India is in the fourth position among the nations with the rise of Covid 19 cases. As on 2nd July, 2020 there are 6,05,808 people affected and 17,850 people who died because of Covid 19. Fifty percent of those affected have recovered according to the official reports.
Central government has announced relaxation on lockdown situation. Domestic flights are operating in a minimal phase. The train service is partially on operation. Interstate travel is allowed with guidelines announced by the health department, specific for each state.
International flights are allowed to bring people who are stranded in many nations. Thousands of people are returning to India from Middle East and other countries. Some of these passengers are found to be carriers of the virus and it’s a matter of concern. The next few months are crucial for India due to the rise of cases on a daily basis.
During this time, India is also facing attacks and provocations from neighboring countries like China, Nepal and Pakistan.
Crisis Among the Believers
Few of our believers went to be with the Lord in the Middle East and in the USA due to Covid 19. An evangelist (C. K. Babykutty) was called home on 18th June 2020 from Mumbai. He was serving the Lord since 1988 in the slum areas of Mumbai and established two assemblies there. He is survived by his wife Mrs. Thangamma, who is a heart patient and is undergoing treatment for that. His daughter Blessy, who is married to an evangelist and they are serving the Lord in Kerala. And his son Blesson who is young, and he needs lot of grace to look after the ministry.
Other than the deaths due to Covid 19 there were many home calls due to age related issues and other sickness. As per Government protocol many of the family members were unable attend the funerals of their departed ones and it is a matter of great concern and sorrowful situation.
There are lot of restrictions for assembly gatherings and believers are going through difficult situations. Online programs are confined to cities since internet facilities are not available in many villages.
Students are affected the most due to the lockdown situation. Parents are frustrated as they have to manage everything from home. Many believers have lost their jobs and are going through financial crisis. Due to all these uncertainties counselling cases are increasing rapidly.
Ministries Among the Assemblies:
Lot of Zoom and internet-based programs which includes special meetings and Bible studies are happening every day among the Assemblies and Ministries. SBS is actively involved in producing online programs for children and Teens. Also, SBS leaders have been meeting for prayer every evening for an hour (9:30 to 10:30 PM) since the beginning of the lockdown.
Abraham Thomas Kochi