The bass sound hits before you get to the front porch. It’s loud and pulsing, the kind of beat felt in your chest. The Indian day is warm, any lingering coolness the morning brought dissipates quickly as the orange sun rises higher. At the front door, a varied collection of shoes, flip-flops, flats, and Velcro sandals are sprayed across the marble floor like a giant rainbow – evidence of the vast array of personalities greeting you on the other side of the door.
At the slap of the screen door in the large room, you are greeted with accented voices wishing you a pleasant morning.
“Good morning, sister!”
“Morning, good sister!”
Small hands reach out, doe-like brown eyes glisten as smiles transform faces. Slowly, everyone takes their positions. Boys and men to the left of the room, women and girls to the right. Bright pinks and yellows and turquoises adorn thin figures. Boys with gelled down hair and girls with thick, black, rope-like braids pull for attention.
Amos Vankey, the campus pastor, takes the microphone and wishes children and visitors a good morning. “Now, it is time for . . . ACTION SONGS!” The children squeal in excitement and jump to their feet. The bass of the music returns. On the projection screen, boys and girls lead worship songs with actions to accompany. As the action songs end, everyone sits down. Each girl gracefully places her feet to her right and flows her dress around her. The boys sit cross-legged and reach for their Bibles.
The morning passes quickly, children standing bravely to share testimonies of exams passed and positive conversations with family members about their faith. Slower, softer worship music comes on and the boys, one by one, raise up on their knees, lifting their hands with abandon. Each girl slowly covers her head with a thin, decorated scarf and closes her eyes as they sing loudly to Jesus. The songs’ recognizable in tune, but not language. On the other side of the world, there’s a beautiful scene going on, children known and loved by a Maker, offering worship.
Spiritual development is one way Back2Back offers care for today and hope for tomorrow to children around the world. Church services, each unique to their culture, are a regular part of a child’s life across each site.
India’s church services offer a sensory rich experience every Sunday morning, and the children who call campus home have a powerful worship time. Children, like eleven-year old Sandya, whose biological parents practice Hinduism, have come to know the God who died for them is worth telling others about, and demonstrate a quiet poise and confidence in their identities as Christ-followers.
Sandya regularly asks for prayer for her family during the testimony part of church services, and is growing in her boldness of faith.
Amos leads the staff in playing an important role in the spiritual maturation of the children on campus. Amos accepted Jesus in 2000 just after completing tenth grade. “When I felt called to ministry, it was children God put on my heart,” shared Amos. It is this passion and obedience to Jesus which allows Amos to share his love for God with the children.
During the weekdays, while the children are at school, the caregivers’ voices rise steadily in their mother tongue to worship Jesus. Before every dinner, the boys and girls lead prayer through song, and children like Pranay, (who came in 2016 when his parents’ whereabouts couldn’t be found,) pray palms up, offering and receiving from the Lord. Following, sharing, and worshiping Jesus isn’t just for Sundays, it is a way of life at the India Hope Campus.
Back2Back India is raising up believers in a country where Christianity makes up just 2.3% of the population. Join us in praying this assemblage of believers will grow to cause ripples in their own communities, through their shameless adoration of the King. If the children learn on the Back2Back campus how to worship, we can trust they have hope for their future, and we can be confident God is on the move in the India we love.