Manusha Parisapogu is a student at Flaiz Adventist College in India.
When I was 4 years old my mother committed suicide by burning herself, and my father left. I never saw him again. I was left with my grandmother, but I didn’t live with her very long. I was sent to live at a government school for orphans when I started the first grade, and studied at that school through the tenth grade.
My grandmother died when I was 13, leaving only my uncles to care for me. It’s a tradition in India for uncles to provide some support to children of dead parents, but my uncles never really took part in my care. However, when I was 13, I went to my uncles’ homes during school vacations to work to pay for my textbooks and other needs.
I was a good student and earned high marks in school, but my uncles’ children didn’t receive such high marks. This created some jealousy with my uncles, and when I finished the tenth grade, they didn’t care about me anymore. They expected me to work and make my own way, but my school principal helped me to go on to higher secondary school. I completed that, again with good marks.
My best friend, Mobina, and I often studied together. Mobina was from a Christian family, and one day her uncle suggested that I study at Flaiz Adventist College. Knowing I was a good student, he thought I should go to college and had heard that financial help was available to those who were in need. Mobina’s uncle brought me to Flaiz Adventist College, and we met with the principal. After listening to my story, the principal agreed to find a sponsor for me.
I’m studying math, physics, computer science, and English. I had studied English in higher secondary school, but most of my classes were in Telugu, so I didn’t know English well when I came here, but I’m learning! I write most of my exams in English now, and my grades are still good.
When I came to Flaiz, I knew nothing about Adventists. I had never been to school worships or to church on Sabbath, so I just followed my classmates. I enjoyed the daily worships in our dormitory, the special worships on Wednesday and Friday nights, and Sabbaths in church.
I began helping with song services, and then I started presenting special features. We have Week of Prayer two times a year, and during this past year I was especially touched. I had never really surrendered my life to Jesus, so I surrendered to Him and asked to be baptized here at Flaiz during the Week of Prayer.
Most students who are baptized have family members who come, but I didn’t, so the school has become my family. Now I’m a member of the family of God—a far larger family than I could have ever imagined! I was an only child of my earthly parents, but I have many brothers and sisters now. And when I was baptized, all my sisters in the dormitory stood as my family. That was beautiful.
During summer I have no place to go, but I signed up to go with other students to two village churches to hold meetings. Each place had five days of meetings, all conducted by students. I enjoyed helping with the music.
I’ve just finished my first year at Flaiz. I hope to be a math and Sanskrit teacher one day. Sanskrit is related to many Indian languages and is the combination of Telugu and Hindi.
My testimony is one filled with thankfulness. Before I really knew Jesus, He made a way for me. He provided me with an education and a place to live. He gave me all I needed and more. God used a friend’s uncle to lead me to Flaiz, where I could give my life totally to Him and learn so much I had not known.
Pray to God. He’s the answer to your problems, and He supplies all your needs. I, who had no family, now have a huge family. I want to use the gifts God has given me to bless other young people who come into my life, and thus share God’s love with them.
Part of this quarter’s Thirteenth Sabbath Offering will help build a new dormitory at Flaiz Adventist College in India. Please plan now to give liberally on June 28.