July 17, 2014

New Podcasts, Recorded in Various Languages in Los Angeles, Are Proving Popular Worldwide

, with reporting by the Southern California Conference

A number
of Seventh-day Adventist churches in the Los Angeles area have started
releasing weekly podcasts in Vietnamese, Chinese Cantonese, Russian and
Portuguese as part of a new effort to share Jesus and better health practices
with their local communities.

the free podcasts, which are on track to swell to 20 languages this year, have proven
so popular that scores of people have signed up for subscriptions around the
world and Adventist World Radio is promoting the
programming on its website.

“We are delighted
that the podcasts extend the reach of local Southern California Conference
churches to a global audience,” said Betty Cooney, project manager and
communication director for the Adventist Church’s Southern California
Conference, or SCC. “However, SCC’s primary goal is to reach the local language
communities targeted by each church.”

To accomplish this, the conference
created a website, Linguaspirita.net, to host the podcasts. Local churches
promote the website and podcasts through flyers and business cards printed in
each podcast’s respective language.

Daryl Gungadoo, the British-based
global distribution manager for Adventist World Radio, has provided two
training seminars to local churches.

<strong>RUSSIAN RECORDING:</strong> Pastor Anatoly Gurdaiala and volunteer co-host Luchia Molla producing podcasts in Russian. They also record a television program that airs twice a week on International Christian family network television. Photo credit: Betty Cooney / SCC

But some of the church’s podcast teams still
faced a learning curve when they got in front of the microphone. The L.A.
Cantonese Adventist Fellowship church, for example, found that a prepared
script didn’t work well for its presenters, so they have adopted a
conversational tone.

“We tried scripting,
but it sounded boring,” said team member Lana Lui, laughing. “So we just talk
from notes, and it is working very well.”

Participating churches’
podcast teams meet periodically on Sabbath afternoons and tape five or six
segments each.

“Before I went on a
recent European vacation I completed the editing for three programs and then
posted them while I was away,” said Cecil Ma, producer-editor of the
Cantonese podcast at the L.A. Cantonese Adventist Fellowship.

In a sign of its
popularity, the Cantonese podcast gained nearly 700 subscribers before local
promotion even began. It also airs on Adventist radio stations in Guam and
Saipan in addition to being listed on the Adventist World Radio website.

Pastor Vinh Nguyen, pastor
of the El Monte Vietnamese church, prepares a 30-minute program for
non-Christians. His programming also airs over a Vietnamese radio network,
reaching 13 Vietnamese stations in the U.S.

Other churches are
eager to start recording. “Approximately 166,000 Cambodian people live in the
greater Los Angeles area, so I am excited about podcasting to share the good
news with them,” said James Dok, assistant pastor of the Temple City church and
a native of Cambodia.

But some churches
have found it difficult to get started because of old computers that couldn’t
handle the podcast work or previous commitments to other projects.

Denillson Reis,
pastor of the L.A. Portuguese church, said he had some trouble finding a
technician capable of assisting in the recording and editing. But he said he
managed to overcome that hurdle through diligent searching and praying.

“I have someone to
help whom I recently baptized,” he said with a smile.

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