Folks at First – Enosh Lal

An Interview with Enosh Ernest Lal

You can read the interview included in our March 29 2020 newsletter.

  1. Enosh, I’ve appreciated the opportunity to chat with you from time to time. You know, as people from other countries join our congregation, we become more authentically the body of Christ. Please tell us something about where you were born and raised and who your parents and siblings are.

I was born in a small village located in one of the biggest states in India called Utter Pradesh. However, I did not live in that place for long, as my father got a job in a big city in a different state. When I was 16 months old, we moved to Faridabad City in the state of Haryana. We lived in a small room without a kitchen and with a shared a bathroom.

My dad, Sushil Kumar Lal, worked very hard to provide us with a good education, housing, food, and all the necessary things. He used to work with YAMAHA Motors and was able to complete 30 years of service whereupon he received the title of QA (quality analyst). He is currently involved in community work for Christians and serves as secretary for the Faridabad Christian Cemetery.  He is also a very active member of our Church, where he has held numerous office postings.

My Mom, Shobha Lal, has taken care of the house her entire life, though for some years she worked as a teacher in a playschool. My brother, Amos, is 6 years younger than I am. I have always loved him as though he were my kid. He was always really good at studies and was well focused in achieving his goal. He le3 home to study at the age of 18-19; following this he spent @me traveling. Currently, he is associated with the Mayo Clinic in the US as an MD–doctor of internal medicine.

  1. I imagine schools in India are quite different from ours. Tell us something about your early school days and those of your youth.

I attended an English Medium School called St. John’s Public School. However, before my 10th board/grade, I had an eye injury due to which my schooling was stopped. However, I was determined to study, so I looked for private or distance schooling and got myself enrolled for the exams. In this way, I passed my 12th Board, which is comparable to grade 12 in Canada. After that I went on to higher education.

I have a one-year diploma in Computer Education, a two-year diploma in Medical Lab Technology, a Bachelor of Science and a Masters in Business Administration, specializing in Operations Management.

  1. It seems you were an ambitious and successful student. What motivated you to come to Canada? How long have you lived here?

While looking for better opportunities outside India, I applied to 3 countries: Australia, Canada, and Great Britain. By the grace of God an opportunity was presented to me in Great Britain to become a Customer Relations Manager in the Royal Bank of Scotland. However, this required a face-to-face interview in Scotland, which was not possible for me. I was very hurt and disappointed, but my faith in Christ was strong. A3er a few months someone introduced me to the Canadian PR (permanent resident) program. Hence, in 2014 I started the process. In 20 17 positive news was shared with me that my application for PR was accepted by the Canadian Embassy. By the blessing of the Almighty Lord our God, PR was awarded to me in 2018.

It is very hard to explain why Canada, but I’ll say this: it’s all God’s will. Always from my youth I was attracted to Canada, though I never thought that it would be possible someday for me to live here. Now as God has presented me with this opportunity, I would like to utilize it and try to do something good for my family. I always wanted to give them a better life. In other words, it’s my @me to repay my parents for all their effort to give me and my bother a better life and to become better individuals.

  1. This attitude certainly does you credit. Your life here in Canada is no doubt very different from that in India. Is it what you expected it to be? What do you like the most? Is there anything that makes you uncomfortable?

The life here is good and I have no complaints as this is God’s will, though sometimes life is hard. In hard times this Bible verse helps me: “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me” John 14:1

  1. I believe you practiced your profession in India. Tell us something about that.

I was a dedicated and versatile operations leader with over 10 years of experience in business strategy, customer service, public relations, people management, project management, and leadership. Also, I was recognized as an astute problem solver with strong communications skills, and with the ability to facilitate projects that could improve functions and services. Professional friends and colleagues referred to me as a motivator of teams, able to build and sustain partnerships throughout the organization to improve overall organizational objectives through applied leadership skills. Beginning in 2002, I worked in a number of pathology/health agencies serving in   different capacities such as supervisor, manager, and administrator. From 2006-2010, I was a Motor Claims Manager for Viva Insurance. Finally, for four years before coming to Canada, I worked for a Christian organization which focused on misguided youth from below the poverty line, educating them and guiding them toward a productive life.

  1. You have obviously had an interesting working life in India. Upon arrival here in Canada, what motivated you to come to First Baptist Church?  What has made you stay?

I remember that on my second day in Regina I was looking for a Church close to my place. Because I did not have any transportation, and no awareness of bus routes, I prayed and looked online for a church. The first church which I found was a Roman Catholic Church. I got up early the next Sunday morning and prepared for Church; however, when I was about to leave there was freezing rain outside. I was disappointed, but I prayed and looked for a Church where the service starts around 11 am. Believe me, this is a testimony. The next Sunday I found First Baptist (A Place to Belong). This was a sign for me, because back home in India my family and I had attended First Baptist Church from time to time.

The atmosphere in the Church was divine and people around me were very helpful, welcoming, loving, caring, and accepting. I am not sure if it is appropriate to mention names, but a wonderful family in the church accepted me and prayed for me, and I surely thank them. I lost my grand mom a few years back but in First Baptist I found my grand mamma again. I have been loved and cared for like their child. I, in turn, regard them as my family and always will. First Baptist Church stands for its slogan – A place to belong” I feel at home here.

  1. I’ve already indicated that we welcome people of all nationalities. Was this obvious to you when you came to our church? How can we improve our welcome?

As I mentioned above, it’s a place to belong and yes, I felt welcomed and I don’t think of any improvement.

  1. How does it happen that you know English well?

I was not very good at speaking English during my youth. Once, after I had been rejected in an interview, a receptionist stopped me and asked me why I wasn’t qualified. I answered it was because of my poor English. She told me that as a graduate of an English school, I should do better. I thanked her and began to aggressively practice my English. One of my strengths is being open to feedback from anyone, because I believe we can learn from our mistakes.

  1. I think we all need to adopt your attitude. Tell us something about your church in India. What do you miss the most of your church life there?

My church in India has a congregation of 350+ and a service pattern different from FBC.  After the morning prayer and welcome, the pastor gives the announcements and the financial report. This is followed by praise and worship, Sunday School skits, testimonies, a sermon, more prayer, song and offering. The service ends with a closing prayer and benediction.   A3er the service the entire congregation gathers in the courtyard and participates in a social gathering, enjoying tea/coffee and snacks. On special occasions, there is a lunch or supper arranged by the church.

  1. It sounds like a very fine church. Before we end this interview, I would like to know: Is there something that you would like to say that I haven’t asked?

The only thing that I would like to say is a big thank you to the entire FBC community for welcoming me into the family.

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Interviewer: Esther Wiens