Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Hindu radicals continue to target Christians in India

One night in July 2010, at midnight, Hindu radicals marched through a village in Karnataka state, India. They were wearing their distinctive bright orange headbands. More than 500 believers were rounded up and forced to pray to Hindu gods.

Four pastors were also arrested that night. One of the pastors later said, "I was frightened. I didn't know why they had come to harass me. They beat me with their hands on my legs and head. They yelled that I was forcibly converting people to Christianity, and then they dragged me off to jail. They asked me to renounce Christ. I told them that I had surrendered my life to Christ and will not worship any other god. They threatened me but finally left. I felt sympathy for them, and I pray for their salvation."

As the world's largest democracy, India proclaims religious freedom. But a rash of anti-conversion laws landed many Christian pastors in jail, leaving families alone without food or income. Many of the Christians are from tribal clans and lower caste ethnic groups. They are generally poorer and less educated than those in higher caste groups. Yet they stand firm in their faith in Christ and remain committed to spreading the gospel.

(news from Voice of the Martyrs, November 2010)

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