually not shown any remarkable increase in the numerical growth of the church. This is because eight churches from eight villages had independently decided to leave Baptist and form other denominations. They were, by and large, the Revivalists and Pentecostals. As a result, Baptists in the following villages have entirely lost their presence to other denominations: Molen, Thawati, New Thawati, Weshelo, Moke, Wuzu, Phor, and Yisi. The introduction of new denominations was basically the outcome of external instigation on the gullible Christians to split and weaken the young tribe. Its adverse effect is obviously noticeable even in the larger social life of the Pochury people. While there is no visible change in the statistical figure of the church, nine new churches have been founded within 25 years after 1983. Establishment of new villages and migration to towns due to transfer of services in government office, educational pursued and business attractions have contributed to the growth of new churches. Of the nine churches five are within Pochury area and four are from outside. They are New Akhegwo, Reguri upper, Phokhungri town, Meluri town, New Phor, Phek town, Kohima town, Chumukedima town and Dimapur town. While the baptized roll stood at 1957 in the year 1983, according to 2007 census, the number has climbed to 4761. Even the general population has remarkably grown from 6786 in 1983 to a staggering 9286 in 2007. From a solitary single soul in 1938 to 9286 in 2007, excluding other denominations, Christianity in Pochury area has grown at an exponential rate.
RECOGNITION BY NBCC
Sixteen years after CPBC was formed by the Pochury people, on October 18, 1974, NBCC recognized Pochury as a separate association in its executive meeting held at the Angami Baptist Council of Churches (ABCC) Mission Centre, Kohima. Kachüsie was the Field Director of CPBC while Longri Ao was the General Secretary and Toniho Chishi was the President of NBCC when this resolution was adopted. Prior to 1974 frequent discussion and consultation with other associations and the NBCC leadership had been held. With the intention to bring the issue of recognition to the knowledge of other associations and win their support, the Pochury representatives also attended both NBCC and the Council of Baptist Churches in North East India (CBCNEI) meetings a number of time. The indomitable spirit of the Pochury to assert their identity as a distinct people was rewarded in 1974. Since 1974, the Council of Pochury Baptist Churches (CPBC) has been one of the constituent members of the NBCC.
Between 1958 and 1963, CPBC had no specific place for its office. The pastorates of Lathopa Pojar and Riehatho Nyuthe were used for the office of CPBC. For the first time CPBC Mission Centre became operational with its station at Kafo, Shatüza in 1964. Vizosül of Khuzama came as Field Evangelist while the Mission Center was at Shatüza. He came through the Angami Baptist Church Council but was salaried by the Pochury association. The first Bible School was established there for the training of local leaders. The school faculty was staffed by Riekhotsa and Chithosie with Vizosül as the in charge. Puhovile, wife of Vizosül, taught a subject on Angami language. It was a two-year diploma course. The school had trained approximately twenty students. Later on when Mission Center was shifted to Hutsü the Bible School also went down to the same compound. Students who were trained in the Bible School soon took up leadership responsibility in several local churches. In 1973 when Kachüsie returned after completing (Certificate in Theology) C.Th. course from Calcutta Bible College, he assumed the office of Field Director and functioned its office temporarily from Meluri town in Chithosie’s house. During that time the present St. Xavier school plot was allotted for CPBC Mission Center and demarcations were made. The same could not be taken over for occupation as the Mission Center was relocated to Shatüza in 1975 owing to difference of opinion. On April 23, 1976 Shatüza was left for good and the new Center continued to remain at Hutsü till February 1983. Due to absence of proper road connection with the Mission Center, in March 1983 it was shifted to Weziho. Presently the side has been occupied and developed by medical department. But in May of the same year it was again transferred back to Hutsü.
CPBC suffered a major setback on account of the uncertainty of its headquarter for a considerable period of time. It had squandered nearly three decades of its formative period while engaging all its time and resources in tug of war over the question of Mission Center. The Bible School at Hutsü was the first visible victim of that instability. The susceptibility of the council caused by regular exodus of its Mission Center in four stations for a little more than four decades led to the loss of time and resources. The imbroglio over the land for Mission Center was finally settled in 1992 when it was shifted to Yisisotha in Hutsü village land. The present CPBC Mission Center at Yisisotha occupies a total area of 13 acres. The property has been donated by Hutsü village without any monetary remuneration. Yisisotha is positioned on a picturesque hillock overlooking the long circuitous Tizü River. Located at a distance of 50 kms away from its ADC headquarter at Meluri and 210 kms from Kohima, the road linking India and Myanmar passes through the mission compound. This same road also connects with the famed Shilloi Lake and the upcoming international trade center at Phokhungry. The Weziho Cement factory is only about 5 kms away from this place. Shilloi Lake, locally known as Lütsam, the largest freshwater lake in Nagaland, is about 55 kms away from Yisisotha.
EXECUTIVE HEADS OF POCHURY BAPTIST CHURCHES COUNCIL
Year Name Designation
1953 : Lathopa Pojar (C.E. Preacher)
1954-1956 : Zachiprü (Traveling Pastor, sent by CBCC)
1956-59 : Lathopa Pojar (Traveling Pastor)
1958 : Riehatho Nyuthe (C.E. Preacher)
1958-59 : Yutsüchu (C.E. Promoter)
1963-66 : Riehatho Nyuthe (Traveling Pastor)
1967-70 : Vizosül of Khuzama (Evangelist & Headmaster of Bible School)
1973-75 : Riehatho Nyuthe (Evangelist)
June 15, 1973 – 1980 : T. Kachüsie (Field Director/Executive Secretary)
1980 : L.C. Puli (Executive Secretary)
1981-1986 : T. Kachüsie (Executive Secretary)
1987 : Thsüwachu S. Nyuwi (Executive Secretary)
1988-1989 : T. Kachüsie (Executive Secretary)
1990-1992 : L.C. Puli (Executive Secretary)
1993-1996 : Thsüwachu S. Nyuwi (Executive Secretary)
1997-2003 : Tivisie (Executive Secretary)
2004 – 2009 : Thsüwachu S. Nyuwi (Executive Secretary)
2010- 2014 : Tisie Katiry (Executive Secretary)
2015- : Rümatho Nyusou (Executive Secretary)
Sümi Aphuyemi Baptist Akukuhou Küqhakulu (SABAK)
Mission Centre Pughoboto,
P.O. Pughoboto: Zunheboto – 798620
Executive Secretary: Rev. Hotokhu Zhimomi
The Gospel of Jesus Christ was first brought to Nagaland by the white American Missionaries. These Missionaries were farsighted and as they laboured to spread the Gospel amongst the various Naga tribes, they also began to build leadership among the local people to whom they could impart responsibility at the event of their leaving Nagaland to continue the task of the Great Commission. The Sümi area in the Kohima region benefitted greatly from the servants of the Lord who were commissioned by the Kohima Field Baptist Church Council to evangelize the Sümi people. The early Missionaries from other tribes under KFBCC who worked among the Sümis of the Kohima Elakha include Rev. Sieliezu of Kohima village, Rev. Krunizu of Kohima village, Khiezie of Kohima village, Rev. Zhapuzhulie of Kohima village, Rev. Nisier of Khonoma village, Kekhulu of Khonoma village, Vizikho of Khonoma village, Rev. Megosieso Savino and his wife Janikhoü of Khonoma village, Rev. Kevizelie of Jakhama village, Rev. Kuolievi of Chiechama village, Rev. Sülüho of Chazouba village, Rev. Vesalhu of Chazouba village, Rev. Mungulhu of Chazouba village, Rev. Kenise Zeliang (village is not
known), Rev. Nulupu Kuki (village is not known) and Rev. Viliezu Rengma of Tseminyu village.
Through their Ministry, the first Sümi converts Ghüsüna and Ghopuna, both from Ighanumi village, were baptized in the year 1904. Following their conversion, they set out to spread the Gospel and despite facing
stiff opposition and rejection from their own people, they remained committed to their call to serve God. The community of believers began
to grow in the Sümi areas. To cater to the needs of the growing Churches, Ivulho Shohe of Ghokimi with the help of Rev. Zhapuzhulie and Rev. Dickson translated and published the first Sümi Reader, a book on the Gospel of Mark (Chapter 1-16), and a book of Hymns. Further, to strengthen the established local Churches, the second annual session of the Kohima Field Baptist Church Council was convened at Ighanumi village in the year 1912. In 1929, a Mission sub-center
was opened at Chishilimi village to oversee Church affairs and Rev. Megosieso Savino and his wife Janikhoü were deputed and stationed at
the Mission Center.
As part of the Ministerial strategy, a primary school was also established in Chishilimi Village so that education could be used as an instrument to reach the unreached people in the surrounding villages. This school eventually produced many Sümi leaders and one
among whom was the late Rev. Shihoto Swunetho who began his education in this school. Following the first conversion in the Sümi area in 1904, the evangelical work and the supervision of Sümi Churches under the Kohima administrative block were monitored by the Kohima Field Baptist Churches. As the Churches and number of believers grew, despite the establishment of a Mission sub-centre at Chishilimi
village, there was an increasing demand to bring all Sümi Churches under the Kohima as well as Mokokchung Districts under one Mission Centre. Consequently, the Sümis of Pughoboto sub division (Southern Sema) left the KFBC and joined SBAK Aizuto in the year 1947. However, after a few years of coming together the unified Mission could not fulfill the aspiration of the Churches due to various reasons, one among them being distance from the Mission Headquarters. To meet the needs of the Churches, several Branch Missions were formed which
included the Lower Sema Association (LSA), Southern Sema Association (SSA), Regional Association of outhern Sema and SBAKL (Branch). The decision was finally taken in 1982 to have SABAK as the official nomenclature of the Association. With the blessing received from the parent Association, the SBAK Aizuto, the SABAK was officially accepted as a constituent member of NBCC by Rev. P. Dozo, the then General Secretary on 18th March 1988.
SABAK MISSION SCHOOL PUGHOBOTO
Mission School Pughoboto is a co-educational institute which is under the management of SABAK Association. The area being remote and secluded from the rest of the state, children are deprived from primary education which is compulsory. Therefore, the SABAK with an aim to impart sound education, inculcate praise worthy character, create balance judgment and best physique, in the year 1992 took up the institution from few selfless pioneers who started the School in the year 1972. However, financially it is non-beneficial institution or runs on a minimum profit, since it is totally interested in educating the generation. Henceforth, the School offers free education to one student if the number of students exceeds three from the same family also it is aiming to offer free education to one student whose parents serves as pastors under SABAK.
PIONEER BAPTIST ENGLISH SCHOOL, Rumgong, Arunachal Pradesh
Pioneer Baptist English School at Rumgong, in Arunachal, established in the year 2017 is a school planted with a vision to impart a holistic education, developing the mind, body and spirit.
YIMCHUNGRÜ BAPTIST BORÜ AMUKHUNGTO (YBBA)
Mission Centre – Shamator P.O. Shamator –798612 Via – Tuensang, Nagaland
Executive Secretary: Rev. Z. Thsankiu
The gospel of Jesus Christ entered the Yimchungrü area almost seven decades after the Nagas first received the gospel in 1872. The pioneers who brought gospel of Christ to the Yimchungrü people were Sema and Ao evangelists. When gospel came first from Sema, Hopung from Ayipungrü village was the first personto be converted in 1942 (though he received water baptism later only). On 15th March 1947, Lhovixe of Tichibami village, a Sema evangelist visited Huker village and baptised two persons- Pungji and Rikiumong. Evangelist Lhovixe continued spreading the good news and the first Church was established at Huker. In the same year, another Sema evangelist Nikhuyi was officially appointed to preach the Gospel to Yimchungrü people stationed at Yangher village.
In 1950, five Ao Pastors visited Thsotokur village and held a gospel procession. During the gathering, six men responded to the preaching and accepted Christ and among those the first man to respond was Yankiuba. Though the growth of the Churches continued in these area, there was no Mission Centre for the Churches till 1955.
Rev. Imtiluen, the border missionary sent by CBCA arrived at Tuensang in 1955 to look after the Christian Mission work amongst the six border tribes of the Naga Hills and having no Mission Centre, all Church affairs were under the care of Rev. Imtiluen till 1958. By that time, the number of Churches in the area grew up to 30 with over 2000 Christian members. Having granted with a sum of Rs. 12,000/- by the CBCAM, the work towards the establishment of Mission Centre began and the first Association meeting was held from 13th to 15th November in 1959 at Kiussor village. In the same year, Rev. G. Kihoto was sent by the Sema Association as an evangelist to Yimchungrü Christian Centre at Shamator. During his time one Church and one staff quarter were constructed at the Mission Centre and he served till 1960. At the NBCC meeting held on 11th February 1960, at Dimapur, two representatives from from Yimchungrü, Lachim and K. Hopung expressed the need for a missionary, as a result, NBCC entrusted Rev. Onenlepden Ao as a first Field Supervisor in 1960. He served till 1964. Since then, the number of Churches under the YBBA increased to 95 affiliated Churches and 16 Fellowships. At present there are 14 ordained ministers and 29 licentiate Pastors.
Along with the Church ministries YBBA also endeavours by taking up certain activities to address the needs of the community. It has a development wing called Regional Rural Development Agency (RRDA). There are three Christian High Schools, located at Shamator, Pungro and Chessor. And in commemoration of the Golden Jubilee of the advent of Christianity in Yimchungrü land, a Theological College was established in the year 2000 called Kihoto Theological College, named after the first evangelist to the Association. This college is serving as a strategic institution for Missions and Church Ministry for the Indo-Myanmar tribes. YBBA also envisions in reaching the unreached brethrens in Myanmar. One missionary family is in Thailand and two are in Myanmar. Presently, office also focuses with the establishment of its Resource Centre at Kewung donated by Sangphur village, measuring 25 acres along with virgin forests and numerous waters sources. It is an ideal place planned to set up for various training programs, preserving biodiversities and promoting human resource development.
NAGAMESE BAPTIST CHURCHES ASSOCIATION
Executive Secretary: Rev. R. Meren Jamir
The Nagamese Baptist Churches Association (NBCA) was affiliated to NBCC during 74th NBCC annual Council held from 4th February, 2011 at Rotomi Baptist Church as one of the associate members and handing over the office of Executive Secretary was held on 19th April 2011 followed by installation of late Rev. Dr. Chen Rengma as Executive Secretary and Rev. R. Meren Jamir as President on 8th May 2011 in presence of the few NBCA officials and Rev. Dr. L. Anjo Keikung then NBCC General Secretary. The NBCA members consist mostly of Nagas as well as non Nagas who were converted through the outreach ministry of our Naga churches. The NBCC after much consultation and prayer accepted the association as one of the affiliated members with a view to strengthen and networking together for the greater ministry of Nagamese Churches.
Despite of being a relatively new and youngest organization, the association is growing faster by the grace of God at present NBCA has 65 local congregations with 3600 baptized members. The NBCA being committed and claimed to be missional church (mission oriented association) is trying hard to reach out the unreached with the gospel of God withing North East and beyond. Henceforth, looking at the target, the NBCA is also making humble afford to bring together all the Nagamese churches those who are ministering independently in all district in Nagaland and beyond under one administrative setting.
Mission Strategy of NBCA: The NBCA is the youngest amongst the associations and is still at the nascent stage and yet it is committed to fulfilling God’s given mission and mandate to the churches in the world. The purpose of setting up the NBCA is to take up a special and unique ministry among the marginalized groups of non-Christians who are yet to receive the Gospel of Christ. The NBCA has a vision to become a mission oriented agency by giving prominent emphasis on Soul wining activities. The NBCA is working resolutely to visit all the affiliated local churches as well as all the Nagamese speaking churches operating independently in all the district headquarters of Nagaland to build a strong network amongst all Nagamese churches. The NBCA also conducts bible study for the local churches, leadership training for the pastors and seminar for family building and revival meeting to strengthen the church members. Further, NBCA churches are not just confined within 11 district of Nagaland rather it is moving crossing major parts of Assam and other North Eastern part of state and even towards Eastern part of Myanmar. Therefore NBCA has decided to extend its administrative set up by opening four regional sub-centre such as Kohima region sub-centre, Tsurangkong and Changki valley regional sub-centre and Tizit Mon regional sub-centre.f