Ministering to the Untouchables
Untouchable. Imagine being labelled as impure and less than human on the day of your birth. You will most likely never be able to cast off this label, will never obtain a well-paying job, and will never be able to speak out against the injustice that you and your family experience, without exposing yourself to violence and hate crimes. In India, the caste system determines your worth before you are born and for many, they will always live at the bottom of this system because the bottom is where they ‘belong’.
The caste system was established in India over 3000 years ago, and is a system that is used to classify Hindu’s based on their past lives, and their duties. The caste system is divided into five categories; priests and teachers, warriors and rulers, farmers and merchants, labourers, and street and latrine cleaners. Currently, over 160 million people are labelled as ‘untouchable’ and are exposed to violence and discrimination. Although work is being done to reconcile the abuse that the untouchables have received since the caste system was put in place, many people in India still practice this system.
In our work in India, we minister to those who have been deemed as ‘untouchable.’ Imagine being raised to believe that you are unworthy of the ground that you occupy, and then being told that you are a son or daughter of Christ, the King of all kings! Men, women and children need to know that they are loved by Him and given His grace and His mercy, no matter where society has placed them within the system. We have shared how the Bible has transformed lives from the inside out, but it’s more than that. The Bible gives people a hope for the future, and helps them recognize their true worth. It is when we realize how loved we are, and our worth in Christ, that we can grow and walk confidently in Christ.