INDIA: Young Pastor Found Dead in Andhra Pradesh


Bird Mod
The body of a 29-year-old pastor was found with stab wounds on 20 February in a canal in Krishna district of the southern state of Andhra Pradesh.

Pastor Goda Israel was found dead last Tuesday in a canal near his house in Pedapallparru village in the Gudivada area of the district.

Israel had worked independently in the area since graduating from Emmanuel Bible Institute of Emmanuel Mission International (EMI), in Rajasthan state's Kota district, in February 2003. The slain pastor, who is survived by his wife and small children, was overseeing 15 churches that he established in the region.

"Pastor Israel had earlier been threatened by Hindu extremists due to his involvement in the preaching of the gospel in the area, and he had no enmity with anyone," an EMI leader who requested anonymity told Compass. He added that persecution of Christians was common in Andhra Pradesh.

On 17 February, Israel went for his usual prayer meeting at a nearby village but did not return, the source said. Israel's family members went to the Gudivada police station to seek help, but officers declined to conduct a search.

"[Police] instead told them that he would come back soon and that there was nothing to worry about," the source said.

Inspector Venkat Rao confirmed that Israel was murdered. "We have filed a case under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code, and the autopsy report is awaited," he said.

Rao said he could not say what injuries Israel had suffered until the autopsy report was completed, but the EMI source said the pastor's body was found with stab wounds.

Asked if Hindu extremists were behind the killing, inspector Rao said that could not be known with certainty as the case was still under investigation.

"Once we have an initial report of the findings, we will make arrests," Rao said. "We assure you that the slain pastor and his family members will get justice."

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I'm A Work In Progress
The only justice this pastor and his family are truly going to get is when Jesus returns and the judgements of God begin.

Another soul under the alter.



Home with Jesus ... waiting for you all.
Dear Lord, please come quickly and end the martyrdom of your people...