Helping a family member become a follower of Jesus is super special, even if it is from a distance. Sweta Balloo is a disciple in the ICOC in East London (UK), and she had to be content with watching her mother Manoo Narroo’s baptism in Mauritius via Zoom.
God is not limited by time or space and, thanks to technology, nor are his children. Sweta’s mother studied the Bible over a period of three months. The disciples in London, Johannesburg (South Africa), Mauritius, and Bangalore (India) all helped. This team effort took place over Zoom, and Manoo impressed everyone with her humility and desire to know Jesus.
“December 6 was the most wonderful day of my life–seeing my mum baptized. I was anxious beforehand (with all the planning). But when everything was ready, I was overjoyed with happiness. Up until now, I was the only one saved in my family, so this means a lot to me,” Sweta said.
This story about love and unity started in March when the global COVID-19 pandemic restricted in-person meetings. There are only five disciples in Mauritius, so a small group of brothers and sisters in South Africa, England and Australia decided to form a virtual mission team to encourage them.
Coordinating a Bible discussion over five different time zones was no easy feat. But, the team managed to hold virtual Bible discussions twice a week–one at lunchtime and the second after dinnertime in Mauritius. Manoo faithfully attended both.
Manoo’s persnal Bible studies also presented a challenge. The sisters had to conduct the studies in English, have Manoo read the scriptures in French, and had translations in Creole (the home language in Mauritius). She also came from a Hindu background, and that’s where teacher Raghu Katharga assisted from Bangalore. “My mum appreciated the meetings and the teachings, and the chance to know the true living God better. She’s had to work hard and dig deep into the Bible to know more about him,” Sweta said.
The day of the baptism finally arrived. Organizing a baptism remotely took prayer, faith and fasting to make sure everyone was able to meet up and followed the COVID-19 regulations in Mauritius. Such was the enthusiasm that one sister, Marie-Therese, arranged for a taxi to pick up the disciples from their various homes across the island. At 80 years old, another sister, Mala, then helped to baptize Manoo.
From her home in London, Sweta, watched with pride, along with the rest of the virtual mission team, as her mother made Jesus Lord of her life.
“I’d like to thank all the sisters and the virtual team for all their hard work these past months. I also want to encourage everyone to find time to pray for their family members. God will do the rest,” Sweta said.