The Voice of the Martyrs, April 29, 2021
Most Christians are from the Chin and Karen tribal groups, while relatively few of Myanmar’s Burman ethnic majority have come to faith. Myanmar has many Bible schools even though most are illegal, and indigenous church planters and missionaries boldly proclaim the gospel. Churches are growing despite widespread persecution by the government and the Buddhist majority.
Rohingya Muslims are a small but significant group that has suffered devastating human rights violations in recent years at the hands of the military government.
The widespread, long-running civil war directly affects Christians when they are targeted for attack by the warring factions. Villagers with animistic beliefs take vengeance against Christians, claiming they are angering the local spirits. Church gatherings and church buildings are allowed in many parts of the country, but tolerance varies from state to state. Active believers who share their faith face difficulties. Within tribal groups, families oppose conversion and new believers are subject to close government monitoring. Buddhist monks have actively opposed new Christian converts and evangelists. Pastors face arrest and are usually held for a few days at a time.
Eleven families of believers from the Palaung tribe in Shan State have experienced pressure from villagers to leave their new Christian faith. Villagers grew angry because the believers had gathered to worship and pray. Pray for the persecutors to experience the love of Christ, and to hear and see the gospel displayed in the lives of the Christian families.