For those of you scoring at home, the Northern 'Burbs Babe returned home from India today, tired but healthy and full of stories. As I mentioned, she was doing some teacher training, but the group she was with did much more too. They were helping in some village medical clinic/screening work, seminars on hygiene and education, as well as some learning about issues faced by the Dalits.
I will be writing more about the Dalits in the near future, but suffice it to say this is a people group in need of our prayer. Many of the (hundreds of millions) Dalits are very open to the Gospel, and there are many now stepping out of the Hinduism that oppresses them, and into a faith that embraces them. This of course is dangerous for a couple of reasons, not the least of which is that some may be changing their faith as a matter of economic convenience rather than a real desire to follow Christ. And for every Gospel worker reaching out to help the Dalits, there are members of other faiths (esp. Buddhism and Islam) who are also trying to entice Dalits. Pray that these people above all else find the truth that can save them; and pray also for enforcement of laws intended to prevent their oppression so they can realize the same opportunities (economic and educational, as well as in matters of safety and protection) as other Indians.
The pictures my wife brought back reveal a beautiful people. To us mere mortals, the Dalits are truly the least of these. To God, they are so beloved that He sent His Son for them. I hope we can see them through God's eyes instead of our own.