COMIX35 (ROX35 Media Inc) began with a vision to make better use of comic-style literature in missions. Nate Butler wanted to use comics and his 20+ years as a professional comics producer to reach people for Christ. The Lord brought him together with Clyde Cowan and Cathleen Sward to found what is now called COMIX35, to help Christian missionaries, nationals, and publishers who wanted to develop print material that people would actually read.
With more people reading comics-style literature than any other printed material on earth, it was a natural to think in terms of using comics for Christ in the many nations of comics readers.
From the start, the goal was to provide seminars, consulting and coaching to missionaries and local believers to produce comic books within their respective countries. This eliminated the minefield of cultural unknowns, eliminated translation, and maximized the impact of a small teaching team by empowering many others in their local contexts.
In January 1996 the First International Christian Comics Training Conference was held in the Philippines with participants from 12 countries. Over half the participants were decision makers in literature ministries, and over half were also non-Western.
The conference so exceeded the expectations of both leaders and participants that it created demand for more such training, and for on-site coaching and consultation for missionary and national comics production teams.
Since that first successful event, the ministry has held almost 40 other COMIX35 events of various sizes, lengths and formats around the world for more than 900 attendees representing over 50 different countries.
Nate Butler has served as the primary teacher at these events with other professionals, local Christian comics producers, and young “teacher trainees” assisting at various seminars across the globe.
A number of successful publishing projects have been launched or refined as a result of these seminars, including Éclats in Africa, Jungle Village in Malaysia, PowerMark in Singapore/USA, and Dorie the Girl Nobody Loved in Eastern Europe. Also, numerous tracts have been developed, inspired, and/or refined through COMIX35 seminars. Many people are being reached through materials produced as a result of these events.
In October 1999 Nate Butler met Roald Lidal of New Life Ministries at a Christian comics meeting in Tokyo. The two men found that they shared the same vision and passion to reach the Japanese people through manga, the very popular style of comics in that country. They also saw the potential for Christian Japanese manga to reach youth all around the world due to the international appeal of this style. For several years the two ministries worked together on a Japanese graphic novel series in five editions: Manga Messiah, Manga Metamorphosis, Manga Mutiny, Manga Melech, and Manga Messengers. Roald Lidal served on the COMIX35 Board during this time and still serves on COMIX35's International Advisory Council.
In 2007 COMIX35 began to initiate and facilitate "special focus" publishing projects to help Christian creators more directly with the publication of their own projects. This is in keeping with the original philosophy of COMIX35 to encourage and enable Christians within a culture to create their own Christian comics without extra influence from outside their culture.
The COMIX35 Board decided in January 2013 that the ministry would concentrate on ministry projects in US prisons, Québec, and French-speaking Africa. A few months later The Lord also opened the door for COMIX35 to begin a work with Native Americans and ministry workers who want to serve them.