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Voting Missionary Chased Down

Gospel for Asia
11/21/08 CHHATTISGARH, INDIA (ANS) — When he went back to his home village to vote in India’s recent elections, Gospel for Asia missionary Jadesh Kour faced an array of opposition and never got to cast his ballot.

Jadesh serves the Lord in Chhattisgarh near the border of Orissa, India. On November 14, he travelled with his wife and children 19 miles to his hometown-where he was the only Christian. He and his family had to stand in line on the side of the road to wait for his turn to vote.

When the villagers heard Jadesh was in town, they started stirring up complaints against him. Trying to scare the missionary, a villager drove his tractor down the road and purposefully sped toward Jadesh. Then the driver, with a gang of young people, surrounded Jadesh and started threatening him.

Seeing that the situation was quickly turning violent, a peaceful group of villagers came to Jadesh’s rescue and offered him a place to hide. But when the gang found out where he was hiding, they surrounded the house and threatened to burn it with him and his family inside. Again, the other group of villagers told the mob to leave Jadesh alone.

It wasn’t until 3 a.m. that Jadesh, with his shirt torn and his bike confiscated, could return with his family to his village. Police told Jadesh he had to pay 6,000 rupees (US$120) to get his bike back and that they couldn’t protect him from the angry mob.

“You became a Christian, and the villagers are not happy,” the village leaders told Jadesh. “This is election season, and we can’t do anything to help you.”

Jadesh is pastor of a church and has started seven fellowship groups. He also oversees an orphanage and Bridge of Hope center. He asks for prayer that the Lord will give him strength and courage to continue serving, and that he can get his bike back without paying the fine. He also desires that the people who opposed him will come to know Jesus.