Varanasi is a city in the Uttar Pradesh state of northern India. As can be seen by the miles of ghats, temples, and shrines lining the river Ganges, Varanasi is the holiest site in Hinduism, drawing more than 2.5 million religious devotees yearly.
This ancient city dates back to the 11th century BC. Tradition says that Lord Shiva and his wife Parvati walked here at the beginning of time.
Approximately 250,000 Muslims reside here, almost 30% of the city’s population.
“I come from a high-caste family. I had heard about Jesus, but I had no interest in him at all.”
“One night, my wife suddenly woke up screaming, ‘Please save me; someone is trying to cut me and burn me.’ I was frightened and couldn’t figure out what to do. Soon her screams woke the whole village, and they came to our home.”
“We called the shamans to apply their healing powers, but nothing stopped the pain. The priest also came and could do nothing. We called a doctor, but after he examined her, he said my wife had no physical problem.”
“Someone suggested we call a pastor from a neighboring village. I resisted but had to find some way to relieve her pain. Within an hour, the pastor and another brother came and asked for permission to pray for her. I didn’t see how that could do any good, but I agreed to let them pray.”
“He prayed, and when he said ‘Amen,’ she immediately calmed down. All of the village, the shamans, and the priest saw this. That day I decided to follow Jesus. My wife and I now work together to bring peace to other families.”