Church History


    Bringing the Church to India

    Edwin and Elsie Dharmaraju joined the Church in Samoa in 1977 and soon wrote to Church headquarters, requesting that missionaries be sent to teach their families in Hyderabad, India. The next year, the Dharmarajus themselves were called on a short-term mission to establish the first branch in India in more than 100 years. On the plane ride, Elsie felt the weight of their responsibility to represent the Church in such a vast and important country. She turned to her scriptures for comfort and happened to open to Doctrine and Covenants 31: “Lift up your heart and rejoice,” she read, “for the hour of your mission is come . . . Yea, I will open the hearts of the people, and they will receive you. And I will establish a church by your hand.”

    William Kesler Jackson, “Lillian Ashby and the Dharmarajus,”