India (MNI) — August marks the 5-year anniversary of the arrest of six Children’s Bible Club leaders. Maybe you remember the story.
Grand Rapids, Michigan-based Mission India staff share both the background and the current details in this blog post:
Late one night in 2009, a mob of 20 anti-Christian extremists burst into a training for Year-Long Children’s Bible Club leaders. Shouting, they moved from room to room. The extremists dragged people out of bed, beat them without mercy, and burned every book and Bible they saw.
Police arrived on the scene, but instead of protecting the victims, they arrested six Children’s Bible Club partners. They were all jailed on false charges of coercing children to become Christians.
Mission India’s Children’s Bible Club partners were finally released on bail—but that was only the beginning of five grueling years of legal wrangling.
At least once a month for the past five years, they have to drop everything to travel to Karnataka, India to appear before the court.
To date: more than 60 trips.
It’s a hassle and an added expense; several of our partners must travel 12 hours just to get there. But there seems to be no end in sight.
Every time they appear in court, an excuse is given to postpone the case:
- “The judge himself did not turn up in court.”
- “The police did not send summons to the witnesses because of the Ganesh [Hindu] festival holidays.”
- “We want 10 more witnesses (other than the five who already testified) from a different area.”
What can you do? Pray.
Pray that there will be no further delays in the courts. Pray that the false charges will finally be dropped. And pray for the safety of this year’s Year-Long Children’s Bible Club leaders, who are being trained this month in India!