Thousands Mourn Death of 'India's Father'

Evangelist Bakht Singh led a fruitful life of teaching and founding churches.

Bakht Singh, one of India's most prominent evangelists and church planters, died September 16. He was 97. An internationally known Bible teacher, Singh suffered from Parkinson's disease. He died at his home in Hyderabad, India. Born and raised a Sikh, Singh later declared himself an atheist while studying abroad in England. Then, as an engineering student in Canada, two friends gave him a New Testament. Soon after, Singh became a Christian.In 1933, he returned to colonial, undivided India to serve in full-time ministry. For 60 years he traveled throughout the country preaching at revivals. He initiated over 6,000 indigenous churches and fellowships in India. Today his influence has seen about 10,000 churches planted in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Australia, and the United States. Singh's Bible training center, the Hebron Assembly, continues to equip hundreds of people in sharing their faith.Robert Finley, president of Christian Aid Mission, once wrote: "I have never seen a man who has greater knowledge or understanding of the Bible than Bakht Singh. All our Western preachers and teachers seem to be children before this great man of God."Several thousand people from all over the world attended memorial services to mourn Singh's death. "He's been a father to thousands and thousands of people in India," one follower said.

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