Dohnavur Fellowship in India
One of our favorite times in India was our pilgrimage to Dohnavur Fellowship in Tamil Nadu. We traveled 5 hours by car to the southernmost tip of India. After a rest from our journey, we went to see where our dearly beloved, Amy Carmichael lived and worked unreservedly to save children from a life of prostitution and from being "married to the gods" in Hindu temples.Although we know her only through her writings and poems, when we envision the great 'cloud of witnesses' - she is there standing amongst many others who gave their lives unconditionally to rescue India's lost children. As we read her books our hearts became endeared to India, a nation halfway around the world. We were inspired to put music to her poems so we could sing to our Lord the way she did. We prayed for India's children because of the stories we read that were written by her. It was a dream of many of us to one day visit Dohnavur Fellowship, to walk where she walked, and to see the country this young Irish missionary conquered for Christ in the early 1900's. Our expectations were high as we traveled towards the place called Dohnavur Fellowship.
When we arrived at the gate we were led by a 73-year-old man on a bicycle to a comfortable sitting room to await our guide. He told us stories of his life growing up in Dohnavur. A woman dressed in a colorful blue and green sari appeared to show us around. As we followed the fragrance of the fresh bouquet of jasmine flowers in her hair, Anihala led us through paths surrounded by beautiful flower gardens. She told us of how she came to Dohnavur when she was only 5 days old. We saw the modestly ornate buildings decorated with thousands of wood-carved lotus blossoms. We met the children of Dohnavur who ran to greet us and sang songs for us. The red tiles reminded us of a little song from one of Amy's poems our children sing about happily scrubbing pots and red floor tiles as they sang praises to the Lord. We saw the place where she lay for 20 years, unable to get out of bed but still ministering to all who came to her and writing the many books we read today. We marveled at the fact that our guide, this woman of God named Anihala, and many others remain faithful to continue the work of one who passed from this life 57 years ago, Amy Carmichael.
As you will see in the photos, Amy took care to carve out a beautiful place in honor of our God, who is the Creator of all beauty. She provided a haven of rest for the weary, mistreated children of India otherwise doomed to a life of despair, with no hope of happiness. Many of these children have grown up to take the gospel to all parts of their native country, India. The work she began continues to care for the orphans of this day on 400 acres of land with 500 residents, 12 child nurseries, and a hospital.
For more information about the Dohnavur Fellowship click on the link below. Dohnavur Fellowship