Story from Rupandehi under Integral Development
Bhim Bahadur Rana, 54, from Nawalparasi, pastors a small congregation in Khasuwa village. Bhim tells us about a very sad mishap in his village.
“Last year, one student was swept away in the river when he tried to wade through the swollen waters. The suspension bridge constructed a decade ago had collapsed when the water level rose. Even after such a shocking accident we kept doing the same old mundane work, as if we had heard nothing.” recounts Bhim.
He was troubled and wanted to do something about it. But, he believed the bridge should be fixed by the government and hesitated to take any action. Bhim explains, "We learnt that the mission of the church spins through social as well as spiritual spheres. Our journey in integral mission has made us realise we no longer have to wait for someone to care for our needs. So we decided to do something before we let one more student drown."
Bhim has been involved in Sangsangai for the last two years as a facilitator where he has been teaching about the ways the church can serve the holistic needs of the community. "We offered to volunteer our resources, time and skills to repair the bridge. Some of us brought wooden planks, nails and a few volunteered as carpenters. One thing led to another and in no time we completed the task." shares Bhim, pointing proudly to the repaired bridge.
Bhim's bridge story has spread through the village and people who use it every day can only thank him for making life so easy again. This has strengthened Bhim's relationship with the local authorities. The local government has acknowledged his leadership and has also provided some funds for Bhim's church. They have used this grant to bolster their worship centre.