During this holy Easter season, we reflect on the great sacrifice of Jesus and the victory in His resurrection. We take time to reflect and rejoice on the beautiful impact of Christ’s sacrifice that unites us with fellow believers around the world.
Just as many pastors and speakers prepare to lead celebration services this weekend, our Indian pastors are preparing to do the same. We want to introduce you to one of them, Pastor Veparti Davidu. He has been a faithful servant for the Kingdom for over 30 years. In fact, his son and daughter have also embraced this calling and are bible college graduates themselves.
Pastor Veparti has experienced great suffering and great joy as he has fulfilled the calling God laid upon his heart. He began his ministry in a place called Durgada, an area home to a large Hindu militant group, known to persecute Christians. Pastor Davidu shared that he has had his church burned, has been kicked out of his village and has been beaten over 100 times. Despite these horrific trials, he keeps returning to honor his calling and his church continues to grow. What started out as a community of 10 is now a community of over 300, with 50 youth in attendance.
God has also poured out miracles on Pastor Davidu. At one point he was diagnosed with diabetes and was experiencing kidney failure. While he was in hospital fighting for his life, all the Harvest India community came together to pray for him. As a result, he was completely healed, much to the amazement of his doctors. This incident has caused revival throughout his village. The congregation of his church are coming together to build a new, bigger church and they have committed to raise half the funds themselves. In a part of India where 95% of it’s population live below the poverty line, this is a beautiful demonstration of their faith and devotion to spreading the Gospel.
During this Easter season, as we rejoice in our Lord’s resurrection, remember the pastors in India and pray for them as they too bring the Good News to our brothers and sisters around the world.
If you would like to support the men and women who work tirelessly for the Kingdom like Pastor Davidu, please click here.
Meet the beautiful Anjali. She is 10 years old and is being cared for at our ROCKHARBOR children’s home in Tenali.
Her impoverished parents could no longer provide for her and entrusted her to Harvest India. She currently attends Quarry School (our free public school for all poor and Dalit children in the area) where she is thriving. She loves to study and hopes to become a software engineer when she is older. Her favorite activities are making crafts and playing with her friends that live in the children’s home with her. We are blessed to be able to provide an education for this child and to demonstrate Christ’s love for her each day.
Ramana is 6 years old and lives in our Vemuru children’s home. Her sweet face is matched by her beautiful spirit and temperament. After her parents died from AIDS and her relatives couldn’t care for her any longer, Harvest India intervened to offer her a home where she could thrive.
She is very shy but loves to sing, play games like jump rope with her best friend Tiputarao. Her care takers at the Vemuru home pray that she will be a doctor someday to help heal the sick and dying for the glory of God.
When V Balaram was 6, his world was changed forever. He lost both of his parents- his father to illness and his mother to grief as she was never able to recover from the loss of her husband. His uncle, with no resources to provide care or an education for V Balaram, heard about the opportunities provided by Harvest India.
Once again he had to endure upheaval and change in his life but thankfully, for the last time. He can remain in the safety and security of the ROCKHARBOR children’s home until he is ready for college. He expresses gratitude that he is able to receive an education, especially in math. His favorite part of each day is the evening time when he and the other children get to play in the safety of our 13 acre campus in Tenali, where the ROCKHARBOR children’s home is located.
As an infant, G Sudha Babu endured a loss no child should have to bear. He and his sister lost both their parents to AIDS. India is home to the world’s third largest population suffering from HIV/AIDS.
Six years ago some neighbors in his village brought them to the love and safety of one of our children’s homes. When asked what his life is like now, he shared, “I love to dance and play with my friends. My favorite class is science and I would like to be a police officer when I am older.” He also asked that people would pray for him and for his future.
These are just a few of the beautiful lives Harvest India is blessed to care for each day throughout the state of Andhra Pradesh. We strive to provide a loving, Christ centered environment for over 1300 children- all as special and unique as these. Thank you to everyone who stands behind these lives through prayer and financial support.
Harvest India has been blessed for the past decades by men, women and children coming to visit and serve alongside of us here in India. We know that many of your stories get shared with close friends and family, but we would love to hear too. For those of you who have stood behind the work of Harvest India for years or to the thousands of you who have traveled to India, please share with us and others.
Here are a few thoughts to inspire you:
How have you seen God move through Harvest India?
How have you been impacted as a result of Harvest India?
Tell us a story about a person or experience that changed you?
By telling your story, you are inspiring others and encouraging our staff. Take a moment and consider that your story matters.
Click below on “comment” and share your story with us.
In January 2012, David Trotter and Shawn Scheinoha arrived in India with mission to document the lives of orphaned children living on the streets of India. With over 31 million orphans in India according to UNICEF, David and Shawn arrived with a simple plan of searching for real-life examples of kids who have been abandoned. What they didn’t expect was to be warmly welcomed into the ‘family’ of children and allowed to capture a behind-the-scenes look at life through the eyes of the orphan.
During an initial trip to work alongside Harvest India in December of 2004, David and Shawn were immediately drawn in by the striking eyes of unaccompanied children living in urban slums and remote villages. These eyes see and experience a life that is radically different than our own. Since that day, they’ve continued to invest their time and financial resources to give these children a future beyond life on the streets. With the release of the documentary, their deepest desire is that thousands of people will…
Be drawn attention to the plight of abandoned and orphaned children in India.
Be inspired to take compassionate action on behalf of children in need.
As David and Shawn developed relationships with each of the kids, they were inspired to do more than just tell their stories. They saw the need, and they had to take action. Without hesitation, Suresh Kumar and Harvest India opened their arms to a ‘family’ of children that most seek to avoid. What transpires is both inspiring and heart-breaking.
Distributed by Word Films, MOTHER INDIA will be available in stores nationwide beginning April 2013. If your church or organization is interested in hosting a screening of the film as an introduction to Harvest India, contact us today for a complimentary DVD.
As Christmas approaches celebrations are taking place throughout the ministry. Many village churches in the area host Suresh and his team at various Christmas services. It is our joy to celebrate the season with these fellow believers. We also have the blessing of giving gifts of food and clothing to those we serve. We hope to present a new outfit to all of the children in our 26 homes, individuals with leprosy, those in our HIV/AIDs hospice, the elderly as well as many more who are abandoned and alone. We desire to demonstrate Christ’s compassion in this season as we remember that He came into this world in the most humble of circumstances.
We are thankful for all your support this year. Please enjoy this greeting from Suresh, and make sure to watch all the way through as he shares some holiday cheer!!
As Suresh and the entire Kumar family have returned to India to continue to work of the ministry, they are grateful for all they experienced this Summer. They were blessed by the time spent with friends and partners in California and Arizona. Mercy and Nancy’s first trip to Orange County a fun-filled experience and many special memories were made. Please continue to pray for the Kumars, and for all the meetings and conversations had this Summer. We are hopeful they will bear much fruit to bless the ministry in the years to come!
Celebrating our Student’s Success!
Another school year has come and gone for all the children in Harvest India’s care and once again our youth have excelled. We wanted to share a wonderful update of our student’s progress with you -our supporters who make all this possible.
74 of our children graduated from high school this year.
12 students graduated with honors and received scholarships to some of the most distinguished schools in the Andhra Pradesh area.
226 students graduated from Junior colleges and transitioned to higher education institutions such as nursing schools, Bible colleges and engineering schools.
Our President, Bishop Suresh Kumar, expressed pride in and excitement for these young lives he has been investing in on the ground in India. He said, “thank you to all our supporters for standing behind these lives for such a time as this. We love them and pray for blessings on their lives.”
These achievements would not have been possible without you who stand behind each one of our students in prayer and with your financial support. We are excited to watch these graduates soar as they are now assured of a future and a hope in Christ!
How You Can Help
With your gift of just $35 a month we can continue to change young lives in India. Your financial support provides food, shelter, education, the love of Christ and so much more. If you have not already, please consider becoming part of these wonderful success stories by sponsoring a space. Click Here to Give
Suresh Kumar (and his entire family – Christina, David, Mercy, and Nancy) will be spending the Summer in California and Arizona as they connect with supporting churches. Join us at an upcoming church service, and be sure to attend one of the two Advance Screenings of MOTHER INDIA: Life Through the Eyes of the Orphan, a documentary featuring the ministry of Harvest India.
Sunday, June 3rd – Grace Fellowship, Tehachapi, CA
Wednesday, June 6th – MOTHER INDIA: Life Through the Eyes of the Orphan
ROCKHARBOR, Costa Mesa, CA – 7pm – get free tickets
Friday, June 8th – MOTHER INDIA: Life Through the Eyes of the Orphan
Newport Mesa Church, Costa Mesa, CA – 7pm – get free tickets
Sunday, June 10th – The Garden, Long Beach, CA – 9am and 11am
Saturday, June 15th – ROCKHARBOR, Costa Mesa, CA – 6pm Sunday, June 16th – ROCKHARBOR, Costa Mesa, CA – 9am, 11am, 7pm, 9pm
Sunday, July 1st - Cornerstone, Chandler, AZ – 9am, 10:30am, 11:55am, 5pm
Have Suresh share with your church or group! Contact Anita Barry, Harvest India USA Administrator, at 949-701-9296 or email@example.com.
In a village church in Bhattiprolu, Andhra Pradesh emerges a story that shows the unique abilities that Harvest India continues to utilize in standing behind the lives of thousands. While much of our ministry is to the downtrodden and neglected, Harvest India has growing opportunities to provide jobs to youth and middle aged nationals who are rising into a place of dignity and hope and making change possible for their families and their lives. On a recent trip to Bhattiprolu, a village where Harvest India supports a local church, runs a satellite bible college and educates 850+ women at K.S.K. Intermediate and Degree College, we gathered to join the local church in Sunday Service. At the beginning of each Sunday Service the congregation in Bhattiprolu gathers to worship God and hear His word through teaching. After worship, the congregation has some time to share praises for the ways God has met their needs and answered their prayers in the week past. During this time of sharing we met Vijaya Kumari. Vijay Kumari is a woman in her early 30’s who has been a member of the church in Bhattiprolu for as long as she can remember. Her mother, Sujatha, became a believer when she was 6, after visiting Sunday school with some of her Christian friends. She accepted Jesus into her heart and became the first Christian in her family. When her marriage was arranged, her parents insisted that she wed a Hindu man and shortly after her wedding Sujath became pregnant with Vijaya Kumari. When Vijaya Kumari was born her mother dedicated her to the Lord and began teaching her and instructing her in the ways of righteous living. As the time drew near for Vijaya Kumari to wed she was also betrothed to a Hindu man at the demand of her Hindu father.
Vijay Kumari and her husband bore two children, Santosh 8 and Naveena 11. Her husband worked hard as a mason, making barely enough to provide the basic necessities for the family. There was food on the table and enough money to educate their children with occasional excess income for some other needs. Everything seemed to be going as well as could be expected for a Christian woman and a strong Hindu man with two children struggling financially in rural India. Then in April of 2011 Vijaya Kumai’s husband became possessed by an evil spirit. This tormenting spirit made it difficult for him to work which tightened the family’s already small budget and caused even greater hardship in the home. Twice Vijaya Kumai’s husband attempted suicide, once jumping off of a building and another time overdosing on medication. Both attempts were unsuccessful and caused only high priced hospital bills. She encouraged him to come to church and receive prayer but he refused. Then after two months of severe financial struggle and no luck in his suicide attempts, Vijaya Kumari’s husband abandoned her and her two children in the night and has not returned for 6 months. Vijay Kumari struggled to get the family’s finances to a level that could continue to provide for her children’s education and provide for their needs. She looked to her parents, but her father refused to help because of Hindu beliefs that when hardships fall upon you it is a cursing of the gods and if another interferes with the gods plans it will likely bring hardships upon your own household. Her mother and Vijaya Kumari sought the prayer of the church. Sujatha knew of an opportunity at K.S.K. College that has recently opened up as a grounds keeper for the school, where she also works. Sujatha approached Suresh and shared her daughter’s hardship with him. He generously granted trial employment at the college run by Harvest India to Vijaya Kumari, since she had no prior experience. It has been one month since Vijaya Kumari began working at K.S.K. College. Her position has become permanent and she is doing a wonderful job maintaining the grounds.
As she shared, through tears of thankfulness and the heartbreak of her husband’s abandonment, Vijaya Kumari is finding healing in Jesus as she works at her new job, gathers with her family of believers, and prays steadfast prayers for her husband to submit his life to Jesus and return to their family. She praised God for the ways He turns our sadness into laughter and our struggles into times of great celebration as we grow in faith and deepen our understanding of the great plans God has for us.
Sujatha, Vijaya Kumari, Santosh and Naveena
2 Kings 6:17 “… O Lord, open his eyes and let him see!…”
Just days after Christmas this year, Harvest India welcomed a team from Rock Harbor church to serve and experience what God is doing in India. One of the focuses of their trip was a three day Vacation Bible School extravaganza! The team tirelessly prepared bible lessons, crafts and memory verses to ensure a wonderful time of learning, hilarity and fun was had by all.
Sally Blotzer, one of the Rock Harbor leaders shares, “this year, I was blessed with the opportunity to return to India, to reunite my feet with the dust that forever changed my life, and my heart with hundreds of familiar smiles, exclaiming “Akka! Akka!” (“Big sister! Big sister!”): a Kingdom moment, a taste of heaven, and an invitation into organized chaos for the next three days.
My responsibility for VBS was to coordinate the different stations. While doing my rounds during day two of VBS, a little guy, age ten, runs to me, proudly extending a picture of Joseph that he colored for his craft. My journey with Subini began by me extending my hand to him, guiding him to his proper station. Subini grabbed my hand, and asked “Akka, you Rock Harbor VBS leader?” To which I replied with an affirmative smile.
His eyes widened and he exclaimed “Wow!”
From there on he became my partner in making sure everyone else was in line.
We first walked from Bible memory to games, hand in hand we continued to the crafts area, to check on the mayhem occurring. As we were walking, I hear a sweet little voice singing “Jesus is my super hero, he’s my friend…”
When we arrived, I noticed a little boy laying down, separated from the rest of the group. I sat with the boy and asked if he was ill, the temperature of his forehead definitely spoke for itself. Subini quickly came to my rescue to translate. I asked the little boy if he wanted us to pray. After he said yes, I asked Subini if he would like to pray for him. Reluctantly, Subini told me his English was not very good—so I encouraged him to pray in Telugu. He immediately reached his hand out to me, wrapped my Chuni scarf around my head, and laid his hand on his friend, and prayed.
As we go on to check on Bible memory, Subini and I notice another little boy, lying in the back. We walk over and, once again, I invite him to pray for this boy. However, this time, we were joined by about ten other Dalit children—lifting up their brother in prayer.
I cannot tell you the beauty that my ears have been captivated by in listening to those prayers. We read in Proverbs 15:29 that God hears the prayers of the righteous. To imagine the smile on our Heavenly Father’s face as he watched his precious boy lifting up other children simply strips me of all words. What a sacred, sovereign, delightful moment this was—with a lasting impact on my heart.
As I was talking to one of the Harvest India workers, she informed me that Subini, before he was orphaned, was raised by a Muslim father. His mother passed away when he was young, and then he lost his father. Subini’s faith is a living testimony to God’s work at the Harvest India Children’s Home. His love for the Lord shines in his radiant smile, his songs of praise, and his reverence in prayer. I am thankful that through the partnership of Harvest India and Rock Harbor, Subini gets to experience a life based on a foundation of Christ’s love.”