Kathy's Blog

The light shines in darkness

When one woman says “yes” November 11, 2010

Filed under: India trip Delhi — Kathy Morgan @ 6:55 pm

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The finale of my trip to India – Delhi!  What a city of contrasts…ancient ruins, the British Raj (New Delhi), and modern buildings which speak to India’s growing economy.  Half of India’s population is below the poverty level, but an economy which is 3rd in the world expresses itself in a new middle class which is prospering and growing.  I had 4 days to experience this national capital….shopping, seeing ancient ruins, and New Delhi which houses the national government.  Trying to put this experience in words is difficult – masses of people, traffic, poverty, incense and spices in the air.  A modern city set in the ruins of an ancient civilization…the 7 cities of Delhi.  One thing I will always remember is the graciousness and hospitality of the Indian people. 

In Delhi, I saw what God can do through one woman who said “yes”.  Dr. Ananthi Jebasingh, a mother with small children, answered the door one day to find a child who asked “will you teach me?”   Through that divine encounter, a new ministry to the slum children of India was started.  Here is the link to her remarkable story: 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ycERNWFKCRY&feature=player_embedded#!  Because she said yes, schools all over India exist for the “outcast” children who would never get an education, or hear about Jesus.  I heard about her remarkable story 9 years ago when I attended Dallas Seminary.  Her daughter Shalini Patras and I had several classes together, and became great friends.  When this trip materialized Shalini and Vinay (her husband) arranged for me to visit the schools, as well as see Delhi.  I will always remember the children, and the staff of Good Samaritan….these schools are God’s oasis in the slums of India!  The first school I visited is one if the oldest Good Samaritan schools.  I walked off the street into a building with about 5 rooms….I met children who were nicely dressed, who welcomed me in English, and who quoted scripture and sang songs for me.  In India, learning English is essential for educational and business opportunities.  After I left this school, we walked the streets of the slum….I saw a boy playing in front of a pig, who loved posing for the camera.  I followed a group of women and also photographed 3 girls playing in the street with garbage all around.  As always, cows were with us…they live with the families.   

Sunday I went to another school located in a slum where church was being held.  When I walked off the street into the school I felt like I had gone to another world.  the area was clean, all the class rooms were clean, and there was a garden next to the building where church was being held.  I LOVE gardens, and this one really touched my heart.  It was so beautiful, with flowers and blooming vines.  Next to the garden was a big yard with green grass where the children could play….no cows, trash, or bricks.  What an oasis this place was!  The Pastor asked me to share a message so I spoke from Hebrews.  I know many of these Christians are persecuted when they leave the Hindu faith….their families reject them, as well as their friends.  I wanted to encourage them to not go back to their former ways, but to stand firm in their Christianity.  The Pastor spoke after I did, and expounded on what I had said.  I was so honored to be with these Christians in their church, and saw first hand the work God is doing in India.

 On Monday, I went back to the school where church was held.  I visited most of the classrooms, and talked with all the children.  They were very inquisitive, eager to learn, and just plain cute!!!    The Principal was so gracious to tell me about the work they are doing with the families, and what they want to accomplish with the students.  The teachers and staff are so dedicated and committed to the children and their families.  After I left this school, I went to the big school that was opened in 2005.  It is 4 stories high, and has 1,000 students K-12 grades.  The feeder schools I visited prior, are K-5 grades.  The students sang for me when I arrived..I felt like a V.I.P.!!  The Principal escorted me throughout the school and I met with students of all ages.  To see all of these children, and to listen to their dreams was such a gift to me.  I want to thank Roslyn who was my companion and guide the entire time I was in Delhi.  She graciously took time away from her family, and her school duties to make my time in Delhi so special; a time I will always remember.

This year, Vinay started a new ministry with the support of his wife Shalini, The Good Samaritans International.  They want to expand, and grow the current ministry in India.  They are starting Bible Study groups that will meet monthly to pray and talk about missions, and the role of missions in our world.  There are so many opportunities for this growing ministry in India such as Midwife training for maternal and child health, leadership and pastoral training, and educational and literacy for all ages.  If you would like more information about Good Samaritans International email Vinay at info@tgsionline.org     



The power of hope November 1, 2010

Filed under: India trip Raipur — Kathy Morgan @ 12:43 pm

People, cows, dogs and goats crowd the streets.  They share the “lanes” with cars, motorcycles, auto rickshaws, and bicycle rickshaws.  The auto rickshaws look like the three-wheeled US mail carts from the late 1960’s.  They are yellow and green completely covered, and can carry up the 3 people, but many are packed (I keep expecting to see a chinese fire drill).  The bicycle rickshaws are open carriages pulled by a man riding a bike (in place of a horse).  We did not see too many ox carts, though I have been told they are plentiful outside the city.  The street “lanes” really are not lanes….each vehicle makes their own lane – going either direction.  If your car does not have a horn, you are in big trouble.  You must drive fast, and honk your horn constantly to let the next person know they are about to be run over…all are aggressive motorists.  The law states that men riding motorcycles must wear a helmet, so you will see entire families on a motorcycle – husband, wife, 2 kids, with the man wearing a helmet.  Did not see any accidents, which surprized me considering all the traffic.

Another interesting revelation was that Water Buffalo and cows eat trash, or whatever they can find.  They wander the streets and neighborhoods all day then at the end of the day they line up to go home.  When I say home, I do not mean a barn or field, but a house where people live.  I watched them going in and out of homes….like our dogs and cats do.

The three-day Women’s conference was not anything I had expected.  We left Dallas planning for a three-day conference with up to 100 women who would be with us for the entire three days.  On Monday when we met at the OI office, Alicia accidentally discovered that all the women in the area had been invited, and because of the festival the women would only be able to attend one session.  The schools were closed for the week, and many families had out-of-town guests.  Because of the holiday, the women had limited time for the conference.   When ever change occurs, at first it is startling, but we could see that God was the change agent!  This would give us an opportunity to meet more Hindu women, and more would hear the gospel presentation.  On Tuesday morning we had approx. 50 – 80 women and children attend.  After the presentation we are able to tweak our talks to connect with the audience more.  I had to get used to having an interpreter, and realized these ladies like animation and comedy (like Bollywood).  I talked about providing good customer service in a dramatic, animated, and interactive way.  They love to laugh, and have fun.  For many of these women, meeting with their loan groups is the only time they get out of the house.  Several commented that their husbands mistreat and beat them.  At the conference, they would sit together on the same row, with the leader or most senior person on the aisle.  The caste system is very alive today in India.  As I looked into the eyes of these women, I could see they were searching for hope, and a better life.  They came looking for answers, for comfort, for validation, for a Savior.  The eyes are the window to the soul….I saw so many empty souls.  Hinduism is all about works, and not about relationship.  During each session, God’s presence was very strong.  Prayers were being answered, I could feel the light of Christ shining through me.  Alicia shared a bible story  about hope, and Apollos (the local evangelist) shared the gospel too.  At the end of each session, Alicia and I were mobbed by those in attendance.  They were so appreciative, and gracious.  I felt like a rock star, but knew it was not me they were

attracted to, it was the light of Christ.  Jesus was the rock star!  One woman told me she thought a new god had come….the interpreter told her it was Jesus.  Each session grew bigger and bigger.  The chairs came out of the room, so rugs could be put down on the floor to accommodate all who attended.  Most sat on the floor, and we were packed in like sardines.  At the end  750 women and children attended.  The Lord is so good…He knew what these women and children needed to hear, and brought each and everyone to hear about Him.  Please pray for these women, the local church in Raipur, and for those who work for OI in this area.  They can be persecuted for what was done at the conference – presenting the gospel.