Some HOPE versions have been pulled off by a lone missionary. Others, like the Lao HOPE, involve many partners over much time. In 2016, missionaries, Tom and Gayle Silkwood, began The HOPE in Lao, the primary language of Laos. They intended to use it in their ministry and as a bridge for creating several tribal versions for smaller pockets of people within the country. But then Tom passed away suddenly. And though Gayle felt committed to their vision, God sent our partners at School to the Nations to help complete the project.
In the Spring of 2019, Christian leaders from across Laos were invited to a premiere screening at a Church. When it became apparent that local authorities intended to raid the event thereby harassing and possibly arresting attendees, the premiere was called off. But God had another plan.
Through the ministry of that Church, a homeless man had recently come to faith in Christ. He prayed that God would use him, not knowing that he would pass away within days of the previously scheduled premiere. Leaders in the Church recognized that God had provided the perfect cover for a large gathering that would not be questioned by the authorities...a funeral. The premiere was quickly rescheduled. A memorial service was held on the first floor and the premiere was held on the second floor. In the man’s death, his prayer to be used of God was answered.
The Lao HOPE did not come easy. But, when images from the movie illuminated the screen, the Laotians were filled with joy seeing their own people in a glorious presentation of God’s redemptive story.
Both The Lao HOPE movie and the 167-page, in-depth Study Guide were completed and released. These new resources for the more than 7 million Lao speakers in Laos and SE Asia are available on www.thehopeproject.com, and in the Mars Hill store for download. A Facebook page has also been set up: https://www.facebook.com/Hope4Lao/ for social media ministry. Share this with missionaries you know in that part of the world.