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Going online in Mongolia

Over the past several months, many of us have seen our day-to-day lives move online. Whether it be working remotely and communicating on video calls or accessing church services on video calls and online, the pandemic response has seen our lives transformed.

Likewise, much of Asia was similarly transformed. For some of our partners, it meant certain ministries were put on hold, but we are encouraged by news from our partners in Mongolia to hear of their efforts to keep reaching people even if it is through a screen.

Many families in Mongolia are broken. Due to lack of education and opportunities and even alcoholism, widespread in Mongolia, many children grow up in families unable to care for them properly.

There is a real opportunity in Mongolia to reach families by offering life skills training. The team meet with families who are in need of help and teach vital skills to improve family life and the environment in which children are growing up. 

Through this practical help, teams are also able to introduce families with no exposure to Christianity to Biblical values and ultimately the Gospel itself.

Our partners were due to engage with 1300 students after the summer, but with lockdown conditions in place and uncertainly over when meetings can resume, work is underway to recreate the entire life skills course online.

Scripts are being written, filming is underway, and a new video course is in the process of being edited. With this necessary new approach, the team are excited by the prospect of potentially reaching even more people with the course and the good news of Jesus Christ.

As most of you will know from experience, connecting online with people can be awkward, strange and simply not as good as meeting in person. Please pray for the team in Mongolia, that despite the drawbacks of online outreach, they will still be able to connect with people, form strong relationships and faithfully communicate the Gospel.

Pray too that the Lord would help all technology involved to run smoothly and use the new online course to bring many to Himself.


Peter, persecuted

One of our partners in Pakistan has been in touch with news of continuing legal proceedings against him.

Peter, whose name has been changed for security, is an evangelist in the Muslim-majority nation of Pakistan. We first asked for prayer on Peter’s behalf two years ago.

In 2018, he was brought to court under blasphemy charges due to his ministry. As the case continued, Peter and his family were attacked by a large mob who forcibly removed them and many belongings from their home. We later received news that Peter, and his family, were able to reach safety and resume their evangelism.

 

Peter has another hearing in the next few weeks, again accused of blasphemy and receiving funds from suspicious sources.

Despite this, he continues to share the Gospel with those he meets. This past month, he was blessed to baptise eight new believers in a week. In fact, he sees God bring people to faith most weeks.

Please pray again for Peter as he faces these legal proceedings. We are incredibly encouraged by his ministry in Pakistan and ask God, if it is in His will, that He would protect Peter and allow him to continue reaching the people of Pakistan with the Gospel.


Continuing ministry in Nepal

Nepal is experiencing many similar difficulties to much of Asia in the wake of the pandemic response, but what effect has this had on our partners supported through the Beautful Feet Project? 

With many people working as day labourers, the majority of work has dried up, resulting in many families and individuals leaving the main cities for their rural home villages. Due to lack of opportunity and wealth outside of the cities, this has thrown many into poverty.

Among all this, ministry has been continuing. One pastor in the south of the country whom we support was able to distribute vital supplies to many families in need. Recognising the role of other pastors in the area caring for their communities, he also was able to give supplies to them.

In Kathmandu, our partner and friend Bishnu has continued to share the Gospel. Usually found travelling the length and breadth of Nepal, he has found himself restricted to the capital. Yet still, opportunities present themselves as he shares below:

"The Lord has opened for us a big door to preach the glorious Gospel to the children in our neighbourhood. I preach to them every-day when they gather for free tuition at our church. I preach and pray before starting a few hours of informal school for them. With all the schools closed, they are desperate to learn. Their parents consented for me to preach and teach their children from the Bible.

We praise God for this open door, and we have been praying to that will also be able to reach their parents. Last week they asked for Bibles and I was humbled to be able to give them the Holy Scripture and some tracts.”

We praise God for this opportunity and ask for His help for Bishnu as he speaks to the children. Bishnu also reported that there is a local witch doctor who is very unhappy about the schooling in the church, even performing a ritual with a drum overnight against the ministry. Please pray for wisdom as to how to deal with this as well.


New law in Iran threatens Christians

Recent legislation passed in Iran could make it easier for state authorities to arrest and detain believers and other minority groups.

The new legislation allows for the state to ban groups guilty of “deviant psychological manipulation” or spreading “propaganda contrary to Islam.” This wide definition enables the state to take action against any group or individual perceived to be acting against the Islamic religion.

Those found guilty under the new law are subject to punishments ranging from imprisonment to the death penalty.

 

The new law also makes it more difficult for Christians and other minorities to access legal help such as lawyers or advocacy groups.

One of our partners involved with the training of Iranians for ministry has informed us that recently four of his students were arrested. Iranian intelligence services were informed of a network of believers in the underground church, arresting at least nine other believers alongside the four students.

Please pray for Iran and for the underground church that is still thriving there despite these new developments. Pray particularly for these students that they would know the Lord’s presence and comfort at this time.


On the Road Again

We have all been paying close attention to official guidance as we anticipate the return to gathered fellowship.

While different regions have been easing restrictions at different rates, churches are able to meet again in most places, albeit in a very different manner!

Our team are eager to get back on the road and share what God has been doing in Asia with your church or group, gladly adhering to any safety procedures put in place.

Alternatively, our suite of video resources remains available. These range in length from three minutes to twenty minutes and are suitable for use in an online or gathered service. 

To book a speaker or request access to the videos, click here.


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