By Adrian Hawkes, Special to ASSIST News Service
PARIS, FRANCE (ANS – August 3, 2015) – NLM TV is a unique 24/7 Tamil Christian network that is broadcasting the message of Christ the world and features teaching, worship, youth and children programs from Tamil churches mainly based in Paris, France.
NLM (New Living Ministries), also runs a charity called “Paalam Project,” based in Sri Lanka. Its mission is to provide relief and social services to those in need to improve the quality of life of the beneficiaries by engaging in social, charitable and educational services, including the establishment of schools for education, children’s homes and vocational training centers, and by providing preventative health education and training to members of the community.
About ten years ago, NLM TV kicked off with a one-hour daily pogrom, and even the start of this project was an amazing thing. What happened was that our Rainbow Paris churches, that were born out of the Rainbow church in London, that I was running at the time, saw the need to expand the message of the Good News that following Jesus was the way to go wanted to reach out to a greater audience than just the Tamil community in Paris France.
We knew that many Tamils, who had fled the violence of the then long-running civil war in Sri Lanka, watched a certain Paris-based TV station that often showed Tamil Films, and so Thevaseelan Sinnathurai, the leader of the work in Paris, took himself down to the station for a conversation with the owners of the channel.
The upshot of the meeting was that the Paris churches agreed to pay for one hour a week on this station to broadcast a Tamil-language Christian program, and as a result, NLM TV was born.
The station put that programming in between one of their Tamil films, and guess what, people watched us. As it was a satellite TV station, the signal went all over the place according to the satellite footprint; and this included the whole of the Middle East.
Then something extraordinary occurred; people began to phone the TV station to ask for prayer, and many also wanted to how they could follow Jesus. The callers came from Germany, France, the UK, and also from many Middle Eastern countries.
With the phone lines getting clogged up, this caused the station problems, and so they called in called Thevaseelan to the station and said. “Look, we don’t know what to do about this. We aren’t Christians and also we are here to make money, and we can’t keep answering the phone to people who want us to pray for them. What can we do?
After much discussion, the station agreed to give them a further hour of TV time each Saturday, and the best of it was that it was free. The only provision was that they would do a live program. and those on air would tell people this was the time for them to phone in and they would pray for them.
Many times, while I was visiting Paris, I have been on the program, and it was fun to pray, talk, council with people from all over the world as the hour would pass too quickly and phone call after phone call would be put through to the program. Well that was then.
NLM continued to develop this TV way of speaking to a larger audience and gradually more and more programs were developed. But then, Then the station was sold, and the new owners said that they could no longer broadcast their programs, and this happened.
This caused quite an uproar among the NLM viewers, who then began writing to the address where they could send their donations, even though they never actively asked solicited money, asking where NLM had gone?
Soon, local Tamil Christians in Paris, and others from around the world in places like Sri Lanka, Canada, Switzerland, and the UK, who had been tuning into the show, and with the help of their generous gifts, NLM TV 24/7 was born and began broadcasting by satellite. The programs are uplinked from Parish to a satellite distribution center in Israel, and then broadcast to a wide footprint.
Now Thevaseelan and I met recently in Sri Lanka and he told me, “Adrian, I want to touch my own homeland, and we are doing a deal to put the programs here in Sri Lanka on Cable. Please pray with me as I try to do this.”
He has just emailed me to tell me, “I have also managed a deal with a new satellite company.” He added that its footprint, which is about to start, will cover the whole of Asia, Africa and Australia.
Thevaseelan said that, at the moment, the signal we are showing is a “coming soon” signal. The plan is that, the start date will be at end of August, 2015,” he said.
Please pray for the unique ministry and its future, and if you would like to donate to help them broadcast the Gospel to the Tamil people around the world, just make your check out to (Adrian, please put the name they should put on the check), and the mail it to: (Please insert an address.”
For more information, please go to: http://tamilchristiantv.com/nlm-tv/.
Photo captions: 1) A Tamil viewer. 2) Adrian Hawkes with Thevaseelan Sinnathurai in Sri Lanka. 3) Adrian and his wife, Pauline.
About the writer: Adrian Hawkes is married to Pauline — Dan Wooding was best man at their wedding — and they have three children, 10 Grandchildren and two Great Grandchildren. He is still part of the Rainbow Church North London which he used to lead and he also works with Sri Lankan churches in France, Switzerland, Norway, Canada and Sri Lanka, as well as a church in Norway. He helped to form Phoenix Community Care Ltd, which looks after some 30+ unaccompanied minors, and vulnerable adults in housing in North London; alongside his wife Pauline, he established PCC Foster Care agency and recently launched London Training Consortium Ltd., which trains refugees and asylum seekers with ESOL, IT, and Literacy. He has also written various books including: “Leadership and.,” “Attracting Training: Releasing Youth,” “The Jacob Generation,” “HELLO is that you God?”, “Culture Clash,” and his first, fiction book, “ICEJACKED. He can be contacted by e-mail at: email@example.com
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