India Trip January 2024

Dear all,
I am sorry I haven’t updated anything through these days. It has been quite a busy trip so far, and as I have more responsibility, I find it so difficult even to make any phone calls either.

Pastors Stephen and Gavin arrived at Hyderabad and on the same night we traveled to Kakinada from Secunderabad on an AC 1st Class 😱. (It was the first time for me to enter into a 1st Class compartment). We were 4 in the coupe, it was a great experience for me. However, pastor Stephen and Gavin couldn’t sleep due to the jerkings of the train and my great snoring 😂.

Church Dedication at Anaparthy

The next day morning we arrived at Kakinada 2 hours late (didn’t surprise me, sometimes 😂 Indian trains run late). We quickly freshened and got to Anaparthy, where we had our first church dedication service. Pastor Stephen opened the church and dedicated the church, and pastor Gavin delivered a dedication message. Pastors M. P. Georgekutty (my father), K. C. Joseph, Johnson George, and Vesely Varghese gave short messages and felicitations. Pastor Joshua Raju, his wife Geetha, and their 2 children
minister there.

Evening Prayer at Rameswaram

That evening we went to Rameswaram where pastor Shalem Raj is ministering. Because the church is too small, we held the meeting on the ground beside the church. Pastor Stephen and Pastor K C Joseph ministered there. Pastor Shalem has already started building a new church there. Last year we helped Shalem to build a church at another ministry place of him, Thimmapuram.

Sunday Service at Katrenikona

The next day, as it was Sunday, we went to Katrenikona, 65 km away from Kakinada. Pastor Daniel is ministering here. His wife has had a uterus removal surgery 2 months back. This was the first Sunday she was coming to church. He had invited members of churches from all three ministry Areas – Bikkavaripeta, Powerpeta, and Katrenikona as a Thanksgiving service. Pastor Gavin and Pastor Vesely ministered here. Pastor K C Joseph couldn’t travel as he was sick the whole night last night and on Sunday. Pastor Daniel has built a beautiful church building at Bikkavaripeta which cost around 35 lakhs (£35,000). He has raised the entire fund by himself, except for a £6000 debt.

After service, we came back to Kakinada, also to make sure Pastor Joseph was doing well. Pastors Stephen, Gavin, Vesely and I went for a walk that evening. Crossing the road in the busy Kakinada roads was new fun for Stephen and Gavin. As were invited to have dinner with Pastor Kiran at their home, Pastors Gavin, Stephen, Vesely and I went to their residence. Hephzibah and their elder daughter Jemima welcomed us and we had a great time with them.

Church Dedication at Dontamuru

Monday morning, went to Dhontamuru, where pastor Prasanna and family ministers, to dedicate the newly constructed church building. Joseph and Gavin shared from the Word, and Stephen dedicated the church. After having lunch we went to Nallamilli where pastor Premkumar (brother of Pastor Prasanna) ministers. Gavin and Stephen were given a room at the opposite house – members of the church, Georgekutty, and Joseph rested at the manse (parsonage / faith home), Vesely, Kiran, Johnson and I rested at the church hall.

Pastors Georgekutty, Vesely, Kiran and I then went to see Pastor Moshe’s ministry place. Knowing that we were coming a few members of the church had gathered. We conducted a small meeting there. Then we went to see his house and his mother confirmed of partitioning family home and other things. So, we found a potential church building location.

Pastor Joseph left for Hyderabad by train in the evening. He reached home the next day morning.

Evening Prayer Meeting at Nallamilli

Later that evening, we had a prayer meeting at Nallamilli church, where pastor Premkumar ministers. Pastor Stephen and Pastor Vesely shared the Word of God. Prayer for people. After spending some time with the family members, we left for Kakinada. We reached the rooms late at 11.15 pm.

Ministers’ and family meeting

The next day morning, we had our Pastors and family meeting. It was held at the newly constructed Gollaprolu church, which was dedicated last year. Pastor Prem Sagar ministers here. After worship time, pastors and families introduced themselves and shared the locations of their ministry. In the morning session, Pastor Gavin shared on leadership. After having lunch we quickly gathered for the afternoon session, where pastor Stephen shared the importance of families in the ministry. After this session, ministers went on to complete their monthly business session with Pastor Kiran Kumar.

That evening, while we were returning from Gollaprolu, we also visited Pittapuram church. This is also another mission station of Pastor Prem Sagar. He demolished his failing old building and started building a new one with some expansion. We prayed for that.

After freshening up, we went for dinner at a local restaurant. And had a little bit of fun and was back in the rooms and rested.

Baptism and Church Dedication at Apanapalem

Next day Morning, we headed to Apanapalem, to dedicate the newly constructed church building, a ministry place of Pastor Amos. On the way, we visited Thimmapuram, a ministry location of Pastor Shalem Raj. The church building at Thimmapuram was built last year and dedicated. After meeting and praying for local believers gathered, we left for Apanapalem.

3 believers were getting baptised. Pastor Vesely has led the baptism service in the river beside the church. 2 men baptised were not physically able. It was such a wonderful experience.

Pastor Stephen cut the ribbon and entered the church. Pastor Gavin gave the dedication message. Pastor Stephen dedicated the church and led the blessing prayer. Pastors Johnson and Vesely also brought greetings. Pastor Georgekutty gave the concluding remarks. We prayed for the members and visitors individually.

After lunch, we went to Muthugulapeta, a small village – the entire village (50 families) part of the church – a mission station of Pastor Williams. We prayed for the villagers, Pastor Williams, and his daughter Ramya.

Evening Meeting at Velanka

Then we headed for some time of rest. After the rest, we headed off to Velanka, a mission station of Pastor Jeeva Ratna. The small congregation in Velanka was being conducted in a rented house. However, the owner has asked them to leave with no notice due to the pressure of anti-Christian mobs. They were forced to conduct a couple of weeks of meetings in a local farm building. Later on, a local council member asked them to build a church on government land, where they built a temporary building. We joined the meeting held in that building. Pastor Gavin preached, and Pastor Vesely and pastor Johnson have brought greetings. It was an extremely long day. We were all tired and returned room.

Church Dedication at Peddapudi

The next day morning, we came for our 4th church dedication service. Pastor Kiran Kumar, our co-ordinator has built a church at Peddapudi. Pastor Stephen shared the dedication message. He also gave a wonderful gospel message, 4 people responded to the call and accepted Jesus as their personal Saviour. Pastor Gavin dedicated the church to the glory of the Lord and did the Blessing prayer.

This was the last program of our mission trip. We and home and rested. We are heading off to Kerala for a couple of days before Pastor Gavin and Stephen are heading back to Dublin.

Thank you so much for your prayers. Please continue to pray for True Light Ministries, Pastors, churches, believers, etc.