Christians forced to reconvert, threatened with expulsion from village.West Bengal
Pastor Ramu Hala serves with Oasis Ministries in a village called Bilkua in Paschim Medinipur, a district in West Bengal, India.
As told to the Persecution Relief, Pastor Ramu travels from village to village to share the gospel and pray for the sick. Through the power of the gospel, not only were the sick healed, but many were set free from the bondage of evil spirits.
Witnessing the miraculous power of the Gospel, the people in the village were happy to accept Jesus Christ into their lives. The Deliverance and peace they experienced led them to start assembling at a fellow villager, Gopal Bhakta’s home.
A while back, around 12 Christians were sitting and praying together when they were suddenly interrupted by a group of Religious Fanatics who forcefully stopped the meeting accusing them of religious conversion. Later when Pastor Ramu arrived and restarted the meeting, the angry fanatics who were backed by the village heads, stopped him and threatened him to never enter the village again. The dejected Pastor left and was never allowed to conduct any worship services in the village of Bilkua. This made the villagers very unhappy.
The religious fanatics threatened to boycott the Christians from every village activity including no permission to take water from the well and no work in the fields etc. If they do not re-convert to Hinduism.
In the mean time, a concerned Pastor Ramu started a worship service in another village near by so that the Christians from Bilkua could continue to gather for prayer and worship. They now travel to the near by village for fellowship.
Rev. Arpan informed Persecution Relief about a meeting which was held on 13/12/19 at 2pm where all the believers were summoned, 16 Christians in all, mostly women whose husbands have still not come to faith. The village head has asked them to bring their husbands on Sunday the 15/12/19 where they will be confronted and forced to decide to chose to reconvert to Hinduism or follow Jesus and be expelled from the village.
Persecution Relief spoke to Rev Sam who is in charge of Oasis Ministries. He told us that they are trusting God to make a way. He has requested the Church to support them in prayer.
Persecution Relief has recorded 330 incidents of hate crime against Christians in 2016, 440 incidents in 2017, 477 incidents in 2018 and till September 2019 we have recorded 349 incidents of Christian Persecution against Christians in India.
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