Notice

Those who have awaited the final relase of Jerris Bullard's ouline on "The History of Christianity in India" from his lecture on that subject need to be aware of a Delay in Publication of this document.  It will be made available in a month so look for it around July 15,2017.

Thank you for your patience.

 

img 1200660277 830 lgDear Brethren

Greetings in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. On Sunday, December 26, the day after Christmas one of the world’s deadliest natural disasters of all time struck Southeast Asia. Tsunami! We knew the word before December 26th. Now we know the full force of the event. Never again will it be just a word. Now it is a range of terrible emotions. And never again will we view the ocean in the quiet, serene way we once did

 

On December 26th at 6:30 A.M. I awakened to learn that one of the strongest earthquakes in over forty years had occurred in the Indian Ocean near Indonesia. It was feared at that time that over 1,000 people had died on a nearby island. By 5:00 P.M. the number of dead had risen to over 11,000. The world was not prepared to learn the full extent of the earthquake-Tsunami! And as I pen these words we have learned that the dead flow number over 145,000 with the expectation that that number may double in a short time with terrifying diseases to kill the survivors from the Tsunami! May God be merciful to spare a suffering people who have already endured more than anyone should have to bear in a lifetime.

Emails and telephone calls from American brethren have come at a furious rate. Your love, concerns, and desires to help our poor unfortunate brethren in India touch me. We have thousands of brethren all along the complete length of the eastern coast of India. We have also received numerous emails and phone calls from Indian brethren who have been on the scene. In the limited space we have I wish to share a few of their emails with you that you may sense their urgency, their pain, and their generosity.

Brother S. Jacob who is from Penumadam, which is about 20 miles from the seacoast, wrote the following:


Dear Brother Jerris, Greetings in the name of Jesus Christ, Brother, Hope you already saw the effect of sunami (earthquake in Indonesia,) to India in News papers and TV channels. Particularly our area (Narsapuram & Perupalem surrounding areas) damaged very hardly. So many people died due to this earthquake, so many people loosed their kids & so many Kids loosed their parents. Crores of Rupees property loosed due to this Sunami. At present so many people suffering with lack of food, clothes, and need Medical support. Yesterday I conducted medical camp there with my co-workers and family members. I distributed drinking water, Rice, dresses & sarees to that needy people. Actually we need more for distributed to all the needy people, but we have given to a few people only due to lack of funds. Please pray to God for these people, and pray for God to provide their needs.

Brother, One more bad incident happened to my close relatives family, one person from their family doing jobs in Andanion, He died due to Sunami. In the same way so may people died. We need your prayers and support for them.

Brother P. Daniel, who lives in Pamidipadu about 30 miles from the ocean, went on Sunday afternoon (the 26th) to see the situation among our brethren. He reported his findings as follows:


Respected brother I regret to inform about dangerous and terrible See Earthquake. Just I have ready to send a mail to you with my work progress and with in few hours we have faced a terrible and dangerous Sea earthquake. Due to this sea Earthquake more see water came out and covered major coastal areas and took back many things. We have many congregations are there in Prakassm, Nellore and Guntur districts at coastal areas. Our more brothers and Christina peoples are loosed their ho uses, food grains, and other things and belongings. And almost houses are spoiled in that have flow of seawater. Our congregation brothers and sisters are in great suffered with lack of food and shelter.

Respected brother, now they have no shelter, sufficient food and clothes, because they loosed everything. Now they have been in serious and helpless position. From 2 days I have visited some areas, when 1 have visited they are crying loudly, I have pray for them. Now, I did not able to collect full information. Because, more and more dead bodies coming out from see still now also. Now, to my knowledge we did not loss any brothers and sisters. Please pray for that Sea Earthquake effected brothers and sisters and peoples. I will send another mail with full details. In previous we did not face this type of Sea Earthquake. Please pray for this situation. I am waiting for you kind reply.

 

Two days later, on a second and more extensive three-day tour of the coastal villages to see brethren, Daniel offered the following assessment:


Respected brother, I have visited that all our brothers and sisters who are effected and suffered. For visit this all congregations I took one rent car for 3 days. Due to this tsunami our coastal area brothers and sisters loosed everything and their belongings. Now they have been in help less position. They have no sufficient food, clothes, and shelter. I have visited all congregations in Prakassm and Nellore districts coastal areas. When I observed they loss everything and up to now they are been in help less position. At that time they are requesting me about some help. Then I told with them “I can explain with my brothers in USA and I will try to do some help. They need sonic help from us. Your help is essential for them as soon as possible. Thousands of people are loosed their lives due to this tsunami. But we loss only one brother, he slept in the lord due to this effect. That preacher name whom you baptized, is A. Kotaiah. In previous years all ready you have visited that Bro. A. Kotaiah ‘s congregation, at that time one night you sleep in car due seawater came across our path on that day. Sir you remember this situation. Recently I received my regular support check from you. But I spent this entire amount for this effected brothers and sisters for each family I gave a small gift to save them temporarily. Approximately I have visited 40 congregations. In this 50 congregation approximately 419 families were effected. All these families are also very poor. Their occupation is fisher mans.

 



OUR IMMEDIATE PLANS

We are very involved by telephone and email with a number of the Indian brethren who are on the scene. There have only been 3 brethren who are known to have perished, Of course, as more brethren report to us, we fear there will be more, but as of December 31, 2004 this is the news from about 100 congregations. Many brethren lost their houses, huts, all household goods, food, and clothing. Thousands of water wells are ruined due to the pressure of the Tsunami forcing salt water into the delicate balance that existed between the water tables of the seabed and that of the fresh water table. The poor farmers along the coastal area have lost their fertile farmlands, which are now covered with salty seawater. Also on many farms the topsoil has been washed away. There is an urgent need to help our brethren.

 

Juanita and I will be departing for India on January 11, 2005. Immediately, on arrival, I will send four teams (which will already have been formed before we arrive) composed of our brethren to at least 80 congregations in as many villages. We will need not less than $16,000 dollars immediately. How much we will eventually need is anyone’s guess at this time. We have only $5,000 on hand to purchase clothing, food and bottled water for our brethren. All clothing and commodities may be purchased in Hyderabad where there is no shortage of anything. No doubt, we will need more funds, but I am counting on other missionaries on our American team to help. Any funds you or your congregation may supply will be used for the purpose of benevolence and a strict accounting will be provided.

 

I have had a great amount of experience with disaster relief since 1978 in helping Indian, Bangladeshi, and Nepali brethren. There have been numerous, widespread floods, an earthquake which destroyed over fifty villages with around 60,000 people killed, and innumerable cyclones (hurricanes) which have caused so much damage, crop losses, and deaths. In all these crises you responded generously to help alleviate the survivor s terrible suffering. God has been praised as the one who has provided the relief. As a result the Gospel has been preached and accepted by a gracious people. I am confident that this will also be the situation in this most challenging of all natural disasters in our lifetime. Thank you for your fellowship in all aspects of this great work.


A BRIEF REFLECTION ON 2004

Please allow me to say a few words about our work during 2004. First, we appealed to you through several newsletters to assist us financially. All of the needs we suggested were fully funded. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts for this. Each and every gift big and small was a blessing and brought thanksgivings with praise to God (2 Corinthians 9:10-12). Secondly, God blessed our work in the “white unto harvest” fields of India with a record breaking number of souls baptized.

 

2004 GOD GAVE THE INCREASE

 

MEETINGS

BAPTIZED

NEW CONGREGATIONS

DENOMINATIONAL PREACHERS BAPTIZED

83,940

206,611

4,737

1,457


We pray that the New Year, 2005, will also provide us with a new record in the number of souls baptized. Your prayers and financial fellowship will be essential in accomplishing this for the glory of God. Remember it is God who adds (Acts 2:41). However, it is our task and privilege to plant and water (1 Corinthians 3:6).

Brethren, it is obvious we need a large amount of money as soon as possible. Your benevolent funds will be used to provide the following items, which can all, be purchased in India:

 

Shirts

$2.70

1 pot and l pan

$3.50

Pants

$3.25

Bottled water per case of 12-2 liter bottles

$2.80

Sarees

$3.50

Rice—enough for 1 family of 5 to have one meal per day for 1 week

$9.00

Bed Sheets

$2.30

Bibles

$1.85



We have immediate requests for $16,000 worth of goods. Please be generous and help all you can as soon as you can. Funds may be sent to help in this benevolent situation to the Manassas Church of Christ India Fund. Please note on your check memo line: Tsunami Relief.

Grace and Peace,

Jerris N. Bullard, Missionary

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