Church burned & Pastor injured in Tamil Nadu
Pastor C. Krishnaraj was badly burnt after the roof cladding fell on top of him, as the Church was ‘intentionally’ set on fire by religious fundamentalists.
Pastor Krishnaraj ministers at “Hallelujah Church”, in Sengipatti is a village in Budalur taluk of Thanjavur district of Tamil Nadu. On the 12th of March, as had been the practice for several years, Pastor left his residence around noon, to go to the Church which is nearby, to pray in solitude, from 12 to 1 pm.
The Church building was made of concrete walls and corrugated steel roofing. Owing to the summer heat in Tamil Nadu, coconut fronds clad the roof, above the steel sheeting. Pastor had built the Church around 6 years ago, where over 30 believers congregated every Sunday to worship Jesus Christ.
Around 12.30 pm, while he was still inside the Church, on his knees in prayer, he was rudely disturbed by the shouts of “Fire! Fire!!”. As the Pastor rushed out, he was surprised to see most of the neighborhood gathered outside the Church. By the time, he could comprehend the turn of events, a large quantity of smoldering coconut fronds fell on top of him and badly burnt and bruised his shoulders. Pastor was rushed to the nearby Government Hospital, where after giving him first-aid for the burns, was released. However, on the 15th March, the wounds were still inflamed and yet to heal, causing a lot of pain and discomfort. So, he had gone back to the Hospital for further treatment.
Speaking to Persecution Relief Founder, from the hospital bed, Pastor was very discouraged and felt abandoned, that nobody had come to enquire about his welfare.
He told the Founder, “No one has come to enquire about me or the incident. You are the first person, whom I have never spoken to or seen before, who is calling to enquire about the incident and offer me words of comfort. Please pray for me, the Church and my family”.
He was concerned about the future of the Church, since this was the only place where people congregated. He had spent close to 1 Lakh to construct the Church building to accommodate 50 believers, which was now lost in the fire. He claimed that he had no money to get treated at a Private Hospital nor money to rebuild the Church.
Pastor is married and is lives with his wife and a 4-year old daughter.
Police have determined that unknown vandals had intentionally set fire to a church and are treating this case of arson, as a hate crime. The fire mostly damaged the roof of the Church and partially damaged the rest of the structure. Authorities are still trying to determine who is responsible for the vandalism, Pastor said.
Persecution Relief have extended financial relief to meet immediate medical expenses.
Church, please pray for Pastor Krishnaraj, that he will continue to trust and commit his soul to his faithful Creator God, whose mercy is from everlasting to everlasting, whose justice cannot be overruled, and has a good plan for him, no matter how bad the situation looks
“Every time we pray, our horizon is altered, our attitude to things is altered, not sometimes but every time, and the amazing thing is that we don’t pray more,” said Oswald Chambers.
These are indeed the times that try men’s souls. So, Church, please pray more.
2018 Persecution Relief News
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