FINALLY, here are some of the nicer pictures off my real camera. One thing that immediately strikes the eye about India are the vivid colors – bright blue and pink houses, gorgeous clothing especially on women.
More sidesaddle scooter riding.As the traffic becomes more terrifying, the drivers become more nonchalant.
Here are a couple of pictures of the charming couple who shared our train compartment on the way to Nellore. Blundering westerners that we are, we had the right seats only in the wrong car. Nevertheless this couple and their son cheerfully made room for us.
A woman looking wistfully into the night from her sleeper compartment.
Driving to a church we stopped for fuel at a truck stop. Out in back there were some long-haul truckers indulging in the refreshing Indian custom of the “bucket bath” (look it up).
A night service at Chagollu. Receiving honors from the pastor.
Janice teaching the Sunday school children to sing “This Little Light of Mine.” Beside having a good voice and lots of enthusiasm, Janice has the advantage of still looking neat when it’s 95 degrees and muggy (unlike Ed and me).
On the way to a noon service in Oguru. Even working women in India wear beautiful sarees.
Janice attracts a little boy with candy. His friend ran away.
Beautiful church interior in Oguru. People sit gracefully crosslegged on the floor and wait for the service to start. Usually there are hymns (in Indian style music) broadcast over a loudspeaker to attract visitors. The church is nearly always full by the time worship begins.
Preaching in Oguru.
Individual prayer time after worship. Praying for a child with fever.
Ed offers prayer for an elderly Christian.
Praying for a young man who wants God’s help to do well in school. There is a tremendous emphasis on education in India, and I received this prayer request time and again.
Night service outdoors in Mallavaram.
We arrive at the CLCI compound in Nidubrolu.
The compound borders a canal, handy for washing clothes and babies!
The children greeted us with flower petals, handfulls of which seemed to find their way down my shirt and pants.
Greeting the elderly Pastor V.S. Benjamin. It is the first time I have met him in 28 years serving on the Kinship Committee. A great honor.
Pastor Benjamin speaks at the welcoming ceremony.
Janice with the women of the mission, to her right and left are Nireekshana’s wife and Jyothi’s wife, respectively.
A view from the second story of the Mission House.
New pictures were taken of all the children in our care at the orphanage.
The women helped round them up!
View from the courtyard of the compound.
Night service at Machavarram. Ed prays with the parents of two young children. The father was somewhat overcome. I was to get a taste of that myself a few moments later.
I prayed with several children concerning their education and heath, and obeying their parents. No problem.
Suddenly, however, a woman appeared with her young daughter. “Please pray for her, Pastor. She’s mentally disabled.” That of course made me think of our own dear daughter Jane, and I found I couldn’t get any words out. Some tough guy! Jyothi had to take that one for me!
Sunday service at Pastor Isaiah’s church at Mannava. Praying for an elderly believer. The young man on my left was member who had good English; he would listen to their requests and translate for me.
Receiving honors from Pastor Isaiah.
Sister Janice being honored.
The Sunday school children singing a very elaborate song about Jonah and the great fish – including many gestures!
A young churchgoer. These kids have the hugest eyes.
Jyothi in his Sunday best.
Our Sunday afternoon jaunt to the Bay of Bengal. Cyclone Hudhud was just coming ashore to the north, far enough away not to threaten us, but close enough to cause high waves and close the beach to swimming. Ed insisted on wading, though, and promptly blew out a flipflop.
Three young men lounge against a fishing boat. Omnipresent cows in background. That is, they’re present everywhere except on the restaurant menu.
Greeting Pastor V.S. Benjamin on Monday morning.
The seminary chapel / classroom.
Me lecturing on the differences between the Lutheran and Reformed doctrine.
Ed lecturing on the home life of Martin Luther.
On the way back to the hotel I was riding in the way back jumpseat of the jeep. I noticed some feathers sticking out on the floor, and Janice told me it was a dead chicken. Which was half true, for soon thereafter I heard some clucking from under my seat. It’s alive! But not for long. Alas, the next day Jyothi told us we were eating it for our noon meal!
Pastor Benjamin needs plenty of rest these days.
The view from the Mission House roof. Lush, flat country as far as the eye can see.
We made a visit to Guntur and met Nireekshana’s charming family.
More unexpected sights on the road. Here’s a pedal rickshaw loaded with propane tanks. I’ve watched enough episodes of McGyver to know where this is going.
Students, faculty and guests pose for a picture on the roof of the Mission House.
“Everybody’s got a water buffalo. Yours is fast but mine is slow.”
Luggage on the platform, waiting for our train back to Chennai.
Muslim men on the platform at Bapatla.
A family waiting patiently for their train.
After returning to Chennai, I finally met the faithful driver, Kumar!