Published: 00:01 GMT Standard Time - Monday 22 February 2010
Praying for the Persecuted Church in Lent - Burma (Myanmar)
Project(s): 75-745, 75-763, 75-821
Country/Region: Myanmar, Burma
Burma has around 4 million Christians (9% of the total population). Most Christians are members of the non-Burman ethnic minorities, such as the Chin and Karen. The military junta supports the largest ethnic group, the Burman, and persecutes others severely. It also makes use of Buddhism, the majority faith, as a weapon against Christians, who find themselves persecuted partly for their ethnicity and partly for their faith.
Church buildings are often attacked. The army sometimes requires Christians to do forced labour on Sundays or on Christian festivals. In Chin State Buddhist monks are sent into towns and villages to rule over them, and they report any disobedience to the army. Inducements are offered to Christians to convert to Buddhism, and then to convert others. Christian children may be lured away from their families and forced to train as Buddhist monks. The printing of Bibles is forbidden, and smuggled copies may be seized and burned.
Aid for persecuted Christians (Ref. 75-763)
Aid for victims of Cyclone Nargis (Ref. 75-745)
Christian orphans (Ref. 75-821)
Those who bring aid to displaced Christians in Burma report that they sit together singing about how God is with them at all times.
- Praise the Lord for their courage and faithfulness in the midst of adversity.
- Pray especially for Christian children who have lost their parents in raids or natural disasters, that they may be protected from further harm and receive the support that they need.
- Pray too for Christians who were denied government assistance after the devastation of their homes by Cyclone Nargis in May 2008, but who are now rebuilding their lives.