With this series of blog posts I want to share some of the computer programs and ministry helps I have found useful. My ministry centers around three things, children and teens, music and translation. While your ministry may not center on the same three things, some of the programs and helps I have found useful may be useful to you.
The program I would like to talk about today is Corel Draw. Many times missionaries do not have access to the types of materials they need. Sunday school materials, games, bulletins, Christian artwork, book markers, illustrations, booklets, pamphlets, and other such items are either too expensive or not found in the language of your people. I know that when my parents first started out on the mission field in Portugal, there was little available in Portuguese. Thankfully more and more is available from Brazil, but even so getting into Portugal or Mozambique can be cost prohibitive.
This is where a program like Corel Draw can come into play. The initial investment can be a bit steep, usually costing from $100 to $200, but the benefits more than pay for the program. It enables you to make all of those items for the cost of your time and the ink and paper to print them. Just in the 6 years I have been on the field, I have used this program to make book markers, bulletins, booklets, games for junior church, memory verses, backgrounds for power point, and much more. It is a versatile program with a thousand and one uses. It can also save you a lot of money spent on materials or postage to get those materials.
In a first world country like Portugal or the United States, getting items printed involves going to a local print place and telling them how many copies you need. However, in a developing country or a third world country such luxuries are not available. So if you are going to use a program like Corel Draw, you will also need a printer and maybe even an ink supply. This can seem like an enormous investment of money and time, but the rewards are worth it. Using materials you have created can bring another to salvation. After all, that is our purpose. The program and printer can be tools in the Master’s hand.
One thing I would advise if you are going to use a program such as Corel Draw. If possible, take a course on using the functions or buy a book for ‘Dummies.’ The more you know about your program the more you can use said program and the better your product will be.
What are some of the tools or programs you have found invaluable on the field? Let me know and I will include them here on this series.