A Christian couple was punished for refusing to denounce their faith. The penalty for their faith is beyond cruel and resulted in one man becoming a martyr.
In the small village of Kubuaa, India, Bartu Urawn and his wife were told to deny Christ and return to their indigenous religion.
When the Urawns refused, they were forced to spent a cold winter night in a freezing pond from 5 p.m. to 10 a.m. with groups of villagers watching to ensure the couple didn’t leave the frigid water.
The couple’s son, Beneswar Urawn, told the Global Christian News: “All throughout the night, they were in the cold water shivering, and I along with 15-20 villagers were witness to the brutality.
“The villagers kept asking my father if he is ready to forsake Christ and return to the Sarna fold. He reiterated every time, “I will not deny Christ…I will continue to believe till my last breath.”
The Urawns gave their lives to God a decade ago but when the villagers realized it wasn’t a phase, they began ostracizing, threatening and assaulting the family.
The couple had suffered several abuses from their fellow villagers for three years before they were forced to stand in the pond up to their necks.
They were told to return to the “Religion of the Holy Woods,” which requires blood sacrifices to their most powerful god and other, smaller, ritual services to lesser gods.
Villagers once sacrificed an animal, which they forced down Urawn’s throat and forced him to drink fermented liquor.
Other times, the village assaulted Urawn and his wife while a mob attacked Beneswar, his wife and his younger brother. They were locked in their own home for hours and the source of the family’s drinking water was polluted.
Other times the family was told demons would never let them live. As the couple stood in the pond, their hands were tied behind their backs in hopes they would drown but they were protected.
Morningstar News, reported the elder Urawn fell ill and suffered two bouts of paralysis after the freezing water caused nerve damage.
Every time he began to recover, he would become ill again until he finally passed away.
Beneswar attempted to bury his father but villagers stood around the body with wooden sticks and were ready to attack anyone who attempted to bury him but the next day four Christians came with Beneswar and carried the body 6 miles for a funeral service on government land.
When the Christians returned to the village, they were told to prepare a meal for the villagers in accordance to a Sarna Dharam ritual. Beneswar refused, saying they would offer a prayer meeting instead.
His life was threatened so Beneswar and his family finally fled and found refuge in a new village over 20 miles away.
Relatives attempted to tell police of the atrocity of Beneswar’s father’s death but officials ruled it a “natural death” and suggested peace talks between the villagers and Christian minorities. The family returned home but continue to live in fear.
Please pray for Christian minorities. Pray for their safety and strength to share the Gospel of the Lord.