#ShortNews: 11 years after India’s deadly anti-Christian violence, faith still growing

It was on August 25, 2008, that hell broke loose on the Christians of Kandhamal, with Hindu extremists attacking them for the August 23 murder of Hindu leader Swami ‎Lakshmanananda Saraswati, even though Maoist rebels ‎claimed the assassination.

In the rioting by radical Hindus that went on unabated for months, some 100 people were killed, thousands were injured, 300 churches and 6,000 homes were destroyed, and 50,000 people were displaced, with many forced to hide in nearby forests where many died of hunger and snakebites.

Eleven years on, Archbishop John Barwa of Cuttack-Bhubaneswar, whose jurisdiction includes Kandhamal, says the faith of Christians is growing, the people have no fear, and “they can face any challenge with faith and trusting in God”.  “They burnt our people, our houses, our churches, but the fire of the Holy Spirit filled our people with a burning love for Jesus and the Church,” Archbishop Barwa told Crux.

Read full story: https://www.vaticannews.va/en/church/news/2019-08/india-kandhamal-odisha-christian-persecution-anniversary-barwa-m.html

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