“The LORD watches over the sojourners, he upholds the widow and the fatherless."
– Psalms 146:9 (KJV)
Welcome to Zarephath Ministry
Thank you for your interest in the Zarephath Ministry. We are located in southern India and we are dedicated to taking care of the poor and needy, especially widows.
Historically, widows in India prefer not to remarry, regardless of age. Since child-marriages were common, the position of child-widows was pitiable, since their very existence or seeing their face early in the morning was considered a bad omen. Widows were doomed to lead the most austere lives. Among some higher castes, their heads were shaven, they were made to wear red or white sari without ornaments and eat only a single meal each day. The presence of widows at family public functions was totally forbidden. They slogged in joint families, died unwept and unsung. Many social reformers in various states tried to better the lot of such women by educating them and helping them become self-reliant. Child marriage was forbidden by acts in the early 20th century, and after India's independence in 1947, there is no longer a dress code taboo for widows. In cities, at least among the middle class, child-widows are rarely seen. However, remarriages for widows are not common. Widowhood still is considered a curse, and family support is missing at times. Today, many former traditions and rituals are broken as education prevails.
As you navigate this web site, you will discover the impact Zarephath Ministry has made in several lives regardless of religion, caste, and age. We would love to have you as part of this ministry.
“There is much suffering in the world - physical, material, mental. The suffering of some can be blamed on the greed of others. The material and physical suffering is suffering from hunger, from homelessness, from all kinds of diseases. But the greatest suffering is being lonely, feeling unloved, having no one. I have come more and more to realize that it is being unwanted that is the worst disease that any human being can ever experience.”
- Mother Teresa