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Partnership Extends Gospel Radio to Some of Farthest Corners of World's Most Populous Muslim Nation

FEBC makes Heartline programs available to network of local stations in remote parts of Indonesia, broadening audience for the good news among unreached communities
Contact: Ty Mays,
LA MIRADA, Calif., Feb. 14, 2019 /Christian Newswire/ -- A new partnership is extending FEBC's (Far East Broadcasting Company, www.febc.org) reach with the gospel into some of the most remote corners of Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim nation.

Photo: FEBC is reaching more potential Indonesian listeners through a partnership with scores of local radio stations broadcasting the gospel to remote communities.

By making its programming available to 105 local Christian radio stations with limited resources, the global missionary broadcaster has been able to share the good news with more of the isolated people groups scattered across the country's 17,000 islands. Just 10 percent of Indonesia's 255 million population is Christian, with almost 90 percent Muslim.

Though most of the independent and church-run radio stations adding FEBC's "Heartline" broadcasts are local with limited programming - and in some cases using antennae attached to treetops—they are extremely important because they are the only way of reaching people in their rural communities with the good news. While Heartline programs are streamed online, many people do not have reliable or affordable internet access to listen to them.

"This is a tremendous opportunity to help proclaim Jesus' love to people who have no other way of hearing about him," said Ed Cannon, FEBC USA's CEO and President. "We are delighted to be able to come alongside and strengthen and multiply the efforts of others who share our desire to make sure everyone gets to hear the good news."

Operating in Indonesia under the name of YASKI since 1969, FEBC has seven stations of its own that broadcast Heartline programs in Indonesian and six other ethnic languages: Buginese, Javanese, Makassarese, Minangnese, Sasaknese and Sundanese. The new partnership is broadcasting nearly 160 hours of programming a week in 20 provinces, and reaching some 170,000 additional listeners.

Though Indonesia officially allows freedom of religion, overt Christian content may be broadcast only between the hours of 7 p.m. and 1.30 a.m. The rest of the time, YASKI airs general-interest and pre-evangelistic programming that aims to create an audience for its gospel-based content.

YASKI receives scores of letters, emails and other responses from listeners each month. The correspondents share what they feel after listening to a program, what they thought and learned, ask questions, and even request prayer.

Among those who have contacted YASKI is a man raised a Muslim, but who "for a while didn't believe in any religion." Then he started listening to the Christian broadcasts and called the station's counseling center to ask for prayer.

"[A staff member] also accompanied our family to a local church," he said. "Now we are attending church regularly and my family serves God. Life is better with God because he is good."

"This sort of feedback is indicative of the hunger there is out there for spiritual truth in so many parts of Indonesia," said Cannon. "That is why we believe this expansion is so important. Some of the stations we are partnering with may serve only small communities, but the people there have no other way of hearing the gospel."

YASKI needs to raise approximately $380,000 to fund its expansion initiative, and hopes to add 20 more local stations in due course, furthering its reach even more.

Donations to the effort can be made at www.febc.org/indonesia.

FEBC (Far East Broadcasting Company, www.febc.org) was founded in 1945 to share the gospel in China. Today, more than 900 staff and 1,800 volunteers produce around 850 hours of programming each day, broadcasting across Asia, Russia, Ukraine, the Middle East and Africa. Programs in 124 languages air from 149 stations.