Church in Southern India Burned Down Following Threats by Local Extremists
10/20/2020 India (International Christian Concern) – Last month, a church in India’s Andhra Pradesh state was set on fire by suspected religious extremists. According to the church’s leadership, extremists had issued several threats against the church if the church was not closed down.
On September 8, at around midnight, neighbors of the Christian Miracle Church, located in Ponduru town, reported flames and smoke coming out of the church building. As Pastor Prabhu Das, head pastor of Christian Miracle Church, and his son, Jeevan, arrived on the scene, they witnessed the flames consume the church building and Pastor Prahbu Das’ car.
After the arson attack, Pastor Prabhu Das filed a formal complaint with local police. First Information Report number 443/2020 was filed against unknown people for burning down the church and the investigation is underway.
“We have encountered opposition from the Hindu religious extremists several times in the past,” Jeevan told International Christian Concern (ICC). “The radicals have threated us to stop the church activities in the town. They have warned us of the consequences if we failed to close down the church.”
“I never expected this to happen,” Jeevan continued. “I suspect this is the work of those who threatened us and told us to close down the church.”
Pastor Prabhu Das has been running the Christian Miracle Church in Ponduru town for nearly 38 years. Nearly 300 Christians regularly worship in the church.
“This incident has caused a lot of terror and concern among the members of our church,” Jeevan told ICC. “Unless the culprits are brought to justice, the attendance of the church could go down significantly. Please pray that justice will be served in this case.”
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