1975
Rev. B.R. Hicks &
Rev. Beverly Robertson
In India
Sister Hicks Burden for
the Nation
and the People
of India
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Rev. Hicks vision for India became reality
Rev. Hicks traveled all over India with her daughter Rev. Beverly Robertson in 1975. Preaching in several locations without gaining a foothold in the country.
But she said that it was important to travel to other countries as God’s Servant if for no other reason, to walk through the land.
In one of those meetings there was a well-known Indian minister, Rev. Luke Yelchuri with an organization of about 150 churches. He was impressed by the
messages he heard but Rev. Hicks and her daughter departed without making contact to exchange addresses. This was long before the Internet and it was
almost impossible to locate people in other countries with a name only. So, he prayed they would reconnect, if it was God’s will in His time.
He sent his son Joseph to the US for training in a US Bible College and while there he visited a church near the campus, a Christ Gospel Church. Returning
home Joseph took copies of Rev. Hicks books for his father not knowing that this was the lady minister his Father had been praying to reconnect with for
years. When Elder Yelchuri saw the author’s name he danced for joy having found the teacher he had long sought. Some time later, prior to his death he
turned his organization over to his son Joseph, now Bishop Joseph Yelchuri. Over the past 40 years Christ Gospel India has grown to over 500 Churches on
the eastern coast.
Under Rev. Hicks close direction Christ Gospel Churches Intl. (CGCI) provided increasing financial support for our work in India. She became a Spiritual
Mother to Joseph and he became one of her many sons in the Lord. He stayed in her home many times fellowshipping with her and keeping her apprised of
all developments of his family, of the ministry in India and surrounding countries. She is now in the “Regions Beyond” she so often spoke of and one of our
other sons in the Lord, Rev. Allen Conway, now assumes her role as President of CGCI. He has asked me to explain to those here in person all those
watching on live stream a very grave need now facing our spiritual family in India.
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Covid-19 attacks India?
Since 1991 I have traveled to India over 30 times mostly for business. The first few visits I saw India from the widows of air-conditioned taxis and hotel rooms. Then after
receiving an invitation from Bishop Yelchuri, I traveled to Kakinada in Andhra Pradesh Province one of the poorer areas of this amazing country, now with 1.4 Billion
(18.5%) of the 7.6 Billion souls on earth, all living close to each other in a land mass 1/3 the size of the US.
With Bishop Yelchuri I was not looking out windows at the poor, I was in their grass huts with them, helping to distribute food and safe water in villages 10,000
inhabitants all living on dirt floors. I had traveled a lot in the third world before this experience and thought was accustomed to poverty, but rural India was shocking,
seeing desperate poverty up-close and personal with the humiliation that accompanies it. I have been drawn back many times over the years to preach and teach and
help in any way I could to alleviate the suffering of the poor.
When I first learned about Covid-19, knowing what I know about India, I could envision mountains of burning bodies all over the land. So close together with no
sanitation, with limited knowledge of the virus and how to protect themselves from it, with little medical care, it seemed to me that the most catastrophic disaster in
human history was on the horizon.
When last in India, I had dinner with the owner of one of factories my company imports from in Punjab near Pakistan. He is a wonderful Sikh man whose friendship I
treasure. We have had many long discussions on history, politics and religion over the years. I asked him what he thought of Modi, their controversial Prime Minister
known to be a decisive leader. He just smiled and said “You have Trump - we have Modi”
When Modi saw the threat of Covid-19 he ordered a complete shutdown in March. There was an immediate stay at home order and shut down of all non-essential
businesses. The actions taken in India were far more severe than in the US but Modi saw the hand writing on the wall. There may be 500 Million desperately poor in
India living on US$ 1 to 2 per day. More than the population of the US and Canada. They were at great risk along with the rest of the population.
Imagine you are a father in India with a wife and two children. You like hundreds of millions of others work in the fields or sweat shops for US$ 2 to 3 per day. You rent a
small plot of ground large enough to build a grass hut when your own hands. The rest of your income goes to food and clothing. True hand to mouth existence. No
health insurance, not unemployment, not food stamps. Then the Leader of your Country enacts a law stating that you can not leave your grass hut, your children who go
to the Christ Gospel free primary school must stay with you and your wife in your hut. You have no electricity, no plumbing, obviously no heat or AC and it is 90 to 120
degrees F in the summer and in the 50 degree F in winter months at night. The Covid bullet may have been dodged but tonight hundreds of millions in India are starving!
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Covid-19 Statistics top four Countries in the World
in order of confirmed cases
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www.christgospelindia.org
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How has Covid 19 affected the Christ Gospel
Brotherhood in India?
You can visit Christ Gospel India.org to view the various drop-down sections to gain a better understanding of the programs we offer for the
poor in India. In fact we are not a officially a religious organization in India but rather a Humanitarian Relief Society. By taking this route we
avoid all taxes on funds transferred from the US to India. We are audited annually by the Central and Provincial Governments to confirm that
68% of all incoming funds go to humanitarian programs. The remaining 32% can go towards administration. As a donor this means that if you
choose to contribute to any of these programs all admin cost is already covered by CGCI, so if you direct US$ 100.00 to a program or special
need in India 100% is sent and spent on that need.
In cities we have larger churches we have members who are doctors, lawyers, engineers, factory managers etc. or in other words middle-
class members. But in all of our churches we also have the very poor who earn their living doing manual labor of various types. This shut down
may have saved the lives of hundreds of millions in India, but the poor are struggling to survive with out being able to work and earn money
for food for the next few days. We may have 40,000 brothers and sisters in India but the majority are very poor and need support to bridge this
gap until the Pandemic is past and the country reopens again.
I communicate with my dear life-long friend every few days by email. Understanding the great needs of the poor in India I felt that my wife
Renee and I should contribute $ 1,000 to feed the poor. I donated this to CGCI to gain the tax deduction and the funds are now purchasing food
for the poor in India. Bishop Yelchuri confirms that with US$ 2.00 we can feed a family for one day. This means that:
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US$ 2.00 feeds a family for one day
$ 1,000 feeds 20 families for 25 days
$ 500 feeds 10 families for 25 days
$ 250 feeds 5 families for 25 days
$ 100 feeds 2 families for 25 days
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Preparation – If you announce free food is available in this type of desperate situation thousands will rush in an riots can occur. Our workers go to nearby areas and
qualify families in need and then give them a numbered coupon showing the location to come on a specific date and time to receive their food supplies. Bishop
Yelchuri holding the sign with his team of volunteer workers.
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Another Relief
Team being
dispatched from
one of our 10
District Elder’s
Homes about 90
minutes drive
from Kakinada
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Prayer before heading out to
distribute food.
Note, this is one of our
Sewing training centers.
Ladies training to become
seamstresses are now
making masks for distribution
to workers and to the poor.
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Food Distribution
to Sri Lanka
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Live Stream in India during shut down
90 Million understand Telgu the language of Andra Pradesh Province. Bishop Yelchuri has been preaching
regularly online during the shut down so the Saints can attend church virtually in their homes.
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True
Religion
Thank
you for
your love
and
giving