A Day of Rest in North India

Saturday, May 26, 2018
Moradabad, Uttar Pradesh, India
None of slept as well as we’d hoped last night, all woke early and didn’t sleep all the way through. But we felt rested enough in the morning. We had a western breakfast of fruit, eggs, toast, and coffee and enjoyed some quiet time until 12:30 when Jasbir arrived to take us to the family home and school of Yousef and Eugene, where we would spend the rest of the Sabbath. We went into the center of the town, were streets became very narrow and obstructed. We drove in carefully. It is Ramadan and this was a very Muslim neighborhood. In fact the city is overwhelmingly Muslim. Though the school’s neighborhood was not when it was founded.
Arriving at the house, Dave greeted everyone warmly and Marjolaine and I were introduced. I recognized the names and some faces from photos. We all went in to the living room and were invited to sit down. Cold soft drinks and water were served and we caught up on everyone’s news. We talked about our travel so far and answered some questions about the work of the Church. A delicious lunch was served: tandoori chicken, vegetables, lentils, rice, poppadum and chapatti. It was all very good. We continued talking as we ate, this little group usually only sees David Baker twice a year, and others at the Feast of Tabernacles, so conversation is precious.
When lunch was finished and cleaned up. We began our service with hymns, had a prayer, after which Dave gave some news and announced me for the sermon. I gave an update with many photos about what is happening in the French language region of the world. Some photos from French Africa are very striking and show the difficulties members face in that region. Even compared to other developing countries, life is particularly difficult in much of sub-Saharan Africa. We read through scriptures showing the Bible teaching that the world is currently under spiritual bondage to the adversary of God who is allowing this state of affairs only for a while, after which will  come a great liberation and freedom.
After the service we sat outside in the courtyard for a while and Eugene explained some more background. The family runs a school, on the grounds of their house. They have 300 students primary and secondary, most of whom are Muslim. In spite of this service their Muslim neighbors essentially won’t have anything to do with them, won’t even talk with them because they are Christians. For their own protection, their children cannot be allowed to go out and play with others. Still they told us, this school is a miracle. When they opened the school, they had no money at all, but with God’s blessing it has grown to its present size which provides a decent living to the whole family.  The future is uncertain, so they take one day at a time.
They had planned dinner for about 8:30, but the three of us weren’t sure we could stay awake that long. So Eugene kindly move up the hour until 7:00. We enjoyed another lovely meal: lamb biryani, fried chicken, fried okra, potatoes poppadum and chapatti. We very much appreciated the work that had gone into the preparation and Marjolaine and I very much enjoyed meeting the members of the small congregation.
Tomorrow we plan an early start to visit the Jim Corbett Tiger Reserve.

Photos & Videos



Thanks for the picture of Yousef, Eugene and the group there. What an amazing story that Yousef and Eugene operate a primary and secondary school in which most of the students are Muslims, yet outside of the school environment, there's no fellowship. The continuation of the school certainly is a blessing. How much everyone must enjoy seeing Dave and other visitors.