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See also the pictorial summary of 50 years of LRI ministry.
1939: The ministry was founded by Miss Joy Ridderhof in Los Angeles USA. Because of her impoverished position Joy was totally dependent on the Lord for financial provision. Thus the ministry was founded on a clear understanding of God's trustworthiness, and continues to maintain that position.
1953: Joy Ridderhof visited Australia en route for recording Gospel messages in PNG. She stayed with and enthused Stuart and Molly Mill, who with men such as Paul White, Ken Griffith and others commenced Gospel Recordings Inc Australia, situated in Sussex Street Sydney. Stuart Mill was Director. The main products were gospel messages on 78rpm gramophone records, and spring wound gramophones.
1957: Operations moved to a newly constructed factory at Eastwood. Staff expanded as young Christians saw this as an exciting field for evangelistic service. The Phonette was invented as the first hand wind, motorless record player. New Centres were spawned: GR-USA commenced a base in the UK; and Australia, with help USA, supplied the plant and machinery and staff for a centre in Bangalore India. Meanwhile recording technicians were trained and sent to many countries.
With the emergence of the cassette recorder and their use in Missions, research commenced into producing a reliable hand wind, batteryless cassette player. Development progressed through a number of models until the Messenger became the recognised work horse for missionaries and national Christians working in remote locations.
1974: As an adjunct to the spoken message on cassette, the first of our Bible teaching picture series were printed.
1977: Dick McLellan was appointed General Director of the mission.
1978: The Good News picture series - an overview of the Bible's redemptive message was released and, with a recorded commentary, became an effective tool for non-literate people groups around the world.
1985: The Look, Listen & Live Bible teaching series of flipcharts were published, providing greater in depth teaching on many Bible themes.
1987: The Mission moved to an industrial complex at Castle Hill. This enabled us to develop a purpose built complex for both player production and studio facilities, plus office, research and development, packing and dispatch areas. With some of the proceeds from the sale of the Eastwood property, residential properties were purchased for use by the mission's members.
1988: A name change for the organisation from Gospel Recordings to Language Recordings Inc took place.
1993: At various junctures in their history GR-US and LRI Australia and other Centres attempted to form a fellowship of the expanding family of organisations having common roots and vision. Finally the Gobal Recordings Network came into being as an umbrella fellowship of the 20 GR/LRI Centres around the world.
1996: GRN expanded to 22 Centres forming the GRN Council, and there are 7 developing bases. The GRN Executive Committee made up of the Directors of four Centres was appointed.
1997: The Living Christ loose leaf series of Bible pictures were published with a focus on reaching the minds of Muslim peoples of the world.
2000: Graydon Colville was appointed National Director of the mission.
2002: The 20,000th Messenger player was produced.
2003: 50th Anniversary in Australia. Technology developments continue, with recording starting to be done straight to portable computers.
2004: The name has changeds again from Language Recordings to Global Recordings Network, to reflect the wider global fellowship of centres and bases in more than 30 countries.