“That individual told me that it is a church building,” Tannishtha says, “and [in] there Christians worship God, and they pray for sick and demon-possessed people to release them from the bondage of evil spirits.”
Thinking of her family, she went to the church where the pastor and believers prayed for her family to be freed from the dark powers attacking them—and the Lord completely delivered them. After being relieved of their trials, Tannishtha and her family opened their hearts to Jesus Christ. Had Tannishtha come a few years earlier, however, she wouldn’t have found that church building—or deliverance.
Pastor Benjamin shares his memories of when his congregation didn’t have a building of its own:
GFA: What struggles did you face leading a church without a church building?
Pastor Benjamin: While I was in a rented house, there was only one room and no other room to conduct Sunday school separately. Sometimes when I started to conduct Sunday school in a rented house, the Sunday church services would end late, and the house owner did not wish to hear the noise and voices of children and believers again and again in his house. …
I was refused many times from conducting church services and asked to vacate my room immediately [and hold services in] other places. Because of this, many believers did not find the exact worship centers, and there was no identification of the church in the [community].
GFA: Please expand on the problems you faced having to move your location from week to week.
Pastor Benjamin: People would backslide and stop coming to the church services. … Sometimes, even some guests and outsiders wanted to visit our church, but sadly I used to have to tell them, “I do not have yet one full-fledged church building.” Sometimes people wanted to come and stay in the church and pray continuously, but there was no church.
GFA: How did the community react to your situation?
Pastor Benjamin: A few people looked down at and insulted some believers when they were coming to the fellowships. … They used to look down on and hate us.
GFA: How then did you come to have a building?
Pastor Benjamin: I was praying for a church building for eight years, and as a result of it, God heard my prayer and gave us a pretty and amazing church building.
GFA: What does the building mean for your congregation and for the community?
Pastor Benjamin: Some people used to oppose the church building construction work. … After the work was over, some people … stopped [making accusations against the] believers and the church building. Yes, some villagers had a receptive mind to listen to the Gospel. …
After having a church building, my ability to share Christ’s love has rapidly increased, and there is a large number of people from far, distant places visiting the church and its worship services whom I feel I’ve never known, seen or met. Having seen these types of things, the believers of my church are encouraged and inspired to share the Good News. … The believers are proud of their religious place where, without much reluctance or hindrance, people can identify themselves to others as a true follower of Jesus Christ.