India (MNN) — Four women serving
as Gospel for Asia missionaries in Haryana, India, were severely beaten in
their home on Sunday. Two GFA pastors were also injured in the attack, which
was carried out by radical Hindu groups.
"It happens to be one of the most difficult states for preaching the
Gospel," says K.P. Yohannan, founder and president of Gospel for Asia.
Speaking from India, Yohannan says, "The sisters were round up by a large
number of Hindu fanatics. And, this usually hardly ever happens. They simply
began beating up the sisters."
The two GFA pastors were also attacked.
Yohannan says, "Hindu religious fundamentalists have been making every possible attempt to stop all Christian work in this state for some time. These fundamentalists routinely
target Christians, and now they are even attacking women."
Missionaries Vanmala, Lata, Udaya and Ramita have been working in this area for about a year. They have faced fierce opposition since they began their work.
Yohannan says the situation was
made even worse. "The police are supposed to be rescuing, or helping or
defending, one of the policemen turned out to be as radical as the people that
we were beating them up and he joined with them."
According to Yohannan, these ladies have no intentions of giving up. "These sisters, in spite of being beaten up by the people and the police, they have told our leader, 'you know
what? We want to go back to the same place, share the Gospel with these people.'"
Yohannan says while he's concerned about the abuse, "Where ever there has been increasing persecution, there has been more people coming to Christ."
Their attackers represent three different Hindu fundamentalist groups, all with ties to the Sangh Parivar, a group of organizations promoting the Hindutva philosophy. Hindutva literally means "Hindu-ness."
These organizations are part of a growing Hindu
supremacist ideology that has a purely Hindu nation as its goal. "To be
Indian is to be Hindu," this dogma declares. Those who hold to this
philosophy are part of a small but powerful group of extremists attempting to
control the Dalit ("Untouchable") and low-caste majority for their
Women's outreach is a vital part of GFA's ministry. Yohannan
explains. "The most unreached peoples in this part of the world are the
women and the children. And, we are trying to start more Bible colleges
exclusively to train sisters to be missionaries. We do need help."
For as little as $30 a month, you can help train a Christian
young lady to reach out to the most unreached people of India. Click here to
donate to their work.
GFA leaders ask for prayer for the healing and safety of the missionaries involved in the attack as they continue to share the Gospel in Haryana. They also seek prayer for the fundamentalists
who carried out the beating, that they would come to know Jesus as their Savior
and abandon the pursuit of Hindutva.