Published: 12:47 GMT Daylight Time - Monday 09 May 2011
Housing persecuted Christians
Thousands of Christians in three South Asian countries have lost their homes. Living in squalid conditions, without proper homes or places to worship, they are vulnerable, despised and cannot help themselves.
Homeless Christians in Pakistan
“I have a dream in which I tell my friends, ‘This is my home that protects my family; it may be small but it is filled with God’s love and grace.’”
A pastor’s plea - Sri Lanka
“We lost all our belongings, and we also suffered many illnesses without any proper medical attention. We were living in a refugee camp till 2011. We have now moved back to our village with hope and vision to rebuild the ministry and make an impact for God. Land belonging to the church, which had a building, was destroyed in the war. As the church we will be grateful if this church could be rebuilt to serve the communities.”
Rosalina, a Christian girl from Orissa, India
“In July 2009, we had to return back to our village. We put up small tents with tarpaulin to stay in most unhygienic and unsafe condition… Only by the grace of God we are living and I praise and thank God.”
Click on the countries on the left for more information
At Christmas 2007, Hindu extremists entered the homes of their Christian neighbours telling them that they had to convert to Hinduism or leave. Many Christians were wounded or killed, unless they managed to escape into the jungle. Their houses and churches were burned down or rendered uninhabitable by the extremists. In August 2008 brutal attacks started again, continuing unabated for two months. At least 400 villages were “cleansed” of all Christians. Over 56,000 Christians were left homeless.
Following a housing dispute in which authorities reneged on their promise of providing land, more than 2,000 poor and vulnerable Christians became homeless in June 2009. They ended up living in tents along the centre of a highway with up to 20 people per tent. The only water supply ran beside an open pit latrine and waste dump. Two people died from the heat that first summer. In 2010 the government moved the families to a camp outside the city, but their tents were badly damaged by the devastating floods later that year.
The ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka that lasted more than 30 years has left the north and east districts of the country in a war-ravaged state: devastated land and vegetation, houses in ruins, and up to half a million people displaced and living in temporary camps. Since the war ended in May 2009 reconstruction work has begun, but many Christians are still without permanent homes. They meet together to worship in tents and sometimes under trees.
Can you or your church help provide a home?
With your support, Barnabas Aid can enable local Christian groups to provide proper houses and churches for these homeless Christians in South Asia.
Since Barnabas Aid began in 1993 we have built hundreds of homes and scores of churches, transforming the lives of needy Christians under pressure. Help us to keep helping!
Any gift, no matter how small, will help!
for simple, one-room house in Orissa, India (pictured). The overhanging roof creates a veranda for cooking.
builds a four-room house in Pakistan with a kitchen and bathroom with toilet/shower and electricity.
average cost for a basic house in Sri Lanka. Including indoor kitchen, toilet and water supply.
typical cost of a new church building in Sri Lanka, becoming beacons of hope in these broken communities.