One of our training regions in India is in West Bengal. Here we partner with the West Bengal Christian Network (WBCN), an organisation representing many Christian leaders across the region. It is incredibly inspiring to work with them. Their staff are passionate about ministry, and they are a constant source of encouragement to us. We collaborate to provide the training. West Bengal Christian Network identify those most in need of training in the region. They also provide the facilities, food and lodging for those we train. We, in turn, provide the teachers and teaching materials. This means we can add value to our training, achieving so much more than we could on our own.
One of our schools within the region is in the heart of the Sundarbans national park, a beautiful mangrove forest on the Ganges delta. Designated a UNESCO heritage site, it is a popular tourist attraction famous for its tigers, dolphins, lush jungle scenes and sumptuous resorts.
Within the Sundarbans delta there are around 155 Islands where thousands of people live. The only way people can get around is by boat; the region is famous for its “barges” – the main method of travel.
Ranganga is one of the Islands at the furthest edge of the Delta, where it meets the Bay of Bengal. Here we’ve been training 13 Christian leaders who are working in this remote part of the country. From Ranganga the pastors are able to easily access the other remote southern Islands, “hard to access” from the mainland.
Pastor Tarun Ghosh is one of the graduate pastors from the Ranganga centre. He and his congregation have been evangelising in villages across the southern delta, and many people have come to Christ as a result. From this he has been able to disciple about thirty new believers who are attending his church. And he is now helping to train other church leaders in the region.
Tarun reports that one of the main challenges they face in this remote part of the world is human trafficking. In fact, the problem has been described as ‘epidemic’. Traffickers approach children promising them jobs. However, once they have accepted they are trafficked abroad either as household servants or as part of the sex trade. As a result, Tarun and his congregation run education and awareness projects across the region, helping to “push-back” against sex trafficking.
Please pray for Tarun as he carries out this vital ministry. Pray against the work of traffickers, that God would frustrate their plans.