Christians and Hindus work together to refurbish Columbus home for Hindu priest

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Committed Christian Greg King never thought twice about reaching out to help his friends from the local Hindu Society of Southern Indiana requesting the assistance and expertise of the local Mission Columbus outreach from Asbury United Methodist Church.
Mission Columbus has worked on behalf of a broad range of groups — Brighter Days emergency shelter, United Way of Bartholomew County, and the Alliance for Substance Abuse Progress, to name a few — to rebuild or refurbish local structures for significant use via a team of volunteers that sometimes includes even active professionals donating their time or materials.
Mission Columbus just completed a summer-long project alongside the Hindu group to renovate the two-bedroom Hindu priest parsonage about 50 yards from the new, $1.
“There also was a lot of good humor,” said Steve Ferdon, Mission Columbus coordinator.
Ferdon’s perspective on helping the Hindus, which he admits was slightly outside of Mission Columbus’ usual circle of those needing a hand, was simple.

Christians and Hindus work together to refurbish Columbus home for Hindu priest

Call this a story of hammering out harmony between two different groups which found solid, common ground while under the same roof. Committed Christian Greg King never thought twice about reaching out to help his friends from the local Hindu Society of Southern Indiana requesting the assistance and expertise of the local Mission Columbus outreach from Asbury United Methodist Church. Mission Columbus has worked on behalf of a broad range of groups — Brighter Days emergency shelter, United Way of Bartholomew County, and the Alliance for Substance Abuse Progress, to name a few — to rebuild or refurbish local structures for significant use via a team of volunteers that sometimes includes even active professionals donating their time or materials. “When it really comes down to it,” King said, “I believe that part of our overall Christian mission … is to use our God-given gifts, time and talent for the help and betterment of our neighbors.” There you have it, faith friends. Mission Columbus just completed a summer-long project alongside the Hindu group to renovate the two-bedroom Hindu priest parsonage about 50 yards from the new, $1.2 million, 10,000-square-foot Sri Ganesh Mandir temple on Goeller Road on the west side of Columbus. King figures volunteers provided about $5,000 to $10,000 worth of work to replace flooring throughout, replace kitchen and bathroom cabinets and sinks, plus repair holes in the bathroom wall. He offered a special shout-out to pro cabinet installers Darren and Matt Buffo, who donated their expertise. The overall project dollar estimate is significant because the Hindus currently are paying off a Centra Credit Union loan for the temple that is expected to serve more than 500 local families and probably 2,000-plus local and visiting Hindus. Rajkumar Subramanian, the society’s communications director, mentioned that his peers were grateful for the help and the teamwork. “For a good cause, there always are people with golden hearts,” Subramanian said. “We are truly blessed to have such kind people within our community.” But the effort was more than just work. “There also was a lot of good humor,” said Steve Ferdon, Mission Columbus coordinator. Ferdon’s perspective on helping the Hindus, which he admits was slightly outside of Mission Columbus’ usual circle of those needing a hand, was simple. “It was a way for the Mission Columbus team to affirm to this group that ‘you are as much a part of the Columbus community as we are, and we are glad you are here,’” Ferdon said. “Finally and most importantly, it was part of living out the new command given by Jesus: “I am giving you a new command. You must love each other, just as I have loved you. If you love each other, everyone will know that you are my disciples.’” The Scripture is from John 13:34-35. A portion of Ferdon’s childhood was spent in Kuwait, where Christianity is a minority presence. He remembers seeing those such as Muslims who were passionate about their faith, and also passionate about doing good and helping others. “I eventually came to a point where I simply recognized that God speaks to people differently,” Ferdon said. He added that he likes the look of the parsonage now that the work is done. “The place” Ferdon said, “definitely looks quite livable now.”
The Original Article can be found on www.therepublic.com

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