In April 2010, the interns from the School of Ministry travelled to India to spend two weeks working with the drug rehabilitation charity Asha Bhawan (literally translated "House of Hope"). The interns worked with the children of former addicts and assisted ex-addicts in their rehabilitation, working alongside them in projects that included selling clothes, running chicken and pig farms and assisting in outreach to drug communities.
The trip gave those involved the chance to live and work alongside recovering addicts, hearing their stories of addiction and redemption and seeing the transformation that God had worked in them. It gave an opportunity to see the realities of poverty in a different cultural context along with the vivid consequences of sin. It also forced the interns to rely on God for protection, provision and wisdom in situations far beyond their comfort zone.
Returning home after such a short time was a challenge, because it seemed like we had to leave just as we had started to build deep relationships in our communities. The trip raised a number of questions about the nature of whole-life mission, about our reaction to poverty and the way in which the gospel relates to culture. However, as a chance to see the truth of what God is capable of doing in the world and to meet people who have encountered Christ and will never be the same as a result, it was a life-changing trip.
Highlights included a 27-hour crosscountry train journey; riding through Delhi in a lightning storm in the back of a flatbed truck; working alongside the staff at the children’s house, leading worship in a number of Indian churches; and eating entire meals made up of nothing but chicken necks…