Contact: Taun Cortado, Gospel for Asia, 972-300-3120
UTTAR PRADESH, India, June 1 /Christian Newswire/ -- Anti-Christian extremists in Uttar Pradesh, India, have threatened to kill Gospel for Asia missionary Daya Marandi if he does not leave the area where he is currently ministering. The extremists have also made unspecified threats to harm about 60 people who worship at a GFA-affiliated church where Daya serves as pastor. The extremists are demanding that believers in the church denounce Christianity and return to their former religions.
GFA President Dr. K.P. Yohannan asks Christians around the world to pray earnestly for Daya and for the area in which he ministers.
"Please pray for this entire state of Uttar Pradesh. It has a population of about 150 million people and it is one of the most unreached states in all of India," Dr. Yohannan explained.
This incident leading to the death threat began when extremists learned that Daya was purchasing land on which to construct a church. The extremists tried to get the landowner to back out of the sale. They even tried to buy the land themselves so that Daya could not purchase it.
When their attempts to halt the land purchase failed, the extremists became angry and the situation escalated. They approached the pastor and demanded that everyone in his congregation turn away from Christianity and return to their former religions. At this same time, a local newspaper published an unflattering article about Daya.
Seeing that the pastor and the members of his church refused to budge, the extremists escalated their threats and told Daya they would kill him if he continued to minister in Uttar Pradesh.
Anti-Christian extremists also recently assaulted two other GFA missionaries working in Uttar Pradesh. The missionaries were able to escape from the extremists unharmed. Dr. Yohannan asks you to pray for these two men and that many people who heard the Gospel message that day will come to know Christ in spite of the opposition.
Gospel for Asia is a mission organization involved in evangelism and church planting in Asia's unreached regions. Currently Gospel for Asia supports more than 16,500 church planters in 10 countries. These missionaries have established about 30,000 churches among unreached villages and people groups. Gospel for Asia is also committed to training native missionaries. The organization's 54 Bible colleges are preparing thousands of students to become full-time church planters.