Thursday, April 4, 2013

Police prevent believers from stopping the destruction of their church

India (MNN) ― In the "Hindu Heartland" of India, another church falls victim to anti-Christian attacks.

A group of villagers in Chhattisgarh recently destroyed a 300-person church.

"It took about an hour for a year's worth of labor to be just completely undone." says Lindsay Ackerman of Grand Rapids, Michigan-based Mission India.

Ackerman says the church was planted by one of Mission India's church-planting partners in India. Christ-followers had scrimped and saved all year for a new church building, and in February their dream came true.

"The church members had worked for over a year to secure the legal documents they needed to build their first small church," says Ackerman.

Soon, someone donated a piece of land, legal paperwork was completed, and construction began on the new church. Its doors opened two months ago, and believers had their first worship service in the new building.

"Suddenly with no warning, a group of 100 people from the nearby village showed up and demolished the church," Ackerman explains. Believers were helpless as their church fell to the ground.

"Police were actually present and were pushing believers away who were trying to stop attackers from tearing down their brand new church."

There seem to be many indications the Good News was involved.

"The Gospel had been spreading, and I'm sure that was a factor behind the attack," states Ackerman. "When people start to see that many people coming to Christ--the response to the Gospel, they want to do anything they can to stop it."

It's a difficult time in Chhattisgarh.

"This church was built with a lot of joy and hope," says Ackerman. "Right now, all that exists is just a heap of rubble, and they are discouraged."

However, believers are still holding worship services. In fact, they're worshipping God right next to the demolished structure.

Pray "that they would have a sense of Christ's presence in their midst, understanding that a building is not what their faith is all about."

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