As the IMS struck root, flourished and filled the land, the need for support base also increased . Branches were formed in many towns and cities of our country. The IMS has presently 163 branches all over India. The Branches collect subscriptions and donations from members, conduct annual fetes and raise funds. They foster fellowships by forming prayer groups in smaller areas, find supporters who give monthly/annual contributions towards Missionary/Adivasi children support, construction projects and render prayer support.
The Chennai Branch functioning from the year 1915 is a strong support to the parent society from the very start.
After successfully contributing for the construction of various churches, schools, missionary quarters and hostels in various mission fields, as the Branch work also increased with more and more members supporting the activities of the Branch we felt the need for our own place to work in Chennai. We had to shift the rented office premises quite often, three times in period of 5 years. Therefore we have purchased a land at Kellys, a central part of Chennai. The IMS Chennai Branch office, “Mercy Springs” with workstations and Chapel had been constructed at a cost of Rs.90 lakhs and had started functioning from there from January 2009.
The Branch has 105 prayer groups with more than 3500 members who support the IMS with dedicated prayers and generous contributions. Monthly prayer meetings are held by all the prayer groups in their areas. It is planned to get an effective membership of not less than 5000 in the city and increase the number of prayer cells in the city to 200 before the Branch centenary celebration in 2015.
During the Lenten season retreats are conducted in all the seven zones, and a combined retreat is held at Sogundi, a mango garden near Chennai. The members share the Word of God and meditate upon it. Easter song services are conducted in North and South Chennai. Members sing in groups and in solo praising the Risen Christ. Members contribute enthusiastically through Lenten Hundies. During the Christmas season Carol services are conducted in North and South Chennai. Carol rounds are also conducted in each prayer group area. Members share the joy of Christmas singing to the Glory of new born King. The collections through these services are spent for the upliftment of the poor children.
From the year 2006 Chennai Branch has been organising special musical programmes like “India Sings”, “One World One voice”, “Rhythm of the Universe”, “His Ways & the Waves” etc., to bring the members together and to obtain sponsorship for our various projects. With the sponsorship amounts received various projects of IMST in the mission fields have been completed by our branch.
Projects to be completed:
Chennai Branch initiated the Church Planters Fold scheme to get Sponsors for supporting the mission work in various Districts to fulfill the centenary vision of reaching the love of Christ to all the districts in India. A sum of Rs.20,000 pm is sought from CPF(group of persons) or from individuals. For supporting a mission in a village Rs.500 pm is required.
Cost of a motor bike=Rs.40000.
We encourage the local leaders to train the believers to spread the good news and release the power of Jesus. The Kingdom of God is at hand.
This programme is also an initiative of Chennai Branch by which the Children studying in City Schools are encouraged to support poor Adivasi children northern states by conducting Variety Entertainment Programmes in four Places during August and November every year.
For the glory of God, IMS choir praises our Almighty through songs during the special occasions. The present choir is a small group capable of singing with four parts. Talented people are identified and included in the choir.
Members of the Women’s wing regularly pray for the IMS and its ministries every second Saturday forming a chain from 5 am to 9 pm. They gather in one of their houses every first Saturday of the month for prayer and meditation. They take active part in Annual IMS Sale held on October 2nd every year, setting up various stalls.
The monthly magazine of the Chennai Branch has been given a new look with many new features. It carries many interesting articles, Bible Quiz, Prayer meeting Schedule for the month and many other features concerning the activities in Chennai.
The IMS youth is actively involved in organizing prayer meetings, music programmers and special spiritual revival meetings. The youth wing comprises of four zones, the vision of the youth is to visit all the missionary fields and support them in the ministry. Leadership training is also given to the youngsters to develop future leaders for the IMS and to create a young brigade to serve the Lord in a more powerful way.