AIDS-infected children open church in Tamil Nadu

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Madurai (Tamil Nadu), Mar 3 : The Christian missionary Gospel Sake chose a group of 30 AIDS-affected children to inaugurate the church built at Madurai in Tamil Nadu.

Smartly dressed in red and white frocks, the girls happily untied a yellow ribbon to throw open the church services.

The church authorities said they hoped the event would open the eyes of elders to the fact that children end up being the victims of unprotected sex.

"First time children are inaugurating a church. This is a world record. We are pleased to have it because children are choice of Lord Jesus Christ. In the ministry of Jesus, children are only people, and he has called them, and he laid hands over them, and blessed them," said Israel Galab, a priest of Gospel Sake mission.

Ten pairs of HIV-infected parents also attended the inaugural ceremony on Sunday.

India has roughly 2.5 million people infected with HIV, less than half the number of cases that previous studies estimated.

An earlier U.N. study had estimated 5.7 million HIV cases, which would have been the highest total in the world.

But as per the latest available data, India, which has a population of 1.1 billion, has fewer HIV cases than South Africa and Nigeria.

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