October 27 – November 11, 2016
Fri. Oct. 28:
Oregon team departs for Bangkok
Sat. Oct. 29:
Brett & Blickens family arrive in Mandalay
Sun. Oct. 30:
Oregon team arrives in Mandalay
Mon. Oct. 31:
Outreach Day 1: Villages – BMX show, Band, Drama, Gospel Message
Tues. Nov. 1 – Thurs. Nov. 3:
Pastor’s Conferences and Outreach each day
Fri. Nov. 4 – Sun. Nov. 6:
Outreach, touring, three nights of festivals, and Sunday service
Mon. Nov 7 :
Team returns to U.S.
A Long-Awaited Opportunity for Evangelism
A historic opportunity has arisen for Reid Saunders Association (RSA) to bring the gospel message and humanitarian aid to the primarily Buddhist country of Myanmar. This is the first time in 50 years that foreign evangelists have had the opportunity to openly proclaim the good news. Team members will depart for Mandalay on October 28, providing the local people with daily public outreach, as well as a pastor’s training conference. The team will return home November 7, after three days of evangelism through festivals.
The RSA team will distribute humanitarian aid and new clothing donated by the sewing team for needy children. They will also present the gospel to the people of Myanmar at local schools, marketplaces, and prisons through drama and personal testimony. Hundreds of local pastors are expected to attend the four-day pastors conference, during which time they will be trained in evangelism and church planting. Transportation is being provided for some of the pastors that are traveling great distances to attend the conferences.
Brett Butcher, Executive Director of RSA, says the pastors are in deep need of encouragement and guidance.
“The biggest problem is, I would say, that they’ve got a very immature church due to the country’s oppressive government. There is uncertainty as to what they can and cannot do,” he says. “Church planters are struggling because they have to plant multiple churches at one time. They are stretched pretty thin.”
The first successful mission work done in Myanmar was by Adoniram Judson and his wife Ann in 1813, having translated the Bible into the Burmese language. As a result of their work, the present Christian church of Myanmar has grown to about 3,700 congregations. However, the government of Myanmar has not allowed foreign missionaries to do permanent mission work in the country since 1966, and it continues to hinder Christians from evangelizing in certain areas.
Myanmar’s main religion is Buddhism. It remains among the ten most violent states for Christians to live. According to the law, it is ordered that every religion is given freedom to exercise their faith and practice. In many areas the alleged freedom is only on paper. Often, Burmese Christians are viewed as traitors to Buddhism and to their country. This religious nationalism fuels severe persecution.
Looking forward to meeting more of the underground church in Myanmar, Brett says he is anxious to visit the country.
“Our coordinator was in prison for a year for aiding some Korean missionaries,” he says. “In that one year, 200 prisoners were baptized, and they let him out a year early. That led him to create a prison ministry that he still manages to this day. Those stories are encouraging to us who don’t regularly see that kind of persecution. It is encouraging to see their faith in God.”
- the team as they prepare to leave, that they would be filled with the Holy Spirit and unified in one heart and mind
- their safety and health while traveling
- the government of Myanmar to allow RSA to move forward without restriction
- sufficient finances to pay for transportation and other budget issues
- many to come to Christ
- the pastors of Myanmar to be encouraged and strengthened in their faith through the Pastor’s Conferences
Your Prayers for Myanmar:
“Praise The Lord for all he has done, is doing and will be doing in this country who needs his light and word so much. Praise you Lord for everything just the way it is at this point, we humbly ask for more.”
– Val Blehm, 11/2/16
Please take a moment to pray right now; not only do your prayers spur God to action, but your prayers encourage and fuel us! If you would like to share your prayer with us we would love to multiply it with an “Amen!”