Raj and Lynda Samuel
1. Tell us a little about yourself and your background (where you live, family, fellowship life)
We live in Dundee – where Lynda was brought up. We are both in our 60s – retired in one sense – pensioners – but never bored. Y’day we had our first interactive seminar in UK in a nearby hotel – Raj and a friend both gave a powerpoint presentation – another friend led worship at the beginning. It was entitled ‘What is Church?‘ and explored how we (Christians) have drifted from our Jewish roots and thought forms, and absorbed many Greek ideas. Church was defined as Christ, His body, each believer, each family – inseparably united with Him. Not divided. We are planning a second seminar in Bathgate, near Glasgow, in March, 2011.
Local gatherings are expressions of the one worldwide church. Our purpose as ‘church’ is to be in the world, as Jesus’ followers, showing forth his love and engaging in friendly conversations with non-believers, willing to share our faith as appropriate. Not huddled in spiritual clubs, in expensive-to – heat-and-maintain buildings, with ageing membership, unyielding traditions and inward-looking activities.
We met in India and were married in our 30s; we have no children. We each have relatives in UK (Lynda) and Chennai, South India (Raj) and a vast and growing network of friends with whom we correspond.
Hospitality is something we do a lot – Indian food is our speciality!
We have a friendly choir in Dundee (6 years old) – and perform twice a year (early December and mid-May) – high quality choral music, mostly sacred from a wide range of countries, centuries, composers and in several languages. Raj is conductor, Lynda is accompanist, or soprano when we sing a capella.
2. You have recently written a booklet called, “Jesus, Redemption Personified” What prompted the writing of this book? What is it about? And, where can copies of this book be obtained?
Raj’s 2nd book, ‘Jesus, Redemption Personified’ was written to show that Jesus is not just Redeemer, but He Himself is redemption. It also seeks to show that matter, for the Christian, is good, not evil (as in some faiths), and that resurrection is bodily, not just spiritual, or soul leaving the body; and that Christ’s redemption is for the entire creation. The book was printed in India for very little and can be obtained from us by post. (For contact details please email us at Hislife, Thanks).
3. You travel out to India a couple of times a year. Tell us about your involvement in that land and what do you see Jesus doing with His people there?
After our choral concerts, we visit India for at least a month, twice a year. We are based in Chennai (Madras), but also travel to Hyderabad and Bangalore. We conduct one or two seminars on church-related themes. We worship in a small fellowship which serves a mixed Anglo-Indian and Tamil congregation. Many are catholic converts. Lynda keeps in touch with some friends who have had psychiatric difficulties; and also is part of a team of educationists who are working on a module entitled, ‘The privilege and responsibility of being a Christian Teacher.’ Her part considers the uniqueness of Christian values and the distinctiveness of the impact a Christian teacher can have on his/her students. Lynda enjoys writing inspiring testimonies of Indian believers.
4. If a new believer came to you to ask what is the biblical way to experience Church life, what would you tell them?
The biblical way to experience church life is to realise that each believer is Church in society – we can meet with other believers to build one another up to maturity and as we grow in the Lord, we learn to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit in our day to day lives and use the gifts he has given us for his glory and to bless others.
Raj & Lynda Samuel