In the United States, we’re no strangers to tragic devastation this month. On the heels of Hurricane Harvey came Hurricane Irma, followed by Maria for our friends in Puerto Rico. With each storm came suspense, fear, and uncertainty. As we grieve lost lives and homes in the U.S. and Caribbean, our partners in India know the feeling.
Over this past summer, flooding in South Asia killed over 1,300 people, hitting especially hard in India, Nepal, and Bangladesh.
The northern districts of West Bengal are experiencing landslides and blocked roads and railroads. 789 relief camps are set up in the region to house 300,089 people. Deaths occurred due to drowning, snake bites, and dehydration. In the affected areas, schools are not functional.
In the Indian states of West Bengal and Bihar, our own partners were affected. Leaders in all three of our programs reported damaged crops, cattle, and homes (many made of mud) that will be expensive to repair. And, sites of our Year-Long Children’s Bible Clubs and Adult Literacy Classes have been flooded as well.
Despite the chaos that has overwhelmed our friends in India, we know that God is present and are reminded of Isaiah 40:29, which says, “He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak,” continuing in verse 31 to say, “but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.”
We are grateful that our partners know the hope of the Lord, and continue our mission to reach those in the region who have yet to hear the Gospel. We come alongside our partners in prayer, and they graciously share that they are praying for those affected by similar conditions in the U.S.