by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) - As Hindu nationalist persecution against Christians in India continues to intensify, a married couple in Odisha state were recently beaten unconscious by a mob of radical Hindus enraged that the two had converted to Christianity, International Christian Concern (ICC reports).
Hindu radicals have become emboldened to attack Christians since the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party took power in 2014: many Indian states have enacted anti-conversion laws which are often abused to harass Christians and to keep Hindus from putting their faith in Jesus.
Mangal and Baja Raba were living in Odisha's Badliguda village when they both suddenly fell ill, ICC reports. They sought a cure for five years, trying everything from medicine to animal sacrifices, to no avail. Then, they were told about Jesus Christ: they traveled to a village where they heard believers were and received prayer in Jesus’ Name. They were healed miraculously and accepted Christ as their personal Savior, willingly and of their own accord.
The couple went on to host Sunday worship services in their home, with Pastor Madkami conducting prayer meetings there as well, ICC said. The activity began to anger local villagers. On one occasion a mob of 50-60 Hindu nationalists arrived at their home and demanded the couple renounce their faith in Christ. When the Rabas refused, the mob beat them unconscious and left them lying outside in the street.
A formal complaint was made at the local police station but no action was taken. The couple was forced to leave their village. Both of the families were forced to flee the village, ICC reports.
“Please join us in praying for our suffering brothers and sisters in India, and for the Lord to strengthen the church during these difficult times. Please also pray for those who persecute the church, that they will be transformed by the love of Jesus and be granted true repentance,” ICC requested in its report.
India ranks 10 on the US Open Doors Watch List 2021 of the top 50 countries where Christians are persecuted.