India (MNN) — There's an alarming trend developing in
Northeast India. Criminals are now
posing as missionaries.
According to a report from the Times of India, children from
Manipur, Nagaland and other neighboring states were recently rescued from a
facility disguised as a Christian children's home at Kuzhithurai in Kanyakumari
Dave Stravers of Grand Rapids, Michigan-based Mission India shares
his concerns about what this might mean for other ministries with legitimate
operations in the region. "Here we
have child traffickers going into poor communities posing as Christian workers,
taking their children from them, telling them that they're going to bring their
children to homes where they'll be well-cared for, and then exploiting these
Although their work has not been directly affected by this
problem, Stravers says these criminals are exploiting Christians, which DOES involve
them. "Christians have a reputation
for their children's work. So, this kind of news casts an evil shadow over all
the good Christian work that's happening."
Children's Bible Clubs are reaching these boys and girls
with the message of hope. Doors open in the families when the parents see life change. As God transforms entire communities, Church Planters introduce the Gospel and
establish worship groups. Mission India's
hope one day is to have at least one worker in every village in India, but
trust is a key component in the early stages.
What can you do? Stravers says, "Pray hard that these
terrible strategies of our enemy will be thwarted, that the real Christians
will really be empowered to help children in their communities and to show the
love of Christ to people in a way that they'll know there's a difference."
On a side note: the
National Council of Churches in India plans to hold a symposium to raise
awareness of child trafficking among churches and NGOs. We'll
keep you updated.