by Elder Jeff Harris
Salem City, Tamil Nadu India — God blessed our busy day yesterday (Nov. 16, 2014) as we gathered for the constitution of Salem Primitive Baptist Church in Salem City. We began our first service promptly at 9:30 a.m.through singing three Tamil gospel songs and then several English hymns. We had a congregation of approximately 75 to 80 people. I preached on the “Church That Jesus Built” (Matt.16:18), pointing out it’s character, conduct and continuity. God blessed the one-hour message, which Bro. Nelson did a very good job translating.
In the second service, they asked me to moderate the constitution service and appointment of officers of the church. In a very well organized and orderly way, Bro. Nelson was installed as the official pastor and three men were appointed as deacons. Bro. James was asked to do both the constitution prayer and charge to the church, which were unanimously approved by the congregation of 30 adult members. They formally signed the Church Covenant and Articles of Faith. There were also eight other adults that presented themselves to the church for admission as members. Their baptisms will take place next weekend, as the rented facility has no baptistery. We concluded about 1:30. One of the deacons treated us to this meal, after which we went to his house for fellowship and a bible study. There, we were able to answer questions and present a more full scope of our doctrine, which was received with rejoicing. Following the study, we then sat down for a festive supper of lamb, chicken, rice and chepati which is a fruit salad with ice cream! That was a treat, and I am afraid we ate too much. We wobbled out of their door about 8:30 and drove back to the compound, falling asleep on the way. Bro. James and I prayed together, then both quickly went to our beds, rejoicing in the goodness of the Lord toward us on this historic day. We have been working and praying for a PB church in Salem for many years, and now the Lord has answered that prayer. May God bless the body to grow and bring the gospel to that city’s 2 million inhabitants, most of which are Muslim or Hindu. That translates into more than 200 mosques and more than 3,000 Hindu Temples. Please hold up this city in your prayers.