Missionaries Burned Alive

January 18, 2008

Pockets of Violent Eruptions Continue in Orissa

Christian Aid just received more grim news on the violence against Christians in the Kandhamal District of Orissa. Four different ministries supported by Christian Aid echo these tragic reports:

  1. At least four Christian missionaries have been burned alive. At least 200 people are still missing, 100 of whom are presumed dead.
  2. The second report confirms the burning of four missionaries and told of another one who was able to escape. Believers ordered to convert to Hinduism – at gunpoint.
  3. Fact-finding team discloses it was a mixture of Hindu tribal activists and Hindu fundamentalists instigating the recent campaign of terror against Christians. They were also responsible for the felling of trees and stones on the hilly roads thus preventing police intervention. Devastation of homes, churches, vehicles, and personal effects has traumatized believers.
  4. Conditions for victims are still squalid, contributing even more to their misery. Relief camps are sending them back to villages where their homes were destroyed – with no food, no water, no means of shelter, and no clothing (except what they´ve had on their backs on since December 24th).

The government has promised various forms of relief, but so far nothing has materialized. One of the leaders of these ministries assisted by Christian Aid has made an urgent plea regarding shelter and basic necessities. For $130 clothing, cooking utensils and food would be provided to one family for one month. Most homes are destroyed beyond repair, but $600 could construct a new one.

Pray for the safety of these believers, and that indigenous ministries assisted by Christian Aid will be able to provide help as they receive funds from donors in America.