As our children head back to school this week, we want to share the story of what God is doing in schools in some of the most dangerous places to follow Jesus, especially among the most persecuted Christians.
In a nation where faith can be a source of division, some stories inspire and remind us of the enduring power of the Christian community. Roshan, a seven-year-old boy from India, and his family have experienced the depths of faith, religious persecution, and, ultimately, hope.
Roshan’s Family and Their Faith
Roshan’s mother, Devi, grew up in a Hindu home but was always drawn to the Christian community in a neighbouring village. Her curiosity led her to attend worship services where she found hope in the teachings of Jesus. Devi’s decision to embrace Christianity didn’t come without challenges, especially after her husband left her. But her determination to follow Christ and secure her children’s future was unwavering.
The hardest part of Devi’s journey was the rejection she faced from her own family. They disowned her and her children, branding her faith as a source of shame. Devi’s courageous decision to follow Jesus came at a price – the loss of financial security and the support of her in-laws.
Finding a Community of Faith
Devi and her children embarked on a difficult journey, searching for a place where they could belong. Village after village rejected them due to their faith, until they reached a small Christian community nestled amidst a forest. Here, they found acceptance, hope, and a place to call home.
Despite the challenges, Devi found work and a close-knit Christian community where she experienced abundant support and love. In times of need, they helped one another, exemplifying the true essence of faith in action.
A Brighter Future with Bridge Schools
Roshan’s story took an inspiring turn when Open Doors local partners stepped in. They provided essential supplies to the community and initiated a ‘bridge school’ for children like Roshan who were eager to learn. This meant that, after a period of displacement, Roshan could go back to school in safety.
For Roshan, this opportunity meant not only education but also a chance for Christian children to play, learn, and celebrate their faith. They are devoted to teaching Jesus to children, loving their enemies, and raising the next generation of the Church.
Devi expressed her gratitude for the bridge school, emphasising that it focuses on both education and spiritual nourishment through children’s ministry. The school is a beacon of hope for the children, offering them a chance to learn, grow, and develop both academically and spiritually.
After the Christmas break, Roshan is excited to go back to school, knowing that, amid rampant religious persecution, school is a safe place.
Devi’s family, like many others in their situation, lives in poverty. Their village needs more basic amenities like electricity, water, and medical facilities. The partnership with Open Doors partners provides essential support, giving them hope for a better future.