From the President

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Prayer requested as persecution increases

Reports are coming out every few days about the persecuted church and it appears that a new wave of this type of pressure is rising.

Just yesterday, several news stories released about China and these are just the tip of the iceberg:

ancient antique architecture 879359 500pxAnd, I can verify these and many more. Recently, I had the privilege of participating in a congress for this great country. More than 500 people were in attendance, about 100 of them were either pastors or leaders of missions and NGOs. The majority were Christian marketplace leaders with a heart for mission.

The stories we heard were overwhelming! Just in the previous few months, at least 15 churches were either shut down or their pastors and members were arrested, some taken into custody and many threatened for their faith. Most of the leaders are either friends of mine or deeply connected to our work.

Recently I heard that over 10,000 people had been detained this past year which was quite a jump from the year prior. And, this is just China. I hear story after story of leaders being pressured and persecuted for their faith in over half of the countries in which we serve.

In one key meeting that same week, many of the non-Chinese leaders kept asking questions to find out what to share with the world at large. We were all being asked what is happening and what we could do. I just listened as the meetings seemed to derail from our primary focus to these questions about the state of persecution and what the world can do.

Of course, we can pray and we can advocate our governments to put pressure on these countries. But, as the leader of Asian Access stood up, he reminded everyone:

“Don’t be overly concerned. Of course, we need your prayers. And, of course, you can advocate for us. But, don’t ask us why we stay in our country or why we don’t leave. Remember, that the church grew the most in our country when we were under pressure before. And, we are committed to seeing the Gospel go forth. Please partner with us to help us withstand the pressures but don’t forget, we have a mission that God has called us to serve.”

Call to Pray, Advocate, Empower

Friends, pray for the persecuted church and please do advocate with your governing authorities to help them out. But, let’s also come alongside to empower and equip them in the midst of the challenge. Let’s encourage them as they stand strong and pursue the calling God has given them to reach their countries for Christ!

Pray for Asian Access too. We are seeking to come alongside in a more concerted fashion so pray that God will provide the resources for us to empower, equip and encourage them in ways that no one seems able to do these days. We’re going to be trying some new things and we’d appreciate your prayers and support!

Empowering the Persecuted Church

Here is a new flyer we've developed to raise awareness of the need to empower leaders of the persecuted Church. The link to download this flyer is down below...

A2 Empowering the Persecuted Church v2018 public pg1 thumbA2 Empowering the Persecuted Church v2018 public pg2 thumb 

Please join me in praying for the Persecuted Church. And, pray that Asian Access can come alongside to help equip them to face the challenges they are facing.

May God be with them as the challenges increase!

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Joe Handley, President

Joe HandleyemailThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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More Information

  • Header photo courtesy of Open Doors USA. Inset photos obtained via Pexels.
  • Download flyer, Empowering the Persecuted Church
       2018 Empowering the Persecuted Church (1.6MB)
  • Published: December 2018. This 2-page report was produced to highlight the need to empower leaders of the persecuted Church.

  

About

Joe Handley | My bio
handley joe 2021 headshot8834 lr 300x300pxJoe joined Asian Access as president in 2008 and has logged many miles traveling across the Asian continent. One thing he has learned is to platform other leaders. In this blog, he hopes to share some of their stories that will encourage you to engage with Asian Access that strives to change the few, who change the many.

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