The disabled are the focus of ministry in India

By January 18, 2006

India (MNN) — India is home to a number of unreached peoples. However, one unreached people group doesn’t speak the same language and they’re not from the same tribe. They’re not even be from the same area of the country. We’re talking about the millions of disabled people in India.

Tim Swauger is with Mission to Unreached Peoples. He works with the disabled in India and they’ve just formed a partnership with Joni and Friends. “Joni and Friends and Mission to Unreached Peoples are in a partnership to reach the estimated 60 to 100 million with disabilities in India. And, we have a project that integrates the Wheels for the World program that distributes wheel chairs along with evangelistic outreach activities.”

According to Swauger, this is a segment of society largely ignored in India. He says that shouldn’t be. “As you look into the Word of God and see Jesus going from village to village, some of the first people He brings transformation to are people with disabilities.”

The partnership with Joni and Friends is strategic, says Swauger. “One of the things that we see Joni and Friends doing in India, along with Mission to Unreached Peoples, is helping to establish partnerships with churches and other mission organizations so that we can encourage them to consider integrating disability ministry as a strategy that they can reach in to communities.”

As Christians take an interest in their lives, Swauger says these people are very open to the Gospel. “It might have to do with ostracism. It might have to do with feeling like you can’t find a place in society. And, as a consequence they’re looking for hope. And, the one thing that Jesus provides in their life is hope.”

As these people come to Christ and proactively pursue vocational and other self improvement programs, they become a profound testimony. “When people around them, family members, community members, neighbors see that transformation in their lives it has such an impact on their lives it has such an impact. It’s a huge message to the community, to the family, of what Jesus can do in their own lives,” says Swauger.

Sponsors are needed to help a disabled child. Volunteers are needed to help with their Wheels for the World trips. And, occupational therapists are needed to help build relationships between Christians and the disabled.

Click on the link below to find out about Mission to Unreached Peoples. If you’d like to help Wheels For the World, go to http://www.WheelsForTheWorld.org.

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