Dawn of the ministry in India
In the Year 1997 Pr. Anton visited the Srilankan refugee camp in Uchapatti, Madurai and there he saw a small boy named Stephen who had fell of from the tree and had a big bandage around his hand and was suffering without enough medical assistance. The ‘root’ was then planted in his heart to start the ministry and to help the people suffering at this place. Thus the ministry was formed under the name “Grace Foundation Ministries“ and was inaugurated by Rev.P.S. Rajamani and Pr. Anton on February 12, 1997. The beginning was started with the children ministry, which took place in a small hut. At the same time the education help for 10 Srilankan refugee children started through the help of TCF members Switzerland.
Following the children ministry, the small hut was expanded on October 1997 and Sunday services started to take place. In the beginning, only few people came to the church. Gospel meetings took place in the year 1997 and 2000 under the guidance of Pr. Anton and through which we came to know many people. New people started to get baptized and became the partakers of the church. Children ministry also started to grow. The growth of the church made few people jealous.
Period of tribulation
In the year 2001 due to the problems that took place in the church, police department announced that no church ministries or pastors were allowed inside the refugee camp. Irrespective of the situation, the church didn’t loose its hope in God and started to gather outside the refugee camp in some schools, damaged buildings and also in rented house. Amidst of it, we saw many things against the ministry, still God’s hand was upholding the ministry.
In 2001 by the grace of the Lord and through the help of TCF members Switzerland we were able to buy a plot near the Srilankan refugee camp for Grace foundation ministries in Madurai, India. In April 2002, the church worship was started in a palm thatched roof hut, dedicated and opened by Pr. Anton. Worshiping in a land owned by the church brought big satisfaction and joy for the people who were seeking to worship God and kept wandering here and there.
Madurai G.C.A (Grace Christian Assembly) building
Church building construction in Madurai was started in 2003 and on March 19th 2004 Pr. Rajamani and Pr. Anton dedicated the church building followed by musical ministry for two days. In the year 2005, the director of MEOS Rev. Martin Saegesser took part in our worship and encouraged people through his message. Along with him Pr. Anton joined with his family and also Coonoor church members.
The Madurai ministry which was started for Srilankan refugees is now taking place among Indians as well. In the beginning we had only Srilankans in the worship but now Indian people are also joining the worship. Amidst of all the problems that satan is bringing against the church, the Lord is helping us graciously to overcome the problems and to do the ministry in a good way. People have been selected as leaders to maintain and help in church activities. Here Pr. Mariadass with his family is doing the ministry.
In the neighboring villages, different kind of ministries such as handouts, movie, medical and gospel are taking place. Many have been relieved from the burden of sin, curse and they have not only become partakers of the church but are also helping in the ministry. God is doing magnificent things in the church and with his people. His blessings are bountiful….
Coonoor church which was under the head of Pr. Noah has joined “Grace foundations” and started to function under it. Following this, with the help of TCF members a own plot was bought for the coonoor church. The church is involved in children, youth and house ministries. Also here when the church faced problems, the Lord was leading rightly. Pr. Noah with his family is ministering at this place.
Church at Udumalaipettai
In May 2007, through our ministry the church was started at Udumalaipettai in the Tirupur district. It was hard to do the ministry without having an own building at this part where casteism is too high and we prayed to God for a church building. At the right time, through GCA church God helped us to buy a land and to build the church. In addition, through GCA church God helped us to build a house for the minister. Pr. Selvaraj with his family is ministering at this place.