The Garos acknowledged Omed W. Momin (1867–1902) and Ramke W. Momin (1867–1891) as the first pioneering missionaries. The Good News was first spread by the Church through its early missions. After becoming Christians, many of them dedicated the rest of their life to sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. With pleasure, the Rajasimla Baptist Church—the cradle of Christianity—took on this task and set an example for people everywhere. In those days, there were many threats, persecutions, and ascents to power for those who ventured forth to preach the gospel, but they persisted and stayed firm. The fruits of our ongoing faithfulness and sacrifices are burning brightly right in front of us. “You have been faithful with a few things; I will give you charge of many things,” the Bible says of the faithful servant. Like Jesus stated, “Come and share your master’s happiness,” some individuals, like Bago D. Marak, decide to devote their whole life to their purpose (Matthew 25:23).

Life Sketch and Evangelism of Bago D. Marak
In the year 1842, Bago D. Marak was born in the nearby village of Dambora Songmegap. He got married to Rangsa Asim villager Kongjim S. Momin. There, he was made headman, a post he retained until 1868, the year he became a Christian. At the time, Bago was the wealthiest person in the hamlet due to his immense fortune. He lived a refined life, in accordance with the Garo way of life. Following his instructions, the villagers engaged in a range of rites, festivals, and festivities that included eating, drinking, and general revelry. Bago went to Rangjuli every week for a market with a few other locals. One Sunday, when he was passing through Rajasimla, Bago saw the worship of the Garo Christians. He stopped for a while, listening to the praise hymns silently with his head down. He gestured for one guy to enter, and as his heart began to swell, he took a seat in a corner of the church.

When Rev. Thomas J. Keith visited Rajasimla on January 26, 1868, he found 22 individuals who had willingly chosen Jesus Christ as their personal Savior and had come to be baptized. They were baptized in the Rongdal stream by Rev. Keith. Bago went back to Rangjuli market the same day. Rev. Keith was informed by one of the guys that he wanted to become a Christian and be baptized. Rev Keith immediately invited him to the water and baptized him, speaking to him in Assamese.

Bhai, ami tumar bikoi hunia mone bor rong bai song, tumi etiarpora Soi tanor marka mara tumar muror ronga paguri, aru Diabolor bandha tumar hator katkora, etti begai kohai pelaba aru hongkale Jisur pohorot ahi poritram lobhi” (“Brother, I’m so glad to hear about you. You have the marks of Satan on your hand and forehead, and you’re wearing a red turban over them. How can you quickly throw these things away so that you can enter the light of Jesus and be saved?”).1

After becoming a Christian, he lived the remainder of his life being one of the most pious believers. He was the first of the Garos to become an evangelist, and his efforts had a significant impact on the nearby communities. Even though he only earned ₹1.80/- a month during his early missionary journeys, he made significant spiritual advancements and shared the Good News. Rajasimla offered several devoted fruits to the Christian religion that he diligently struggled for the whole of his life. He worked carefully with a teacher named Chakkin Momin at his side.

The Conversion of the People
A sizable portion of the Rajasimla Church participated in the mission. The surrounding villages were said to be overflowing with gladness and joy. The believers’ missionary effort expanded over time to the local population. With respect, this practice attracted more spiritual adherents as it became more widely accepted in people’s hearts.

Near and far from Garo Hills and further out, Christians scattered to different places. Missionaries like Maljang Momin in Dilma, Torakchon, Apinda, and Dinonath in the Dafla tribes, Rangku W. Momin, a teacher in Baghmara of the South Garo Hills (1867), Rangsong in Syamnagar of the West Garo Hills, and Tilokchon, a compounder in Kangpokpi Christian Hospital (KCH) in Manipur, where he worked and preached the Gospel to the locals;2 Changman Marak, Dingmin Momin, and Silding Sangma paid a visit to the Boro-Kachari people who lived in the North Darang District of Arunachal Pradesh.3 It was the outcome of the spiritual toil of the early converts. Despite being a tiny town in the Garo Hills, Rajasimla overthrew spiritual authority in support of God’s purpose and won many unbelievers over to Christianity.4

Effective preachers who spread the message of Christ, Bago and Chakkin Momin both saw a large number of conversions and baptisms. To spread the good news of God’s love, these missionaries made several trips to various locations, such as Rangga, Dambora, Rangket (now Dilkang), Matchokgre, Badaka, Tokkol, Wakguram, Rongchri, and many more. They successfully sowed seeds in such far-off places, as shown by the large number of believers they brought and baptized there.5

Mission in the 20th Century
From 1867 until the American missionaries departed India, the Garo churches sent missionaries to every region of the Garo Hills. The good news of Jesus Christ is being shared by more churches than ever before. Nevertheless, despite this development, the mission works froze until the mid-1900s. In a similar vein, the missionary work of Rajasimla Church has utterly ceased. Sadly, it was far from the mission’s goals and perished in the motionless environment. The mission movements were first quite broad and all-encompassing, but they slowly broken and lost their place in history.

The 125th Garo Baptist Churches Quasquicentennial Jubilee was held at Rajasimla in 1993. Thousands of individuals heard the message of Jesus, and each and every one of them was deeply impacted. In the end, it introduced the Garo people to the historical occurrences that happened in the era of their forefathers. Missions have resumed in the current wave. This demonstrates how the Bible opposed the Garo churches, particularly because it drew people in. As the mission efforts grew increasingly active, the Shillong Baptist Center provided all believers more spiritual passion via the organization of a Mission Awareness Program in Rajasimla in 2004. Additionally, they asked the Rajasimla Church to support missionary efforts by donating ₹400, or one month’s wage, in order to renew God’s mission.

The Church’s Response to God’s Work
The church exists to further God’s kingdom by helping others, so that everyone might enjoy everlasting pleasure as a consequence of Christ’s atoning act. Presently, the outreach ministry is giving non-Christians and Christians who have abandoned their religion more consideration. In various areas that it has taken up, the church has sent missionaries. They are listed in the following order:

  • Home Mission: Among the Garos
    The mission department employed Mr. Padam Bahadur as a missionary in 2004 after deciding to work with individuals of diverse religions. He worked with Nepali and Hindi-speaking populations for nearly six years. A few individuals were convinced to embrace Jesus Christ as their own Savior. After being baptized, they were all joined to the local churches. Following his retirement, Mr. Crysper A. Sangma was also appointed by the church. The Rajasimla Church decided to relocate to Guwahati and send Sangma, a fresh evangelist. Afterwards, on March 19, 2013, the Adokgre Baptist Church was given ownership of the North Garo Hills-area Bilarpara field market.In addition to God’s calling, the Rajasimla Church has been requested by the Union Garo Baptist Association (UGBA-Pilangkhata) in the Kamrup District of Assam to send an evangelist. The response from the Church was encouraging, and this gave rise to another movement. After exchanging viewpoints at the table conference, the partners concluded that the Garo people were regressing; some were actively following Hinduism, while others were seeking the Songsareks. Following a thoughtful conversation, all sides decided to sign a collaboration memorandum, and the meeting was adjourned.In August 2014, a few members of the mission committee went to Amper village (which is under UGBA) and carried out the first survey. Following the report’s presentation to the executive meeting, the church promptly sent Mr. Crysper A. Sangma to the hamlet of Amper on April 4, 2015. A handful who had strayed from the road have come back to Christ and been baptized in the last year; some of them have also acknowledged their sins and requested God to pardon them. Individuals who had tense relationships with one another subsequently came to Christ. It also helped people follow Christ’s example and obey God’s commands. He has already registered over forty unregistered couples, baptized ninety individuals, and formed three local churches into full-fledged congregations. People are becoming closer to God from all around. It’s all because of an evangelist who works tirelessly and has a great effect on the area. He collaborated with the local Garo community in the UGBA at Bilarpara, Rongchri, Uguri, Rangga, Rangsa Sister Churches, Nojama close to Rangga hamlet, Amper, and Maikuli.6
  • Home Mission: Cross-cultural
    A Muslim guy who was seeking the Lord one day accepted Jesus as his personal Savior. He was baptized at Rajasimla after coming to know Christ through his spouse. The whole family embraced Christ when the father dedicated his life to a mission. It was evident that guy had a desire for missions, and the church promptly entrusted him as a part-time missionary to serve among the Assamese, Bengalis, Biharis, and Hindi-speaking people. In 2009, the church organized his work among the villagers in Goalpara District, Assam. He was paid ₹800/- per month in a lump amount by Goraimari Daughter Church. In addition, throughout his almost two years of employment there, he helped with a few baptisms.The next year, the church sent him to work with Muslims in Upper Assam. At this time, he was more worried about his own area. He went out into the fields and started working in spite of many challenges, threats of death, and occasional villagers’ chases. His unwavering efforts did, however, end in some results. Eventually, he called a few believers forward, and they were baptized. Due to several issues, the church chose to shift its field to the border between Assam and Meghalaya after more than two years of working with his own people. He started preaching the gospel door to door in the community right away. In a short while, he converted some of the people, and the church baptized them.7
  • Frontier Mission: Outreach
    Frontier Mission is an endeavor to dispatch intercultural evangelists to regions where the uninformed remain uninformed. These are “hidden people,” as Dr. Ralph Winter put it so well. Further, he used this word to highlight how unusual it was for them to be unable to communicate their unshakeable conviction because of language and social barriers. Reaching out with the gospel to such individuals and locations is impossible. They can be in a big metropolis, a little town, or a remote island.The the Rajasimla Church decided to enter a new Frontier Mission Field. This came into action after the 150th Sesquicentennial Jubilee Grand Celebration at Rajasimla on April 1, 2018. As a consequence of the church’s commitment to God’s calling, the ministry has expanded. One missionary was sent to Nepal, where he is sharing the gospel with unbelievers. His ministry focuses on fervently reaching out to areas without a church yet. He accepts the Great Commission, which Jesus gave the church in Matthew 28:19, to make disciples of all peoples, including those who do not yet know Him, members of his own people, and those who are not. The missionary was correct when he remarked, “God’s mission is our mission.”

Resources for Mission
Kongjim S. Momin, Bago D. Marak’s wife, was one of the main difficulties that the believers overcome. She gave the impoverished and needy “Merong Jakkep,” or “A Handful of Rice,” in an effort to aid them. This handful of rice was the first that she saved in 1878.8 Neno Momin, Godile Momin, Salje, and other ladies, such Ware W. Womin, gladly joined and supported her altruistic vocation.

The church has made the decision to utilize this “handful of rice” for missionary work and to continue this charity giving as a mission. During the week, the ladies harvest this modest amount of rice on Sunday morning. The next day, Monday morning, they sell these collected handfuls of rice, and they donate all of the income to the mission. Up until now, each lady who has been baptized has kept this act as mission funds, supporting all of the missionaries on a monthly basis and allocating the money for various mission-related tasks and activities. Apart from making generous offerings of their own free will, there are also those who coordinate the Sunday Mission Prayer Day and the Mission Saturday Prayers. These acts of generosity opened the door for people’s giving habits as the church focused on Galatians 6:9, which says, “Let us not become weary in doing well, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”9

Overview
The Rajasimla Church is another example of how His call was realized. The church members were also shown how difference may be represented in wonderful ways, such as togetherness and maturity. “Until all of us come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to maturity, to the measure of the full stature of Christ,” the apostle Paul writes in Ephesians 4:13. So let us embrace God’s invitation, unite our hearts, and urge our fellow churchgoers to make a greater influence and show more compassion to those who still need the gospel.

First Mission Committee Members were (2004-2005)
(1). Mr. Billard M. Marak, Convener
(2). Lt. Jembushclean R. Marak, Asst. Pastor, Mission I/c.
(3). Mr. Lenthingson M. Sangma, Deacon, Member
(4). Mr. Jeswiller M. Sangma, Deacon, Member
(5). Mr. Drenindra R. Marak, Deacon, Member
(6). Mrs. Probaline D. Marak, Women Leader, Member
(7). Ms. Anandabally S. Momin, Youth Secretary, Member
(8). Rev. Jaseng D. Marak, ex-officio Member

Mission Committee In Charges
(1). Lt. Jembushclean R. Marak, Asst. Pastor (2004-2005)
(2). Rev. Jaseng D. Marak, Pastor (2006-2009)
(3). Mr. Relian S. Momin, Asst. Pastor (2010-2011)
(4). Mr. Jamesh D. Marak, Asst. Pastor (2014) as he was deputed and sponsored by GBC to serve as Chaplain to DACF, Delhi, Rev. Jaseng D. Marak (2015) filled in for him.
(5). Mr. Jamesh D. Marak, Asst. Pastor (2016-February, 2018)
(6). Rev. Jaseng D. Marak, Pastor (2018-2020)
(7). Mr. Tengrak G. Momin, Asst. Pastor (2021 till date)

 

  1. Rehunath K. Momin, comp., History of Rajasimla Baptist Church, edited by Jamesh D. Marak (Rajasimla: n.p., 2012), p55.
  2. Rehunath K. Momin, comp., History of Rajasimla Baptist Church, p35.
  3. Krickwin C. Marak, “A brief Mission Background of the Garo Baptist Convention”, in A Paper Presentation in Harding Theological College, Tura, Alumni Meet 2013, on 23-04-2013.
  4. Interview with Lempillar D. Marak, Youth Director of Rajasimla Baptist Church, 28 May 2013.
  5. Interview with Drenindra R. Marak, Deacon of Rajasimla Baptist Church, 8 May 2013.
  6. Reports have been sent by Mr. Crysper A. Sangma to the Pastor of Rajasimla Baptist Church within mid-quarterly.
  7. Interview with Jaseng D. Marak, Reverend, and the Pastor of Rajasimla Baptist Church, 20 May 2013.
  8. Rehunath K. Momin, comp., History of Rajasimla Church, p51-52.
  9. Interview with Trejinda D. Marak, Deaconess of Rajasimla Baptist Church, 19 May 2013.

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