The battle for the millennium
Posted November 4, 2003
You guys must think I'm pathetic; that Bhosle-Srinivasan cooing borders along, "The meek don't inherit the earth, they get sent to concentration camps"! Come on, missionary position, cool; missionaries, not! I realised my faux pas when Raj gloated, "V, you've shot yourself in the foot again. They think you're beating up on me." High Priestess of Vigilance: "Huh?" "That essay hasn't been published yet, dummy!" High Priestess of Decorum: "Shit, shit, SHIT." Yup, that happened to be a line from Raj's article on conversion activities -- which also includes his thoughts on Kubrick's Eyes Wide Shut. He'd sent me the piece a month ago and I assumed it had already been uploaded...
So what do I rant on today, the Pope or the LOP? What with such an articulate Leader of the Opposition in Parliament, it's a crime to focus on religion. But I'm forced towards fundietva, thanks to Krishna Prasad's "brotherhoodlums," and my anonymous grace in Dilip D'Souza's column. The thrust of both essays is the same. D'Souza: "Can Hinduism, 850 million strong Hinduism, really be in danger from foolish booklets circulated to 15 million Baptists?" Krishna Prasad: "...if anybody has a better explanation why a party which claims the backing of 600 or 700 or 800 million Hindus feels a threat from a community which is less than a tenth of its size, I'd like to hear it."
Interesting... Are the boys suggesting that because the Christian population is 18.8 million or 2.3% (Census of India, 1991), Hindus need not be wary of conversion drives...? Ok! Time to get those number-processing brain cells into top gear, all two of them! Ponder this: The population of Bombay, by the 1991 census, is 10 million. In March, the home ministry informed us that 351 murders took place in Bombay during 1998. Meaning, 0.00351% of Mumbaikars are murderers -- assuming that one person did not kill several, or, only Mumbaikars committed the crimes. 0.00351%... So, should we argue that a debate on policing is unrequired...? Do we advise Mumbaikars to sleep with their doors and windows open since the odds of their being murdered are slim?? Is it logical?
It's easy to play with figures and make them talk for you. I don't need crap about what I should or shouldn't fear. The factor that alarms me is not the 2.3% Christians -- for the average citizen does not have proselytisation on his mind. It's the no-holds-barred campaign waged by foreign *and* Indian missionaries -- targeting the soft sections of Hindus. YES, Hindus. Not "animists." Look at these census figures over a span of 30 years -- the same that are used to tout the decrease in the Christian population:
Group Millions/Percentage Millions/Percentage Change
Hindus 366.5/83.5 672.5/82.8 - 0.7
Christians 10.7/2.4 18.8/2.3 - 0.1
And, here are the population stats of one-third of the country, from a report published by the Census Commissioner of India, Paper 1 of 1995 -- Religion, which gives a percentage break up on the basis of religion:
State Hindu Christian
1961 1991 1961 1991
Arun. Pradesh - - 37.0 - - 10. 2
Assam 71.3 67.1 2.4 3.3
MP 93.9 92.8 0.5 0.6
Manipur 61.6 57.6 19.4 34.1
Meghalaya 18.2 14.6 35.2 64.5
Nagaland 9.3 10.1 52.9 87.4
Orissa 97.5 94.6 1.1 2.1
Sikkim 66.6 68.3 1.7 3.3
Tamil Nadu 89.9 88.6 5.2 5.6
Tripura 76.0 86.5 0.8 1.6
Lakshadweep 1.0 4.5 0.2 1.1
How do the figures for Manipur, Meghalaya and Nagaland grab you? Why should any fundie relax for the next 50 years watching Christian numbers double -- at the cost of Hinduism? Why would anyone expect us to? Such a *dumb* question. For, that's precisely what everything that crawls out of the woodwork wants! Too, it's amusing to learn that I'm "threatened" by the Southern Baptists' booklet. Actually, none of us is bothered by the "500 million Christians in India by the end of the year 2000". Not I, nor the VHP. That's an ignominy pushed by orgs like AD 2000. But, that's only one group and does NOT represent entire Christendom -- which happens to be extremely patient and remarkably Machiavellian. Jesus can afford to wait... And therefore, it's high time Hindus shake butt.
There's no point in my stating that Christianity is on a crusade against Hinduism. I cede the floor to Vararuchi F Dalavai, Regional Coordinator: South Asia, AD 2000 & Beyond Movement (note that "Beyond"). He'll give you an idea of the deep study, the organisational planning and its results in India. Such facts are deliberately either kept hidden or brushed aside by D'Souza, Prasad & Co. After all, those who've worked for Outlook or those who are soo one with Pardhis, can't possibly be unaware of what's happening in our hinterlands:
"Though the presence of the Church in India dates back to AD 56, most of the growth of the Christian population occurred during the last 200 years when the Father of the Modern Missionary Movement, William Carey, set his feet on the shore of India. This growth was through a series of peoples movement in the 1970s... Revivals in South and North East India have become the cause for releasing an enormous indigenous missionary force and reviving local churches for missionary outreach. Indigenous missionary agencies increased spectacularly from 26 in 1972 to over 200 at present . This brought an increase in indigenous missionaries from 550 to 11,500... The growth of the charismatics is hard to measure for lack of statistics. Their growth has been remarkable during the last decade. Every day about 5,000 Christians are added to the 42 million in existence. About 30 congregations are added every week to the existing 150,000 congregations...
"There is an increasing awareness for networking and partnership. The AD 2000 Movement has instilled purpose in the body of Christ and church planting is now the chief activity of several denominations and mission agencies. Today, the AD 2000 Movement has become nationally accepted and every day it gains new momentum. More than 100 evangelistic agencies -- church and mission -- have adopted AD 2000 goals...
"Several other national networks have become involved since 1989. The most notable are Mission India 2000, Council on National Service, Indian Missions Association, and Final Thrust 5000. Regional networks like Vision 2000, in Salem, TN, have initiated partnership and generated enormous power for church planting at the grass roots level. They have mobilized 400 pastors from several denominations who have planted about 600 new churches within two years as a part of Vision 2000."
Does that at least begin to answer, "When (and why) did Christians replace Muslims as the pet-hate of the saffron brotherhoodlums," Krishna Prasad...? Or would you like to wait and have your scions be part of the minority (Hindu) community? That is, if they haven't willingly converted to Christianity? Elementary, dear Watson: The difference is that there is no large-scale and *organised* Islamic conversion crusade against Hindus. Do you get it? Or has intellectual thuggery so inundated you that the coining of words like "hate-mongrels" replaces rationale? It may earn you a lot of expensive junkets from your masters, but that's about all...
And you know why? I'll let Dalavai educate you: "These growing [conversion] movements were contested by the increasing force of Hindu militant movements which turned into a powerful political force. Discriminatory legislation against the Christians inhibits conversions and deprives converts from the untouchables to Government allocated jobs and funds. Visas for expatriate missionaries are hard to obtain and the foreign missionary force is aging and in rapid decline..."
See, unlike moi, you boys are Seasoned Reporters... So perhaps you assimilate all the news? Perhaps you've pondered the following charges? Perhaps you have the wherewithal to put two and two together...?
* In January 1998, the Adventist Development Relief Agency, a "humanitarian aid" branch of the Seventh Day Adventist Church, USA, was charged with violating the law in Nepal and Bhutan by carrying out illegal conversion activities. ADRA has 10 million members, is worth over $ 15.6 billion, and has the largest school system after the Catholics. The LA Times investigated it in August 1998: In just two years, ADRA received $ 85 million in federal cash, food and freight, plus millions more in foreign funds. "The aims of the overseas relief effort are no doubt righteous... But they are entrusted largely with US public funds to do it, and that is the nub of many of the problems... Along with that assistance have come serious questions... from accusations of corruption to complaints of unlawful proselytizing." The report quoted a relief worker in Africa: "If I'm going to build a road, I'm going to have it go past an Adventist church." It covered global problems with ADRA's activities and cited the org's Nepal exploits as just one example of "the pursuit of conversion goals under the guise of humanitarian aid."
* In September 1999, Angus Shaw of Associated Press reported from Zimbabwe about three American missionaries from the Indiana-based Harvestfield Ministries Pentecostal Church who were found guilty of possessing "weapons of war and trying to smuggle guns on board a civilian airliner." Judge Ismael Adam of the Harare high court ruled that they had violated security laws regarding unlicensed weapons and transport of arms. Gary Blanchard, John Dixon and Joseph Pettijohn "showed little emotion" at the verdict. WHY did these "men of God" need guns...?
* Jay Bhattacharjee wrote in The Pioneer of May 14: "Alan de Lastic, the Archbishop of Delhi and president of the Catholic Bishops Centre of India, has been active in the media and elsewhere in recent weeks, on the issue of the alleged attacks on the country's Christian community during the BJP regime... [He stated] 'The government that has fallen failed to protect the minorities adequately and effectively, in spite of all the promises'... The essential point is that de Lastic is not just an ordinary citizen, but is also the ecclesiastical head of an organised religion, Catholicism. It must be stressed that the Catholic Church in India (as in other countries), has virtually no autonomy on policy matters within the country and is obliged to follow the dictates of the Vatican. So, when de Lastic and his associates take up politically sensitive positions, they should, like Caesar's wife, be above suspicion." Are they...?
* Ashok Row Kavi wrote in The Afternoon of March 21: "The incredible news management in this campaign was first test-fired in L'Affaire Onion through Star TV, owned by Rupert Murdoch. I wonder if readers know that in February 1999, Murdoch was given an award for 'appreciation of services to the Roman Catholic Church' by the Vatican. What were these 'services'? In 1994, Murdoch had cut off the BBC from his satellite network because the BBC criticised China. Much before any bogus persecution of Christians was ever reported from India, Murdoch's Star News did not report even a mention of the Chinese government bull-dozing unauthorised Christian churches in China. So obviously, the Vatican's award was for other 'services.' These are reflected in the way Star News reported the so-called violence against Christians in India."
* Ruth Gledhill, in The Times of December 5, 1997: "As plans gather pace for the millennium celebrations, vigorous attempts to reclaim the event for Christianity are under way in the nation's churches... A team appointed by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York... is touring the country with the 'Millennium Roadshow,' urging clergy and churchgoers to use the occasion to proselytise. 'Two thousand is just a number with no content, no meaning, no significance, unless people are prepared to make some reference to Jesus of Nazareth,' the Rev Stephen Lynas said. Addressing an audience of clergy and laity, Mr Lynas said: 'The millennium is but two years and three weeks away. Yet one of the things we have yet to grasp is the question of whose millennium it is.' "
Look at the scale of co-operation among all kinds of Christians! Look at their ONE goal! What bloody "430 days"?! Hindutvawadis are girding up for the battle for the millennium!