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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”” use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_single_image image=”99698″ img_size=”full” add_caption=”yes” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]09/26/2019 Washington D.C. (International Christian Concern)Deep within the central Indian state of Chhattisgarh is the tiny, rural village of Kokoda Juganar. For the past five years, that village has been home to only one Christian family — a 45-year-old woman named Mangai and her two sons. Mangai is treated as a social outcast and prohibited from doing basic activities, such as taking drinking water from the public well, because of her faith. Working as a cook at a local school, she was threatened to stop cooking for the students, as the Hindu radicals believed that she defiled the food by touching it.

Mangai heard the Gospel as a child from her parents, but truly accepted Christ five years ago. While attending church, she received a miraculous healing from a long-suffering disease. Mangai told International Christian Concern (ICC), “I became a different person altogether when I started [to] believe in Jesus and started going to the church. I received peace in my heart and I have eternal hope.” All of this came after losing her husband 13 years ago and only sustaining herself and her boys through the help of extended family.

The pressure continued to mount against Mangai from village leaders, who insisted that she renounce her Christian faith to avoid conflict. Three times she was summoned to answer to them and three times she refused to leave her faith. Eventually, she was told to renounce Jesus or leave.

Mangai’s maternal uncle lives in the same village and, upon hearing the threats against her, he worried for her. He beseeched his niece to recant her faith so that she could stay and no harm would come to the family. She explained, “My uncle’s attempts to persuade me to renounce Jesus were not because he hated [my] Christian faith, but because he wanted me to be safe.” On July 28, those threats her uncle so feared became real.

He would have killed me if I hadn’t run for my life on that day,” Mangai summarized in shock.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”“I have nothing of my own except my two sons, but I have no regrets of all that happened, God gave me peace in my heart.”” font_container=”tag:h5|text_align:left” use_theme_fonts=”yes” css=”.vc_custom_1569505925692{margin-top: 50px !important;margin-bottom: 60px !important;padding-right: 20px !important;padding-left: 20px !important;}”][vc_column_text css=”.vc_custom_1569505914398{margin-bottom: 0px !important;}”]

A knife-wielding attacker came for Mangai. Terrorizing her while in the middle of her prayers, she very narrowly escaped being killed. She recalled, “It was in the evening when I was praying with one other person in my house. Suddenly, a person named Tufka broke into my house with [a] knife. Before I could make out what was going on, Tufka tried to stab me. I narrowly escaped the deeper impact of the knife into my stomach, and I ran to the neighbor’s house to protect my life. What frightened me was Tufka yelling at me while he attacked, saying, ‘I will kill you. The entire village warned you to leave Jesus, but you never take note of the warning.’”

Tufka was allegedly hired to kill Mangai after the repeated warnings she received from village authorities. As a result of this close call, Mangai and her two sons—the last Christians in residence in Kokoda Juganar—fled. The light of Christ in the village was gone.

During a recent trip to Chhattisgarh, ICC was able to sit with Mangai. Here, she explained how difficult the path of faith has been for her. As tears rolled down her face, Mangai shared, “I am not sure of tomorrow, but I know my God will make a way for me, I had to leave everything back in the village, my house, household things, my job, and my extended family members, and I can never go back to the village even to collect my household things. I have nothing of my own except my two sons, but I have no regrets of all that happened, God gave me peace in my heart.”

She continued, “Life was not easy at all. Every day was a challenge to live as a Christian in this area, but God gave me grace each day until today. God has brought me this far, and I will never leave him no matter what.”

Just like Mangai, the Christians of Chhattisgarh have experienced continued hardships, social boycotts, and physical assaults for their faith. Just like Mangai, hundreds of thousands need the prayers of the global Church.

For interviews, please contact Olivia Miller, Communications Coordinator: [email protected]