India is the second most populated country in the world with estimations now reaching over one billion. Within the nation of India about seven out of ten people are Hindus. Hindus believe in a supreme being called Brahman. This supreme power is represented by three main gods: Brahma, the generator or creator; Vishnu, the operator or preserver; and Shiva, the destroyer but then there is a complexity of many other lesser gods. There is a wide variety of ways in which the Hindus worship their many gods. Some go to the temple offering flowers and fruit as a sacrifice or offerings. Some people have a small shrine in their home, perhaps in a separate room where all members of the family come together. It is into this culture that we have been enabled to bring the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The Apostle wrote to the Corinthians to encourage them in similar circumstances. 1 Corinthians 8:5-6 "For although there may be so-called gods in heaven or on earth—as indeed there are many "gods" and many "lords"— 6yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist." The message that is preached to our friends in West Bengal is that of salvation, they are told of how Jesus Christ came to redeem them and include them in God's purpose for His people.
Through the ministry of Covenant Leadership Training Institute (CLTI) we are able to train local leaders and further epuip them for work in the ministry within their own culture and community. CLTI was established by Dr. Steven J. Ottolini, as a vehicle by which local individuals can be discipled and matured in their faith. The teaching of this program emphasizes three things: Reformed theology; a fully developed pneumatology and a victorious eschatology.
These local leaders are in turn sent back to their villages and communities to preach the gospel as ministers of reconciliation. In the midst of a culture which shuns and persecutes Christians new churches are being planted and more and more people are coming to a saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ through means of this ministry.
Ministry to the Poor
Through means of Living Hope International, our own non profit ministry to the poor, we are able to directly bring aid to those in need in India.
Living Hope has provided basic tools to impoverished families, helping them to provide for themselves, simple things such as bicycles, sewing machines and farming tools are some of the items given.
Living Hope is active in supporting full time workers who serve the needs of children whose parents have been affected by leprosy. There is a leper colony in Perulia where our partners on the ground offer their help and assistance. In this leper colony the children receive food, clothing and education.
Living Hope also provides toilets, plumbing and sanitation lines to the leper colony to improve the living conditions of this extremely impoverished community.
Thank you once more to those of you who have partnered with us in faithful giving, your gift does make a significant difference in the lives of others.