Some of you may be interested to read about the opportunities that we had in Taiwan, Singapore, and Australia. It was all new territory for OakTree, though we met enthusiastic users almost everywhere.
We headed first for Taiwan where our visit was organized by the family of Mary, one of our associates. They welcomed us, arranged our schedule, and introduced us to the busy city of Taipei. Some of us enjoyed the local cuisine more than others!
Thanks to the combined efforts of Mary's family and the CES Alumni Association, the seminars at China Evangelical Seminary attracted a good number of students, faculty, and pastors from the community. About 50 heard a talk on Israel Today and 40 stayed for the Accordance demonstration. Almost all were PC users but they eagerly bought Accordance to use with the emulator. Our special thanks go to David Wei who mastered the upgrade from version 3 to 6 in one day, and very ably translated both talks.
Our team of four went on to the ISBL meeting in Singapore. We had little time to explore the city but found it a fascinating and cosmopolitan, modern, western, city with traces of British culture still visible between the pervading American and all the local flavours.
Although attendance at the ISBL was less than half of what they hoped, we had an excellent response to Accordance. There were scholars and teachers from all over the Far East as well as Australia/New Zealand, and many had never even heard of us. Some local pastors also got the word and came in to see us. Most of the time we were pretty busy in the show area. On the last morning about 30 attended the two hour presentation of Accordance and then swamped us with purchases and questions. There are many follow-up possibilities all over the Far East.
In contrast to Taiwan and Singapore, Australia felt wide-open and huge! At each location we had some time to visit local sites, go shopping, and meet with local pastors. Sydney Harbour and the Melbourne riverbank are quite beautiful. In Hobart, Tasmania we felt at the end of the world, and on Mount Wellington the spectacular view made up for the bitter cold.
Except for the all-day seminar at Moore College, Sydney, attendance at the seminars was low (a combination of factors: timing was just in the winter break, other meetings conflicted, publicity did not succeed in bringing in many non-users....). However, the users who came were grateful for the training, and we were glad to get to know them and get a feel for the situation in Australia. We hope there will be worthwhile continuing contacts.
To the Ends of the Earth
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