Pastor Paul Gandham has ministered in a small village in the State of Andhra Pradesh, about 420 kilometres north of Chennai, for about 15 years. Until the Advent Christian Conference of India took the ministry under its wing in 2008, he had ministered as an independent pastor. Shortly after the ACCI made his ministry one of their out-of-Tamil Nadu-State outreach ministries, Yesuway Jeevan Mission also commenced supporting Pastor Gandham’s ministry financially as one of our ministry partners.
The ministry is now known as the Advent Christian Church, Adda Road Village, Usumraripalli, Kanigiri, Andhra Pradesh, but we refer to it as Adda Road – for obvious reasons!
The area is a rural, very poor area, known in India as a “backward area” and the people who attend the church are mainly subsistence farmers and their families. The congregation has grown to approximately 40 families (about 120 to 130 people) and they worship in a small, open sided church building which although cramped for Sunday services and several weekday activities is a vibrant witness to the love of God evident in the lives of the members.
Through Pastor Gandham’s ministry the Gospel message has been taken to other villages in the area around Adda Road and an increasing number of families are now attending from these villages. There are about 50 children attending the many activities and ministries that are aimed specifically at children – a Vacation Bible School program is again planned for the summer school holidays in May.
We rejoice with Pastor Gandham and his members at the news that recently 12 persons were baptised and accepted into the membership of the church.
A generous donor from Chennai made it possible for the church to purchase an “auto” – an auto-rickshaw – which is used, as only Indians can use a vehicle (see picture at left below) – to transport adults and children to services and activities. Recently, to use Pastor Gandham’s words, the auto “unexpectedly fell down” and was badly damaged although there were no injuries suffered by the occupants at the time.(see picture at right below)
By God’s grace and because of a generous donation from a supporter in New Zealand, the auto has now been repaired and is back in service.
Yesuway Jeevan Mission allocated to Pastor Gandham an amount from the India portion of the 2011 Christmas in October gift sent from the United States. He recently wrote and expressed his thanks for this generous gift and advised us that he had used it to buy 30 Bibles for members and 10kg of cake for a Christmas celebration for all the members! Thank you from Pastor Gandham and his believers to all who gave so generously to the Christmas in October appeal.
Will you please pray regularly for the Adda Road outreach – at this time the only Advent Christian outreach in the State of Andhra Pradesh. Please pray especially for Pastor Paul Gandham and his family, seeking the Lord’s blessing and provision for them as they serve the Lord so faithfully. As you pray, please pray for the 12 members who were recently baptised, praying that they will grow in grace and in the knowledge of their Saviour.