“I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.”
Christ and the apostles have taught us to help the weak. In India this includes multitudes of needy impoverished children. The parents of these impoverished children struggle desperately to provide even the most basic necessities of life. Good Samaritan has set up Community Child Care Centers in both Sikkanampatti and Pottiapuram villages to help meet these needs.
A Community Child Care Center is a simple building (constructed for approximately $5,000 U.S. dollars) that has an open area, a small kitchen, and a storage closet. Typically these centers operate six days a week providing the children with two meals per day – one in the morning and one in the late afternoon. Each day the children are tutored on their school assignments and taught Scripture. They return home to be with their parents for the night.
In the current political climate in India, it is becoming increasingly difficult for Good Samaritan to operate orphanages. The Indian political party presently in power is founded on extreme Hinduism. This party is intent upon removing all religious and spiritual instruction except Hinduism from orphanages. This political party has also placed a number of burdensome and unnecessary regulations on orphanages. One of the great advantages of the Community Child Care Center is that the political agenda and regulations that limit the orphanages don’t apply. Another of the great benefits of the Community Child Care Center is that a many more children are able to be assisted at a much lower cost than a full-time orphanage.
The fruits of this pure-hearted ministry can be seen in many ways and one of those fruits in which we greatly rejoice is that most of the children and some of their parents attend worship services which are held at the centers every Sunday evening and led by the pastors of the local Primitive Baptist churches.
To provide a glimpse of the blessing these centers provide, here is a testimony from an American visitor to the Sikanampatti Community Child Care Center:
“This village is particularly impoverished. Many of the adults in the village have AIDS. Listening to the children in the child care center quote Psalm 34, 43, and 86 was an experience difficult to describe – absolutely one of the most rewarding and humbling experiences of my life. After the children recited scriptures and sang spiritual songs, preparations were made for an evening meal to be served. One young boy asked the blessing over the meal. In his prayer he said, ‘Lord, thank you for this work in this village. And may you bless it to be spread to many other villages as well!”
Currently, there are two community child care centers in Tamil Nadu:
Sikanampatti, serving 35 children
Pottiapuram, serving 46 children