50 years ago, the average cost of a new house was $14,950. A gallon of gas cost 34 cents; the average annual income was $7,850; and the Dow Jones Industrial Average was 943.
In 1968, the first Big Mac went on sale for 49 cents; Apollo 8, the first crewed Saturn V launched and orbited the moon; Dr. Christian Barnard performed the first successful heart transplant; anti-Vietnam War and Civil Rights demonstrations were in full force; “Laugh-In” was the top TV show; “Hey Jude” (The Beatles) was the most popular song; Jane Fonda and Joe Namath were our fashion icons (think fur coats and bell bottom pants); Martin Luther King, Jr. and Senator Robert Kennedy were assassinated; Richard Nixon defeated Hubert Humphrey in the Presidential Election; and…LOGOI was incorporated as a “charitable religious” organization.
working with the Evangelical Literature for Latin America Association, was traveling extensively throughout Latin America. At every stop, he was dismayed at the poor teaching from local pastors. “It wasn’t their lack of ability or talent,” Les said, “it was their lack of Bible and theological training.” He estimated that over 80% of the pastors in Latin America were self-taught, having never received any formal Bible training or studies. He also knew economic limitations prevented most from ever attending a seminary or Bible school.
Seeing the great need for on-the-job Bible training, Les tried to get other evangelical organizations to create programs to help. But nothing seemed to happen. It was then Les said he felt God saying, “But I didn’t call them for this work, I called you.”
So it was that in 1968, LOGOI (which means “words” in Greek) was born. It began as a Christian publishing house emphasizing books and materials designed to help pastors and lay leaders with Biblical tools.
One day in 1977, a long letter from an Association of Pastors arrived from southern Chile. They asked Les and LOGOI to come to Chile and help 125 pastors learn how to study and know God’s Word so that they could then teach their congregations. Les recalled having no idea how or why they thought to contact LOGOI. But God used this group of pastors in Chile to launch LOGOI’s official on-the-job Bible school and training ministry called FLET.
God has used the ministry of LOGOI to impact the lives and teaching of tens of thousands of men and women scattered across the Spanish world. Over 100,000 have studied various FLET Bible school courses, many thousands have attended LOGOI Pastor conferences, and hundreds of churches and ministries have been planted by LOGOI alumni. LOGOI’s ministry now extends across 32 countries — including the good old USA.
In all these years, we have yet to start any fashion trends or influence the Dow Jones Average. But in God’s grace, we have invested heavily in helping our Latin brothers and sisters joyfully proclaim the Good News.
One interesting note seems a bit like “history in reverse.” Back in 1968 and then in the 70’s and 80’s, it cost LOGOI from $150 to $250 to train and equip one national pastor over the course of a year. Today, it costs LOGOI only $5 per month — only $60 a year! Back when LOGOI was hosting pastor conferences throughout the year, we were thrilled to know between 4,000 and 6,000 pastors were able to attend over the year. Today, every four days, over 6,000 pastors and lay leaders “attend” LOGOI’s online Bible resource center.
I’ve said this before but I can’t help but think of it again. One year, when it seemed LOGOI would be out of business for lack of funding — but then just enough funding arrived — I asked Dad why it seemed God still wanted LOGOI around? Then with tears welling in his eyes he said, “Because Christ loves His bride.”
What a joy to consider that for 50 years God has enabled LOGOI to help prepare His Bride. What a privilege. And don’t forget, your investments in God’s work will pay eternal dividends. Thank you for investing in LOGOI. And thank the Lord for 50 years of ministry!