Indian Church Grows Amid Massive Persecution And COVID-19

India student
A student in Nirvana School in India participates in classwork using school computers. |

Indian churches continue to grow amid the ongoing massive persecution, and even in spite of COVID-19, reports say.

Churches in India showed remarkable growth during the COVID-19 lockdowns. Reports revealed that all across the country, more people are turning to Christ in spite of the massive persecution. House churches are getting filled with Gospel-hungry believers.

Reports from Mission Network News' church planting partners in India show how God continues to accelerate the growth of His church and strengthen the body of Christ. Although the country ranks as number 10 among the most dangerous places for Christians to live in based on the persecution believers face there, figures revealed that the faithful are willing to face the risk to stand up for their faith.

"During 2020 - the COVID year - they've planted more churches than all the 25 years of their ministry work there," said David Reeves, President, and CEO of unfoldingWord, MNN reported.

One of the church planting partners shared how they saw the number of people turning to God dramatically increased. The source said the believers resorted to praying for one another and for others from a distance during the lockdown as they cannot come together for in-person services.

The Christians who prayed for others used the technology as a platform to pray for one another. They used telephone lines and WhatsApp to do a follow-up on those people they prayed for, resulting in 100,000 new Christian conversions during the lockdown period alone.

When the government slightly loosened the restriction, the believers finally got the chance to visit the places that they prayed for.

"They estimate that churches adopted about 50,000 villages during the lockdown, and 25% now have an "opening" for the Gospel - some believers, a small house church, etc," the church planting partner added citing that the figures were so much more than they could have done before the pandemic.

Even the lack of access to the Bible translated in their own native language did not stop the Christians in India from pursuing the truth of the word of God.

"They're tired of waiting [for a translation]; they're trying to do it themselves, and we provide tools [and] resources to help them," the unfoldingWord president said.

Reeves explained that the efforts they do now involve plenty of risks in a country such as India where Christian persecution continues to grow yet they are determined. He added that risks will not stop the church from moving forward.

He further compared the present challenges that Christians in India face and how they keep going to the first-century church when people diligently fought for their faith. 

Finally, the UnfoldingWorld CEO urged the public to pray for them to have the courage to continue. He also appealed to the people to ask for God's protection and to have the tools and resources that they will need along this journey.

Previous reports revealed that India was among the countries that believers across the globe prayed for in an online event. Believers from different parts of the globe called out to pray for the strength and protection of the brethren in China, India, Nigeria, as well as other countries where they face persecution because of their beliefs.