Monday, October 29, 2012

Prayer update: Christians Suffering in Burma

10/12/2012 Burma (Barnabas Aid) – Despite the praise that Burma (Myanmar) has attracted this year for its recent reforms, the Christian minority there continues to be persecuted. A new report has shown that the government is still pursuing its agenda to assimilate the mainly Christian Chin ethnic group into a Buddhist national identity. Lift up to the Lord Christians in Burma, and ask that He will protect them from this on-going campaign, and that they will be able to stand strong in their faith.

The report documents more than 40 separate incidents of ill-treatment or torture, and 24 official complaints of religious freedom violations and other human rights abuses. These include the intimidation and harassment of pastors and other Christian workers, sexual violence, forced labour, closure of churches and disruption of worship services. Pray that the Lord will comfort those who have been the victims of this persecution, and ask that the Holy Spirit would enable them to forgive and love their persecutors.

Pray also for Christian schoolchildren in Burma, who are particularly at risk. Those who attend the free government schools for minorities endure frequent official coercion to convert to Buddhism. The schools try to entice the Chin children, who come from very poor families, with free food, education and government jobs when they graduate. Children at the schools are prevented from practising their Christian faith, and instead are forced to wear monastic robes and shave their heads. They may be beaten for refusing to recite Buddhist scriptures, and the threat of military conscription is used to force them to comply. Pray for Christian children in Burma, that the Lord will be a shield around them so that they will grow up firm in their faith(Source).

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