Southern Baptists Target Hindus in Conversion Efforts

October 21, 1999

Source: The Washington Post

On October 21, 1999, The Washington Post published an article on the new prayer guide published by the SBC for Christian prayer toward Hindus during Divali, the Hindu festival of lights. The first sentence of the prayer guide reads: "More than 900 million people are lost in the hopeless darkness of Hinduism." The guide continues: "Pray that Hindus who celebrate the festival of lights would become aware of the darkness in their hearts that no lamp can dispel." Suresh Gupta, president of the Durga Temple in Fairfax, Virginia, stated: "Darkness! This is really offensive...Why should they try to change us? We have a value system people crave in this country. We teach respect for others, for marriage vows, for elders." Randy Sprinkle, who oversaw the book's publication, stated: "Some people accused us of being arrogant when we were praying for the Jews of the world...I would acknowledge that there is an element of arrogance. But it's the arrogance of truth."