Serving Location: Asia & The 10/40 Window
Sending Organization: JARON Ministries International
Darin and Linda Alvord are now engaged in three phases of ministry to Asia through shortwave radio: Transmitter Engineering, Project Management and Program Content Production.
When Darin ended his secular career as a radio communications system engineer, he began to look for a way to use his life experience in a volunteer role. Having always been intrigued by the concept of long-range broadcasting used by operators such as Voice of America, he began to look into the operation of the big transmitting station that is located just west of Delano, CA. To his disappointment, Darin learned that the station that once broadcasted into most of south America was no longer on the air. It had been shut down in 2009 and the transmitters scrapped.
However, Linda continued to search for similar interests in the realm of Christian broadcasting. She suggested looking into Trans World Radio. Almost immediately upon opening the TWR.org website and looking under the “Serve” menu, a small window popped up stating, “Urgent Need: Transmitter Engineer – Guam”. That was a very clear message that God was directing the search.
After the application process and approval as volunteer missionaries, Darin and Linda were selected to perform a three-month mission to Guam to fill in for the Chief Engineer who was going on furlough for six months; another engineer would complete the second three-month time after the Alvords returned home. So, October 1, 2019, Linda and Darin arrived in Guam and met the staff at KTWR, the big shortwave broadcasting station there.
Over the course of those three months, the Alvords gained a deep appreciation for the massive work being done by KTWR. Darin was introduced to a new broadcast technology known as DRM (Digital Radio Mondiale), or the worldwide standard for digital radio broadcasting. The station transmitted programs in 22 languages into all of Asia from the island through the week; making use of shortwave’s unique nighttime attributes to send signals thousand of miles.
By the end of three months, it was hard to anticipate going home, but the Alvords returned to California. Unexpectedly it was learned that the missionary engineer that was to come in behind Darin to complete the furlough absence had contracted a serious illness and could not go to Guam. Darin and Linda agreed that Darin would return to Guam to fill the void, with Linda remaining in California.
During the second short-term mission in Guam, Darin became convinced that God had a plan for the regular broadcast of discipleship programs using the DRM technology, both to further the use of DRM and to make the recorded work of Dr James Cecy into regular broadcasts. The exegetical exposition of complete books of the Bible by Dr Cecy and his associate pastors make excellent teaching for Christians in Asia that need true Bible teaching, especially those in countries hostile to the Gospel. In addition, a study of the health of the 10-tower transmitting antenna structure had just been performed, and the results indicated that a major rebuild of the towers was needed. The COVID-19 pandemic and government shutdown and restrictions lead to Darin having to cut his time 8 days short to be certain that he could leave Guam, as the governor was threatening to close the airport. For the same reason, the Chief Engineer was being told to go back to Guam immediately.
Darin was contacted by Rob Carter of JARON Ministries International about joining JARON to gain the support, guidance and assistance JARON provides to missionaries. The Alvords completed an application and were accepted as JARON missionaries.
Upon arriving home, Darin discussed the tower situation with Trans World Radio’s Chief Technical Officer and subsequently agreed to become the Project Manager for a restoration project that became known as “Strong Tower for Asia”. He is currently performing those duties for TWR in addition to two other roles.
Darin and Linda formed Global Radio Ministries for the purpose of creating half-hour programs from Dr Cecy’s series on James, Titus, John and other series he has done. These programs, now titled, “Air JARON”, are intended for broadcast in DRM into all of Asia. James is an 80-broadcastcast series, Titus is 68 and John will be over 340 broadcasts. Recording Dr Cecy’s books as audio books for broadcast is also being considered.
These broadcasts are necessarily in English and not yet translated into the languages of Asia. It will be a larger undertaking to perform the translation, contextualization, recording, editing and final production required to produce program content in the most-used Asian languages. This is a matter for prayer and direction from God. Further, Darin is intending to travel to Cary, North Carolina to meet with the global program content department of Trans World Radio with a new goal in mind – to have TWR broadcast Air JARON in English-speaking areas of the world, such as Europe, north Africa and southern Africa – using conventional AM shortwave stations.
Darin has returned to Guam twice more in 2021, recently together with Linda. Darin continues to perform work as transmitter engineer in handling emergency repairs to the three big transmitters and to develop upgrades to sections of the 25-year-old stations. The Strong Tower for Asia project is now completely funded and orders for materials have been placed. Tower repair contractors have been sought and one has been to Guam to perform his assessment and deliver a proposal for the project. At least one more contractor’s bid is needed. The worldwide pandemic has proven to be a real hinderance to the project and to travel and supply chains. Again, these are matters for prayer and God’s intervention.
At his time, the Alvords are volunteers, serving Trans World Radio as Project Manager for Strong Tower for Asia, servicing Global Radio Ministries as program content producers, and also in the original role as Transmitter Engineer. These are currently the three phases of the Alvords’ ministry.
Prayers & Praise
Your regular prayers for the Alvords’ ministries are requested. Prayers of our brothers and sisters in Christ have propelled our service. Financial support is always needed and requested. So much is already being done with multiple broadcasts going out weekly, work on the tower restoration going on daily, and work to keep the old transmitters performing until they can be replaced with new ones. You can be an important part of supporting these things and, ultimately, adding to the Kingdom of Jesus Christ.
We are currently digitizing 130 sermons on the book of John for broadcast in DRM, Digital Radio Mondiale. This series of messages on the book of John is by Dr. James M. Cecy of Campus Bible Church in Fresno, CA. Dr. Cecy has served as Senior Pastor of CBC for over 25 years and is the author of many books. The John series is an in-depth, verse-by-verse exegetical study of the Gospel according to John.
The goal of this project is to use the original recordings to
produce transcripts in Japanese, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean and Indonesian languages for recording and broadcast into areas of Asia where each of these languages is the heart language of the people.
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