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Information for those seriously considering serving with Global Recordings Network USA.
OUR VISION AND OUR VALUES
Global Recordings Network is an interdenominational missionary organization founded in 1939 by Joy Ridderhof. It is incorporated as a not-for-profit organization in the state of California and is governed by a Board of Directors in accordance with the Articles of Incorporation.
In vital partnership with our Lord Jesus Christ and His Church, Gospel Recordings seeks to effectively communicate the gospel of Jesus Christ through audio recordings to all peoples in their own languages. The priority is to provide evangelism and discipleship messages for nonreaders and unreached people groups that have no other means of hearing the good news in their own languages. The expectation is to see these least-reached people won to Christ and become disciples and worshipers of Him.
In order to make recordings in foreign languages, Gospel Recordings trains and sends out missionary recordists. Equipped with high-quality recording equipment and laptop computers, and with faith in God to lead each step of the way, recordists go from tribe to tribe using bilingual language helpers as the means of getting a targeted local dialect on tape. The aim is to record at least two hours of evangelism and discipleship messages in each language relating Biblical truths in the context of the culture. Cassettes are then made in readiness for distribution among the people. While we undertake some distribution outreaches ourselves, we primarily aim to mobilize and partner with others so that an ever-increasing number of Christian workers are using our materials to take the gospel further.
Fundamental to the ministry is the commitment to cover all aspects of the work in prayer. We daily enter into the spiritual warfare on behalf of the unreached peoples, systematically praying for peoples to be saved as a result of the recordings and to grow in Christ, and that new workers be raised up and funds be released so that the ministry can progress.
The task ahead
Since the work began, we have made recordings in over 6000 languages and dialects. Although it is hard to pinpoint exactly how many languages and dialects still require recordings to be made, estimates indicate there could be as many as 5,000. In addition to this, many languages that were recorded years ago now need updating. One thing is clear: the task is a formidable one, and those who join us in making Christ known through this means, need to be wholehearted in their commitment to Him and this ministry.
Our role in the great commission
Gospel Recordings is part of the great workforce of Christians whom God is using to build His Church. We believe that the combined assignment of the worldwide Church is to preach the gospel to every creature, to make disciples of all nations and to see these disciples established in reproducing churches, and to plant new churches in areas where currently there are none. Gospel Recordings' specific calling is to provide the good news through audio recordings making this evangelism and teaching tool available to Christian workers to help multiply their church planting efforts. While we don't specifically plant churches, we are part of the process and, in many instances, are the first Christian resource on the scene in an unevangelized environment.
Joy Ridderhof founded the work of Gospel Recordings in 1939. Joy was a single missionary in Honduras in the 1930's but was forced to return to the U.S. due to ill health. Her missionary heart was still with the mountain people she had left behind. These people had responded to the gospel and were delighted to hear God's Word.
As Joy prayed for them, an idea came to her. She remembered how phonograph records had played in the villages, blaring out songs in English and Spanish. If only she could make a record with a gospel message and Christian songs in Spanish, then it could stay with the people to repeat over and over the words she could no longer say to them in person.
In late 1938 the first record was produced and sent to missionaries who would take it into the mountain areas. The response was amazing and soon requests were coming from many Spanish-speaking areas for copies of that record. In 1941 Joy received a request for a Navajo recording from missionaries to the Navajo Indians. Joy's decision to record this second language was a major landmark in the history of Gospel Recordings, opening the way to a global outreach that would eventually touch the ends of the earth.
Gospel Recordings today is committed to fulfill the vision that God gave to Joy Ridderhof. We are committed by God's grace to put the good news in everyone's language. No language group is too small or remote.
Statement of faith
We hold to and teach the Scriptural doctrines of the Christian faith, including: belief in the whole Bible as the inspired Word of God; the Trinity; the Deity of Christ; His virgin birth; His death for the sins of man, and His bodily resurrection; the lost condition of all men without Christ Who is the only Way of personal redemption; the necessity of the new birth; the bodily return of the Lord Jesus Christ to this earth; the urgency of the commandment to the Church to preach the Gospel to every person.
Our international identity
Gospel Recordings has developed into a global work with centers and bases in over 30 countries. Global Recordings Network (GRN) is the name of our international mission. An international coordinator and five regional coordinators provide leadership and facilitation for the global ministry to zealously pursue the fulfillment of capturing the good news in everyone's language.
Our highest calling is CLOSE COMMUNION with the Lord Jesus. This has a higher priority than our service which should flow out of our worship and love for Him.
We believe that it is God's intent for every people to hear the news of salvation in their HEART LANGUAGE. To this end we give ourselves fully to making the Message available. We desire that the daily mechanics of the work not cause us to lose sight of the harvest-that of seeing Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, and Tribal Groups introduced to the Savior.
We desire to live and operate on the basis of FAITH, trusting God to meet our needs in answer to prayer. In taking on projects, our fundamental question is not "Do we have the funds? ...or the time? ...or the people?..." but rather "Is it the will of God?"
We desire that a SONG OF PRAISE continually arise from our ministry to the Throne of God, and that even in the midst of trials, difficulties, setbacks or shortages, nothing would silence that song.
We are committed to demonstrating a giving and GENEROUS SPIRIT in making our materials available. No one should be hindered from hearing of Christ because of a financial barrier.
A top priority is ascertaining the MIND OF THE LORD because God always works after the counsel of His will. The more His will is sought, the more surely He will do His work through us. We don't want to waste our time on that which will result in wood, hay and stubble.
Prayer is more than preparation for the battle-it is the battle! As such, we are committed to entering into the spiritual warfare through daily INTERCESSION, fervently praying for the lost, and systematically covering every part of the work.
We want to be a people characterized by a REJOICING and praising spirit. Not only is this scriptural, but rejoicing is in essence a statement that we trust God-and praise is a crucial weapon in spiritual warfare.
We want to have a WHATEVER IT TAKES attitude to our work, recognizing that many of the unrecorded languages are probably the most difficult to reach. This attitude to our work should be characterized by commitment, tenacity, endurance, vision, flexibility, faith and drive in order to accomplish the purpose for which our ministry exists.
All that we do is first and foremost for the Lord. Whether we are recording languages, typing letters or duplicating cassettes, it is for Him that we are doing it. All we do should be done WHOLEHEARTEDLY and gladly for Him.
Members are born-again Christians called to the ministry of Gospel Recordings and voluntarily conform to the requirements of the Mission. They should be in full agreement with the Statement of Faith, Purpose and Policies of the Mission. Members should be at least eighteen years of age and able to fulfill the work requirements of the membership level being sought.
The work of Gospel Recordings should be recognized as a call from God, and not just another job. Each worker needs to be prepared to give above and beyond what ordinarily would be expected, and as strength permits. Outside activities should never interfere with scheduled duties.
Gospel Recordings is open to workers of any race or nationality as full Staff Members. We will not however consider for membership those who exhibit behavior forbidden in scripture. This includes sexual immorality, adultery, substance abuse or alcohol addiction, homosexuality, uncontrolled anger, practice of magical arts, pornography, or idolatry. Gospel Recordings is committed to providing an environment free from discrimination. In keeping with this commitment, we maintain a strict policy prohibiting any kind of harassment or abusive behavior.
Missionary members are self-supporting missionaries called of God to Gospel Recordings. Their intent is to make it their life work and thus come with an open ended commitment to the Mission for as long as the Lord enables them to be a part of it. They must be able to work full time and understand that the ministry of Gospel Recordings takes precedence over other Christian ministry or outside work commitments.
It is preferred that both husband and wife apply together for missionary membership. In the event of both applying for membership, acceptance will be on the condition that both applications are approved.
When both partners are missionary members, one partner of a couple with dependent children may give time as necessary to properly look after the family. They are encouraged however to be involved in the work of the Mission as much as time and health permits.
Where only one member of a married couple applies for missionary membership, the non-applying spouse must be positively committed to the purpose of the Mission and be in full agreement with the decision of their spouse to work with Gospel Recordings.
Associate members have a commitment to the Mission and a regular work assignment but do not fulfill all the requirements for missionary membership. This category is especially suitable for retired people, those who are financially self-sufficient and other people who wish to make a significant ongoing contribution to the Mission. Associate members may be involved full or part time.
Short-term members fulfill the same requirements as missionary members but only commit themselves to work for a period of one to three years.
The Mission accepts people as interns for a period of three months to a year to work on a special assignment. This includes students who are assigned by their schools as interns.
Seconded missionary members
Gospel Recordings will accept missionary members seconded from other GRN centers and other evangelical missions. Secondment agreements will be negotiated with the center or mission involved on an individual basis and will include financial arrangements for the seconded member. All other rights and privileges of membership will be determined by the secondment agreement.
Gospel Recordings welcomes the services of volunteers. They need to complete a volunteer application form and be interviewed prior to commencement. Some volunteers are involved on an on-call basis rather than on a regular schedule.
Representatives (or mobilizers) present the vision for the work to churches and individuals in their area with the goal of seeing God raise up many intercessors, donors and new workers. They may be missionary members, associate members, short-term members or volunteers.
Spiritual characteristics of members
Members shall not promote any doctrine or teaching that is not in accord with the Statement of Faith, nor cause dissension or strife among fellow workers through arguments or discussions regarding views or interpretations considered to be divisive or controversial.
Members are expected to exhibit standards of moral behavior in accordance with the Scriptures, avoiding any appearance of evil. They should seek to be above reproach, whether at work or in their personal life, conducting themselves in a manner worthy of the Lord Jesus Christ. They should be exhibiting the fruit of the Spirit and a close walk with the Lord.
APPLICATION AND PREPARATION
Applicants for membership come as led by the Lord. Each person desiring to be considered for membership will complete a preliminary questionnaire. If satisfactory, an application form and medical questionnaire will then be completed. References will be required from the applicant's pastor, Bible school principal or instructor, employer, coworkers and friends. The applicant shall also visit the Temecula to get better acquainted with the work and staff and also be interviewed by the Executive Director before being approved.
GRN USA supports and values the sanctity of marriage. As with any applicant, those who have been divorced will be considered on a case-by-case basis, with careful review of each individual situation. The Board of Directors will have the final determination as to acceptance.
If the application is accepted, the applicant will spend an appropriate amount of time developing a ministry support team. For career missionaries, GRN USA will provide guidelines about the amount of financial support that is considered adequate, with state minimum wage guidelines as the base amount. The home office will assist with writing prayer letters and sharing about the ministry with churches and home groups. It is strongly recommended that the applicant's home church be part of the process and be willing to commission and support their new missionaries.
Support levels for missionary members
A personalized budget needs to be worked out for each missionary member, however the required minimum monthly level for single people is $1600, for couples it is $2400 and for families with two children it is $3000. This will need to be in hand or pledged before beginning service with GRN. GRN will provide basic instruction and guidelines for developing a strong support team.
Applicants will be considered as provisional members during the first six months of service. Monthly evaluations will be conducted during the provisional phase for the purposes of mutual feedback and accountability. Following the successful completion of this period, the Mission leadership will recommend their permanent status to the Board of Directors. Service may be terminated at any time during the provisional period by either the member or by the Executive Director.
All new members shall be provided with a description of their ministry responsibilities after discussion of their abilities and the needs of the Mission with the leadership. This will take place after undertaking a one-month orientation program.
New members will be assigned a coach to help them through the time of adjustment. This shall include showing them where the stores and banks are located, recommending churches, instructing them in living as a supported faith missionary, being a prayer partner, answering questions and generally being of help.
While Bible School training is not mandatory, it is preferred for all missionary members. However, it is a requirement for recordists. Both full-time and short-term workers go through a basic orientation program during their first month.
Those wishing to serve overseas will need to complete their provisional period six months of service, undertake appropriate training such as successfully completing the recordist training course, and be at an adequate support level before beginning their overseas assignment.
Members are responsible for their own housing and utilities. The Mission will endeavor to help facilitate some economical housing as it is able.
Staff members have the joyful privilege of trusting God for the supply of their daily needs and monthly support. The Mission sets recommended minimum levels of support that each member is expected to receive. Recognizing that God usually supplies through His people, each member should work diligently towards building and maintaining a strong ministry partnership team to provide for his or her monthly support. A member's home church should be an integral part of this partnership team. Members are encouraged to keep their churches, friends and acquaintances regularly informed about the ministry of GRN USA and their role in it. Prayer and dependence on God are the essential elements in the obtaining of finances. Members are free to share information for prayer with their prayer partners as the Lord leads, but the main emphasis must always be on looking to God for His supply. Any sharing should be done in a gracious manner without imposing obligation or pressure and without a spirit of covetousness or solicitation.
Building a team of committed prayer partners
Prior to starting work, it is important for time to be spent developing a team of prayer partners who will commit to praying for you at least once a week. This will help provide a strong spiritual covering for you.
We believe it is important for those wanting to serve with GRN USA to be sent out with the support and blessing of their local church or fellowship. Commissioning for missionary service with GRN USA by your home, sending church is carried out prior to starting with us.
SOME OF THE TASKS WE DO
The work is a team project and includes a wide variety of assignments, some less glamorous than others, but all equally important! Abilities, health and a sense of God's calling are seriously considered when assignments are made. Each worker must be willing to put the priorities of the Mission ahead of one's own personal ambitions. The following information shows the various aspects of work involved:
Executive Director's office: Provides spiritual leadership, vision and direction for the work, identifies goals and sets priorities.
Finance office: Handles the receipting, banking and accounts payable relating to ministry expenses, as well as staff support checks. Manages the insurance, taxes and financial reports.
Personnel: Responds to inquiries for staff applications.
Reception: Coordinates telephone communications, greets visitors, and handles secretarial assignments.
Field administration: Oversees the field activities that relate to Gospel Recordings' priorities and goals; screens and trains potential field staff; aims to meet the personal and spiritual needs of workers; gives all-around direction and encouragement.
Field recordists: Go to unevangelized areas to record gospel messages in foreign languages and dialects.
Field base operators: Operates field bases, duplicate cassettes and contact missionaries about using Gospel Recordings' materials.
Language tracking: Catalogs newly received recordings from the field. Assists field personnel in identifying where groups of unreached peoples are, and provides vital language data.
Distribution: Seeks to find effective outlets for the distribution of cassettes and players; contacts missionaries and shares ways they and Gospel Recordings can work together.
Mobilizers: Shares the vision for the ministry with churches and individuals across the U.S., giving Christians opportunities to be a part of this ministry through prayer, service and giving.
Promotion: Produces newsletters and prayer letters to keep our mailing list informed of how God is using the work; creates brochures, ads, displays and other materials to inform; and designs our web pages.
Order department: Processes orders for ministry materials. Corresponds with missionaries on matters relating to their orders as well as the use of Gospel Recordings' players.
Cassette production: Prepares cassette masters for home and field use. Continually improves technical quality of original tapes as needed. Duplicates cassettes on high-speed machines.
Shipping: Packs and ships the materials being sent.
Computer services: Provides programming services and maintains computers and systems.
Electronics: Maintains and repairs audio equipment, office machines and tape players; researches and develops new types of hand wind cassette players.
Housing/Hospitality: Coordinates housing for staff and guests.
For more information, please contact the GRN-USA Personnel Dept.