ARUNACHAL PRADESH THE LAND OF THE RISING SUN!

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Beginning
UESI ministry in Arunachal Pradesh started way back in the early 1980s, when students who were part of EU in other states returned home after graduation and felt the need of student ministry in their home state. Dr. Bamin Tada, his wife Sis. Susan Tada and Mr. B.K Chena all ex-students of Shillong and Bangalore EUs, started meeting together in Pasighat and later invited college students to join them for Bible study and prayer. Simultaneously graduates who came to know the Lord through EU in their College days felt the need & burden to pioneer in their home state. In April 1985, the Annual Conference of Baptist Council of Arunachal Pradesh was held in Sille, East Siang dist. During the conference, a few graduates who had burden to pioneer UESI ministry in Arunachal Pradesh met together with the permission of BCA on 14th April 1985 to deliberate on UESI ministry, which gave birth to EGF-Arunachal! They formed the first Executive Committee of EGF-AR, with A.K. Lama as the President, Dr.(L). Kayong Tayeng as Secretary, Ms. Momik Boje as Treasurer, Dr. Asangla Ao as editor and Dr. R. R. Jugli as Prayer Secretary.

Dr.(L) Kayong Tayeng and Dr. Reto Doye were instrumental in initiating ministry in Jawaharlal Nehru College (JNC), Pasighat to its functional stage. JN College Pasighat EU is the first EU of Arunachal Pradesh which formally started functioning on 28th April 1985.

Our founding graduates & students were very active members of their own communities and churches. Even the UESI ministry was born in a churches’ council meeting. They wished to maintain good relations with the local churches and we have followed it till date. The churches not only contribute very generously but they participate very actively in our ministry as well. The ministry in Arunachal Pradesh came into existence during the “persecution years”. Now, God has enabled the movement to reach out many students and graduates of the state.

Growth
1970s and 80s, Arunachal had witnessed a severe persecution to Christians. Despite persecution, our graduates & students took the risk to carry forward the ministry. After a few years of its inception, in 1986 the first EFG-AR Conference was organized, and ever since, this conference has been an annual event. Along with this conference, student camps and trainings were also conducted annually along with other NE programs.

Slowly but surely the Lord has blessed the faithfulness and answered prayers of our pioneers and the ministry in the state started to grow in leaps and bounds. UESI-North East appointed Mr. Alfred Valui, in 1999 as the first staff worker of Arunachal Pradesh. His posting has seen a substantial growth in the ministry both quantitatively and qualitatively during his labour in the land. Many centres were reached, and many EUs, EGFs pioneered. One of his mentee, Anando S. Deori a native young graduate joined as the first state coordinator in 2002. Subsequently God raised many coordinators and student leaders from within the state. By 2006 there were four coordinators in different parts of the state.

By God’s grace, the state has been able to produce two national staff Ms. Koj Riniyo, based in Kolkata and Mr. Anando S. Deori & family for Goa. The ownership and active involvement of students, graduates and staff in rich fellowship is a hallmark of the ministry in Arunachal.

In November 2006, at the Annual Conference of EGF-Arunachal held at Tezu, Dr. David Jayakumar, the then General Secretary of UESI suggested to think of a road map for decentralization based on his observation of the activities and growth of the ministry in state. Consequently, during the 22nd EGF-AR Annual Conference held in Nov. 2008 at Changlang the house unanimously decided to go ahead with the process of decentralization. Accordingly, the state EGF on 15th May 2009 wrote to the UESI-North East and UESI to initiate the process of decentralization of the ministry in Arunachal Pradesh. Initially the desire was to have it done in 2011 when EGF-AR were celebrating ‘Silver Jubilee’. However, during the Golden Jubilee Celebration of UESI-NE in Shillong, the leaders of NE and National discussed and recommended the decentralization of Arunachal Pradesh in 2012. Considering the need and situation, a consultation for decentralization was conducted on the 14th & 15th of April 2012 at UESI-NE Retreat Centre, Naharlagun. After much deliberations on the constitution and future plan the house unanimously decided to go for decentralization. The state was declared decentralized in July 2012, at the UESI AGM Bhopal, MP.

The State has been divided into five regions with regional committees viz. 1. Lohit, 2. Tirap, 3. Siang, 4. Subansiri and 5. Kameng. This division has helped in quantifying and raising quality of the ministry into the grass roots in individual student and graduate level.

Anando S Deori,
State Secretary,
Arunachal Pradesh

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