Andy then moved to Birmingham, England for an arranged marriage to a young woman in the local Indian community. He found himself in a foreign, unfamiliar country with a wife and extended family he had yet to meet. Despite getting to know her for some time, Andy’s wife passed away just months after the birth of their only child, a daughter. The long nights of doubt and mourning nearly broke his spirit and his faith, but once again he was presented with an opportunity for a fresh start.
He moved to Chicago and secured an entry-level job in the travel industry. It was then Andy met Naila, a beautiful Pakistani-American woman who he eventually married. His daughter had a mother once again, and the newlywed couple also had two sons of their own. During this time, a dream began to form in his mind. He thought about his homeland and the images of sharing the good news of Jesus Christ, which brought a smile to his face. Could he create a business that would send out missionaries to people just like those who served his own family? It seemed impossible at the time. He didn’t have a business background and capital funding, and yet the dream developed into a vision.
A vision was cast from the Lord, and with fear and apprehension, Ashok and Naila opened a bank account and put a phone in the front room of their home. City Express Travel was born in the early 1980s. The duo started to contact churches about low-cost short-term missionary airfares, and more than 30 years later, thousands of short-term workers were sent around the world to bring the message of an omnipotent God, and He has given reconciliation to sinful people by the Blood of the Cross of Calvary.
Over the years, City Express Travel has grown into a successful international travel agency. Today, the company features a team of skilled travel professionals, and Andy and his family now live in the suburbs of Chicago. The tiny hut, open sewer, and life surrounded by extreme poverty and crime seems more like a distant memory. Andy’s new goal is to continue work with those that travel to the dark corners of the world where little children and adults look to a god – any god – and show them the Light of Christ.