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Published on 29 December, 2006

Sri Lankan Christians face dilemma

USA (MNN) — A humanitarian crisis continues in Sri Lanka as Tamil Tiger and Sri Lankan troops continue to clash in renewed violence. The violence has caused food shortages and economic problems for parts of the nation. Attacks against Christians, seems to come in waves

Jith Fernando works with Youth for Christ in Sri Lanka and is the Bible expositor for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship Urbana ’06. He says because of change in the religion law, Christians aren’t able to help with relief and the Gospel. “There has been so (many accusations) that Christians have been bribing people into becoming Christians.”

Because of those accusations, Christians have had to do some things to change the perception, says Fernando. “The social work is being done by one group,” he says, “And, the Gospel proclamation is done by (another) group. So, that the group does the proclamation are known as people who are here for proclamation purposes.”

Fernando says this may actually be a good strategy in light of the situation in Sri Lanka. “Because of the poverty of the people and the loss of identity, it is very easy for people to become Christians just to get something.”

Fernando spoke to the crowd of more than 22,000 young people encouraging them to be worthy of God’s calling on their lives whatever it may be.

“I think expounding the Scriptures can be an tremendous impetus to getting people involved in God’s mission. So, my hope it that they will realize the glory of the Gospel and this whole missionary movement and want to be part of that.”

People from more than 140 nations, from every state and province in the U-S and Canada are attending this record breaking Urbana ’06 convention, which continues through December 31 in Saint Louis, Missouri.

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