St Oswald’s Helps
the Church in South India:
1997 we at St Oswald’s launched Project India, an appeal to build a
Transit Home for the homeless in the Diocese of Tirunelveli, South India. A
"Transit Home" is somewhere for the homeless to stay on a temporary
basis. Indian church members are then asked to sponsor these people so that they
can live in the community, thus making room for someone else in the Transit
Home. We started with a coffee morning, then we had the charity shop for 2
weeks, then Maybole Concert Party put on a show for us. The 1998 Diocesan Lent
Appeal was for our fund and generous donations were received from friends
throughout Scotland. Bit by bit the money came in and we reached our £25,000
On Thursday 6th
April, members of the congregation and clergy team met the Revd Anand Asir,
Provost of the Cathedral at Tirunelveli, and his wife, Jessie for lunch in Ayr.
Some of the money had already been sent to India, but at this lunch the balance
of the fund was presented to Revd Asir so that building work can continue. The
home is to be known as "St Oswald’s Centre", and will be dedicated
on 23rd May 2000. Canon Bertie Collie, whose vision inspired us to
launch the project, plans to attend the dedication.
Revd Asir, in
reply, thanked everyone for their efforts and told us a little about the work of
the church in South India. The cathedral at Tirunelveli has 2,000 communicants
every Sunday and they baptise about 20 people every month – Christian growth
on a scale that we in Scotland find hard to imagine.
Since the project
was launched in 1997, inflation has taken the total cost up to £29,000 to
finally finish the centre. The cathedral congregation in Tirunelveli have
pledged to raise £2,000 towards this sum, which means that £2,000 is still
outstanding. Revd Asir appealed to us to raise a further £2,000. To everyone
who has supported our fund raising efforts so far, a very big "Thank
You" – let’s see if we can find that final £2,000.