Mr. V. Nagal came to India as a missionary in 1892. He was born in Germany and was commended to work in India with the Basel mission. In 1896 he left the Basel mission and shifted his residence from Kannur to Kunnamkulam. Later, he met Mr. Handly Bird who became his mentor in all his future service.
In 1897 Mr. Nagal married Miss. Harriette Michell who was an Anglo Indian. Both of them were baptized by Mr. Handly Bird.
While Mr. Nagal was in Kunnamkulam he began to care for orphan children. His vision for providing for orphans and other ministries materialized when he came to Thrissur and bought land in Nellikunnu. Along with orphanages his vision also included Bible teaching, Schools and special care for old and destitute people. Today at Rehoboth, which means : God has made room for us, all of his visions have been realised.
In 1906 Mr.Nagal built the first building for Rehoboth Girls’ Orphanage and even today we use and keep that building as a memorial to God’s faithfulness.
Over the years the numbers have increased till today we have 180 children. While most of them stay at the orphanage, some are in hostels because of their education.
Mr. Nagal said, that without the ability to read and write the lives of the children would be so much poorer. Therefore, he started a school for the orphan children with 3 class rooms in a thatched roofed building and this became Rehoboth Girls Lower Primary School. It was well received in the neighborhood and quickly grew to accommodate nearly 1000 children who are able to study there till the 5th grade.
In 1914 Mr. Nagal left India for his home land with the anticipation of coming back but World War 1 was against his desire – he could not return to his beloved India. In 1921 he went to his Eternal Home. He was a prolific hymn writer and even today his songs comfort many who pass through the valley of the shadow of death.
Rehoboth Orphanage continued even after the death of its founder thereby proving this ministry is not run by any human hand but by the unseen hands of a living God. For yesterday, He was “Ebenezer” and for the future, He will be our “Jehovah Jirah”.
Rehoboth has many different units but all working for the common goal of sharing the goodness of the love of God in practical ways.
To provide a home for the poor, needy, orphans or destitute children, providing for the educational, physical, medical and spiritual needs, training and equipping them to some gainful occupation in life, so that they will develop into good healthy and progressive citizens. To educate men and women with the spiritual values. To provide homes for elderly people so as to give them a sense of well-being and usefulness.