MNN journeys to the world’s largest democracy

By February 13, 2013

India (MNN) — Did you know India is the world's largest democracy?

It's also one of the poorest nations on earth and consistently denies basic human rights to its people. Take the Dalits, for example.

They're the lowest of the low on India's caste system, living essentially as "social lepers." Dalits are forced to live in separate settlements similar to a leper colony, and are given only the most menial tasks: unclogging sewers, disposing of dead bodies, cleaning latrines, etc.

I first learned about them from a chapel speaker during my freshman year at Cornerstone University. He shared a story with us about a woman who was covered in syrup, tied to a tree, and eaten alive by ants–simply because she was a Dalit.

The injustice of the Dalits' situation resonated in me as a woman unwanted. Since then, I've felt God calling me to be a Voice for the Voiceless in India.

When I began working at Mission Network News in 2008, I uncovered more and more of India's horrors: the government's desperate attempt to wipe out believers in Orissa; the nightmare created by India's thriving "medical tourism" industry; the shocking normalcy of daughters sold into sex slavery.

And don't forget the rape case that grabbed international attention in December. A woman around my age was beaten, repeatedly raped and abused with a piece of metal. The attack was so severe that she later died from her injuries.

Why would I still have a passion for India after encountering stories like these? Because I know my God reigns, and I want to see how His love and mercy are changing lives; I want to know the silver lining.

Over the next two weeks, you can join me to see firsthand how Christ's love goes forth despite tragedy.

There are a lot of security issues and precautions, so pray for safety for our team as we travel. Please pray that God will remind Jeff, my husband, that He's protecting me and has me under His wing.

Thank you for your prayers and thank you for joining me on this exciting journey through India!

Story filed by Katey Hearth, Mission Network News

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