Christians laud a court’s verdict in India.

By September 17, 2003

India (MNN)–Christians of Nagaland and Manipur have hailed the court’s verdict in the Graham Staines murder case.

On Monday, the court convicted main accused Dara Singh and 12 others in connection with the murder. Grand Rapids, Michigan-based Mission India’s John DeVries says the verdict sends a message of tremendous encouragement to the church. “The court system of India is upholding the constitution, and the wanton acts of terrorism that have been occurring so much are going to be treated fairly.”

Orissa State, where the Staines murder occurred, is openly hostile to Christians. DeVries describes how believers may see the verdict effecting ministry. “I wouldn’t dare to predict what would come, except that it is a positive thing. It is an encouragement to those who are struggling of saying, ‘There is hope that the laws of India still will be upheld.'”

Local media reports say Staines’ widow, Gladys, was reluctant to talk about the verdict, other than to say she had no personal reaction to it.

When asked whether punishment is immaterial to her since she has forgiven the guilty she responded, “Yes, so far as I am concerned I have forgiven them and that has given a healing touch.”

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