Hello from Orissa, India.
After many twists and turns, including untold negotiations with federal authorities in New Delhi, India, the State government in Orissa and the Indian Consulate in Toronto, I was finally granted permission to preach the Gospel here.
The backdrop to this campaign is that for the past 15 years Orissa has been known for communal violence, highlighted by the brutal murder of Australian missionary Graham Staines and his two sons in 1999. As late as August, 2008 there were thirty-five attacks on Christian institutions in one night.
Well the result has been wonderful. Yesterday representatives from Hinduism, Jainism, Islam, Bahai and Buddhism officially welcomed me to the city. This is very important, so that people of all religions will feel free to attend or Gospel Festival.
Hinduism is the largest religion, and this shows in the nightly meetings, as most of the healing testimonies come from Hindus. Today the very first testimony was from a 10 year old boy, born blind. He and his mother gave praise to Jesus. The people reacted with great joy, as the boy now could see very clearly.
Newspapers are writing very favorably. The best moment each night is when many thousands pray to receive Jesus Christ. This is truly Orissa’s time for harvest.
Hanapari Sing is an other heart-gripping story. She has been paralyzed and has received 5 dollars per month disability support from the government. Her family is very poor with an annual salary of $200. Living 400 km from the capital, they managed to borrow the $80 needed to get a car to drive Hanapari to the Gospel Festival. Last night she was healed, and today our TV team visited her. Everyone was in tears, seeing the wonder of God that had healed this hopeless girl. Please, keep on praying, and thank you for your giving.