Hurricane (Cyclone) Vardah

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Post Date: December, 2016
Post Categories: Peter Evensen
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What a week! This past Monday Hurricane Vardah (called a cyclone in this hemisphere) made landfall just north of Chennai near Pulicat (I like the name). It caused heavy rains and winds Monday until late in the evening. See my picture feed for some videos of what I experienced. The cyclone caused much damage in Chennai, with tens of Read More

I request that you stay in your room, don’t go out

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Post Date: December, 2016
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This morning I received a text from the president of the BELC that read “I request you to stay in your room, don’t go out, due to the C.M. being in serious and critical condition.” Jayalalitha, the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu (the state in which Chennai is located) suffered cardiac arrest last night (Sunday, Nov 4, Read More

No tolls to decrease the toll

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Post Date: November, 2016
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Since the demonetization of the 500 and 1000 rupee note, cash is scarce. The ATMs here usually say “24 Hours ATM”. They need to clarify that as most are closed 24 hours, not open. You can tell if an ATM has money because it has a long line. No line means no cash. If a machine has cash, it would be only 100 rupee bills (worth $1.50), as Read More

“Q” Please

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Post Date: November, 2016
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I just stood in line for an ATM. This is the first time I have tried to get money since the government demonitized the 500 ($7.50) and 1000 ($15) notes, rendering all the cash I had on hand unusable. My ever-vigilent driver and helper, Kumar, saw that the State Bank of India ATM next to the hotel where we were staying had a short queue (line for us Read More

No money? No problem!

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Post Date: November, 2016
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This past week in a surprise move on the evening of Tuesday, Nov 8, the Indian government announced that the 500 and 1000 rupee notes (worth about $7.50 and $15, respectively) would no longer legal tender after midnight that night. These were the two highest notes in Indian currency. This move rendered at least 80% of Read More

A Famine on the Land

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Post Date: August, 2016
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This past week I taught for two days at the CLCI seminary. I gave an overview of the life of Paul and four of his letters: 1 & 2 Thessalonians and 1 & 2 Corinthians. In addition to the 48 students, 32 pastors came on Tuesday and 42 on Wednesday. The news of our teaching had spread and these pastors came of their own accord. 5 of Read More

The gift of faith

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Post Date: July, 2016
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The mission helpers returned back to the US this past Monday night. It was a busy two weeks! We split into two teams. I and 4 others stayed with the CLCI and visited 9 congregations. We did a VBS program for the children at each congregation that covered seven major events from the beginning of time to the end of time: Creation, Corruption (the Read More

Aliens and Strangers

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Post Date: May, 2016
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I really like India! When I first arrived, I felt like I was home. Since my arrival, however, a number of things have dampened that feeling. When you check into a hotel, you have to fill out a form giving your passport information, date you arrived in India, purpose of your visit, and other personal information. The hotel also is required to make Read More

Jayalalithaa’s fans win her enough fans

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Post Date: May, 2016
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The election count is over; it is now safe to move around the state.  Jayalathaa, the incumbent, bucked a 32-year-old trend where the incumbent is replaced every 5 years (usually to return in the next election) and won a consecutive second term. When I left for the pastoral training in the Puttur district yesterday, I noticed that my apartment Read More

Laying Low for the Election

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Post Date: May, 2016
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Tomorrow (May 16) is election day in Tamil Nadu (where I am staying). The Chief Minister and the Legislative Assembly will be voted on. You can read more here. J Jayalalithaa is the incumbent Chief Minister. She is a former actress and has served as prime minister of Tamil Nadu for a number of years (from 1991 to 1996, in 2001, from 2002 to 2006, Read More