Arson Attack on Indian Church
05/10/09 India (International Christian Concern) - An anti-Christian group set fire to the Holy Spirit Church of God Ministry Church in Andhra Pradesh, India, on Tuesday.
According to the witnesses, the church's main door was demolished and the interior of the church was set on fire. The fire destroyed wooden furniture, the pulpit and wooden bars supporting the roof. The roof currently appears to be intact despite the lack of supports holding it up.
Rev. Clinton, the pastor of the church, said that a few days ago a nearby church was destroyed in the same manner by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) activists. While this is a copycat incident, it is not likely that the same group is responsible for both attacks.
Neighbors noticed the fire at 2am, and immediately alerted the pastor and church membership. Several members of the church rushed to the spot to put out the fire, but were unable to rescue anything from inside the church.
Pastor Clinton and the elders of the church rushed to the police station to report the incident.
The police are investigating the case, but have not arrested any of the suspects. Pastor Clinton is concerned that the fire might have been set by the neighbouring land owner, who has in the past indicated his desire to build apartments on the church property.