Each year, girls as young as 10 from the Devadasi caste are dedicated to a temple goddess, Uligamma, in a wedding ceremony that begins a lifetime of prostitution. Devadasis believe that when the girl is wed in the temple, the spirit of Uligamma inhabits her for a lifetime. Actual possessions have been reported, but girls have been known to be set free by Jesus. When Hindu priests and other men sleep with these girls, they believe they are actually sleeping with the goddess herself. The girls are used until they are too sick or too old to be desirable. Then they are expected to fend for themselves as best they can through menial labor or begging on the streets. There are official laws against child prostitution, but traditions die hard, and girls in remote villages don't even know about laws enacted hundreds of miles away.
There are people who greatly profit by this practice that ruins many lives, and they will do whatever they can to keep this lucrative trade in place. It is highly secretive, since most people in India, including most Hindus, disapprove of temple prostitution.
There are ministries that help women from the Devadasi caste learn new trades while teaching them the ways of Christ. In some cases it might be necessary for women to do what 19th century missionary Amy Carmichael did and use clever means to rescue Devadasis from the temples.
Pray that these women will be able to overcome the trauma, bitterness, hatred, and fear that they have had to deal with in their past life. Pray that many will live victorious lives in Christ that will draw others to Him.
* Pray for the Holy Spirit to empower and embolden Mission to India and other outreaches to the Devadasis.
* Pray that more and more Devadasi women will hear the good news of Jesus and be free and healed to serve Him.
|Profile Source: Joshua Project|
|Global Prayer Digest: 2009-09-11|
|Global Prayer Digest: 2015-09-04|
|Global Prayer Digest: 2015-09-05|
|People Name General||Devadasi|
|People Name in Country||Devadasi|
|Population in India||21,000|
|Pioneer Workers Needed||1 to 2|
|Progress Scale||1 ●|
|Alternate Names||Atumpatram, Bogam, Guni, Kalavanthu, Kalavathu Devadasi, Kurmapu, Sani, देवदासी|
|Persecution Rank||15 (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)|
|Total States on file||5|
|Specialized Website||South Asia Peoples|
|Primary Language||Kannada (8,400 speakers)|
|Language Code||kan Ethnologue Listing|
|Written||Yes ScriptSource Listing|
|People Groups||Speaking Kannada|
Primary Language: Kannada
|Bible Translation ▲||Status (Years)|
|Bible-New Testament||Yes (1823-1995)|
|Possible Print Bibles|
|Forum of Bible Agencies|
|World Bible Finder|
|Resource Type ▲||Resource Name|
|Audio Recordings||Audio Bible teaching (GRN)|
|Audio Recordings||Fathers Love Letter|
|Audio Recordings||Kannada Bible stories|
|Audio Recordings||Online New Testament (FCBH)|
|Audio Recordings||Online Scripture / Bible|
|Audio Recordings||Oral Bible stories in Kannada|
|Audio Recordings||Story of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project)|
|Film / Video||Following Jesus (India, JF Project)|
|Film / Video||God's Story Video|
|Film / Video||Jesus Film: view in Kannada|
|Film / Video||Magdalena (Jesus Film Project)|
|Film / Video||My Last Day (Jesus Film Project Anime)|
|Film / Video||Story of Jesus for Children (JF Project)|
|General||Four Spiritual Laws|
|General||Got Questions Ministry|
|Text / Printed Matter||Bible-in-Your-Language|
|Text / Printed Matter||Bibles, Bible League|
|Text / Printed Matter||International Bible Society|
|Text / Printed Matter||World Missionary Press Booklets|