Christianity came to India at the very beginning. Thomas, an apostle of Jesus Christ, came to India soon after the foundation of Christianity. He gathered followers in Kerela. For centuries this was the nucleus of Christianity here in India.
Today the Christian are in all walks of life. The armed services, politics, business, education institutions are the most famous of Christian endeavor in India. Health Care, Social service and welfare are others. In recent times much has been done to faster justice for the weaker sections of society, Christian priests and nuns have repeatedly stood for the poor, the down trodden. Christianity in South Bihar is really about a hundred years old. It has spread like wildfire among the tribal of Chhotanagpur. About eighty years ago Christian missionaries started work in the Kolhan area of present day west Singhbhum District.
When the Steel Company was started, requests were made to various Christian organizations to open a school. Thus fifty years ago the Jesuit Fathers began Loyola School. The apostolic Carmel Sisters began Sacred Heart Convent about the same time also in the 1940s, Father Enright began classes in the relations. This was the beginning of the Xavier Labour Relations Institute (XLRI) which is today one of the top Business Management Institute in the country.
With the coming of the Jesult Fathers to Jamshedpur, the sisters of Mercy came from Philadelphia, USA, also about 50 years ago. These sisters began Mercy Hospital in Bardih. They also started Little Flower School in TELCO. At a later stage, St. Joseph’s High School, Golmuri, cane up. St. Mary’s Hindi School, N.Road, also came up later. Today Jamshedpur boasts of many Christian Education Institutions.
St. Joseph’s Welfare Center, Golmuri has now been serving the Steel City for the past twenty years. About three years ago, Loyola School opened its doors to children of lower income groups. Here in the afternoon there is Loyola Coaching Center and Loyola Vocational Training Center. Loyola School and Sacred Heart Convent School have started courses in the open school system.
The Ardeshir Dalal Memorial T.B.Hospital, Baridih, is administered by the Sisters who run Mercy Hospital.
Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity run a Leprosy Hospital in Bhalubasa. They also run a Shishu Bhawan and a Hope for Destitute, called Nirmal Hriday.
Chershire Home, Sundernagar, is a home run for retarded children. It is run by the sisters of saint Vincent de Paul.
Also at Sundernagar there are the offices of the Jan Vikas Kendra, run by the Catholic Diocese of Jamshedpur. This center organizes work chiefly in the rural areas of Dhanbad, Purulia, East Singhbhum and West Singhbhum Districts. In addition to development works, this center caters to the health and mother – childcare. Literacy is also a part of it.
The Bihar Education Project and the Total Literacy Mission is in the capable hands of father Augustine. His office, government associated, is doing extremely well.
The Jesuit Fathers run a spirituality center at Mango. It is called “Upasana” and is situated on the Old Purulia Road, Mango.
Thus we see that although the Christians ate a minority, their contribution is awesome to the Steel City and to the nation, as Christ said, the mustard seed is a small seed. But it gives itself in service to a vast sphere. Christ said, “Let your light shine, so that you illuminate the darkness of ignorance, poverty, ill-health and illiteracy around you.”