India (MNN) — Up to 20,000
Indian Christians remain refugees two years after a wave of attacks by militant
Hindus in Orissa. Many are still unable to return
to their villages for fear of death or forcible conversions to Hinduism.
The displacement has taken its toll on Orissa's children, too. Many saw their
schools destroyed, or they fear being attacked while attending school. Others have failed their exams because of the
severe disruption caused by the riots and displacement.
Things have calmed, but believers
still face challenges. That's proving
true for Worldwide Christian Schools.
Scott Vanderkooy explains what's happening with their partner, New Life
School and Orphanage. "The school
currently operates in a rented space owned by a Hindu family, and the lease
has just been shortened. The school has less than five months to complete their
new school building."
New Life provides schooling
and a permanent home for 75 children, and schooling for an additional 100
children in Orissa, India.
Vanderkooy points out that while
the April 2010 eviction isn't legal, there's not much they can do. It's not likely they'll find a new place to
rent. But, it's not ALL bad news. He says, "There is a new school that has been
started, but $87,000 are needed yet to finish it on time."
The school building has been
under construction for three years. They have been using a rented building to hold
WWCS donors funded the first floor, but a
second story and a roof are still needed in order to serve the 175 students who
come from all over to attend this unique, Christ-centered school in the center
of strong Hindu and Muslim influence.
Vanderkooy says the school's response
will speak volumes about the Gospel. Many
children who attend the school do not come from Christian families, giving the
staff of New Life School an opportunity to share Christ's love and principles
with the children. In this case, he
says, "It's how Christians handle problems like this. Do we handle these
problems as the world handles them? Or do we have a different method? I think
this school, in particular, is a great example of Christ's love."
Click here if you want to help finish the new building. Another
way to help is to sponsor a student. Through this program, funds will
help address the true cost of education for these students, at approximately
$175 per student.