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Church leaders are asking for assistance

cover photo (Header photo by Sander Wehkamp on Unsplash)Indonesia (MNN) – A major component for a healthy church is strong leadership. However, there are so many places around the world where church leaders lack access to leadership tools and training. That’s why Asian Access exists—to equip Christian leaders and to bring leaders together within a country so they can live as the Body of Christ. Noel Becchetti of Asian Access (A2) says it’s looking like an exciting new venture is ahead for Asian Access. Church leaders from Indonesia have invited A2 in to see if a leadership development program can be implemented there. They’ve held conversations for about a year now, and Becchetti and some colleagues recently visited some church leaders to assess the next steps...

Large refugee population affecting the economy and nationals

Bangladesh (MNN) – The discussions between Myanmar and Bangladesh for repatriating the nearly 700,000 Rohingya refugees have been slow, creating issues in Bangladesh’s economy. However, the Rohingya people are not pushing for their return to Myanmar either. “The Rohingyas are not willing to go back because they are getting food here, they are getting shelter, and they say they are not willing to go back. But it’s a big issue because a huge amount, a population [around] one million are here. So, it’s a big responsibility for the Bangladesh government, as well as the Christian churches, and NGOs and international NGOs,” Asian Access’ *Pastor Peter says.

courtesy of Save the Children via FlickrPrayer is needed as the nation continues to heal

Japan (MNN) – Seven years ago on the afternoon of March 11, a massive earthquake shifted Japan’s Honshu island by several feet. The moving earth resulted in a series of tsunamis, the first of which struck the Fukushima nuclear power plant at a height of 45 ft, knocking out its backup generators. Three of the six reactors exploded because the cooling systems stopped functioning. Many people died in what’s known as Japan’s Triple Disaster, also called 3/11. Hundreds of thousands of people had...

Will the Rohingya be safe if they return now?

Photo courtesy of Dinis Bazgutdinov via UnsplashMyanmar (MNN) — Myanmar and Bangladesh officials have been discussing the repatriation of Rohingya refugees to Myanmar within the next two years. Plans to begin sending refugees back were set for January 23, but have been delayed as Bangladesh officials questioned the safety of those who would return and if they were returning voluntarily. And they’re not the only ones. Other officials and leaders have raised concerns as well. Asian Access’s Pastor Peter* has been in contact with Christian workers supporting and encouraging those in refugee camps in Bangladesh. After speaking with them, he says it’s difficult to know if the Rohingya people will be safe should they return anytime soon. There is still the question that hangs in the air: Will Myanmar forces abstain from violent attacks and other forms of oppression if the Rohingyas return?

Japan (MNN) — Years before Japan agreed to host the Olympic Summer Games, Asian Access (A2) was praying and planning for Gospel transformation in 2020. After the triple disaster in 2011, Japanese Christians were encouraged by the responses from around the world. Renewed hope seeped into their hearts for their country. Japanese pastors began sensing and sharing the call of God on their country in new ways. The mission field in Japan has been challenging for a long time. Hearts were hard toward the Gospel. But suddenly Christians began to sense God opening new doors for His Word.

Pastor Joshua HariJapan (MNN) — Of the 127 million people in Japan, only one percent of the population is Christian. The nation has been engaged with the voices of many believers for centuries, yet the Church has remained stagnant in its growth. These facts may sound pretty disheartening; however, Pastor Joshua Hari, Asian Access Japan’s national director, has hope. He has a goal to double the percentage of believers in the nation by the year 2023. How? By ‘pouring new wine into new wineskins’. Asian Access’ President Joe Handley recently shared in a blog post the challenge from Matthew 5:38: ‘new wine must be poured into new wineskins.’ 

mnn cambodia headline photoIs Cambodia returning to its violent history?

Cambodia (MNN) – The United States recently called for Cambodia to undo its dissolution of the country’s main opposition party, the Cambodia National Rescue Party or CNRP.

Cambodia Disregards Democracy

According to a statement released by the White House Office of the Press Secretary on November 16, the US says the allegations by the Cambodian government that the CNRP was conspiring to overthrow the government is...

large image of Myanmar refugees fleeing by boat for Bangladesh courtesy of Jordi Bernabeu Farrús via Flickr: https://goo.gl/daSWrSTime is running short for the Rohingya

Bangladesh (MNN) — Myanmar’s Rohingya ethnic Muslim minority are running out of options. During the past seven weeks, over half a million Rohingya have fled Rakhine State in Buddhist-majority Myanmar from what the U.N. has called a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing.” Myanmar’s government refuses to recognize them as one of the country’s official ethnic groups, while security forces and Buddhist vigilantes have raped and killed villagers and burned entire villages. Bangladesh estimates that 800,000 refugees now live in camps in its border town of Cox’s Bazaar, the coastal city where refugees arrive by boat. The camps are overcrowded and unsanitary, while food, water, and shelter are scarce.

A church that met in a bar has exciting news

Pastor Ami’s congregation cleaning up after their last service in the bar. (Photo courtesy of Takahiro Ami via Facebook).Japan (MNN) – A couple of months ago, we told you about pastor Takahiro Ami in Sendai City, Japan, who held his church services in a local bar. It was smelly and crowded, but it was the only place they could find. Well, here’s an encouraging update: Joe Handley with Asian Access says Ami has found a new building better suited for his congregation’s needs. “He is cutting new territory with church life in Japan by meeting outside of a traditional church building,” Handley says. “Even just his step into a bar was courageous, and now, to take this to another level, where they’ll have more accessibility for families, is quite remarkable.”

About 400,000 Rohingya have fled Myanmar

Buddhist monks in MyanmarMyanmar (MNN) – For decades, Myanmar’s Rohingya Muslim minority population has been known as one of the world’s most persecuted minorities. But over the past three weeks, their situation has taken a deadly turn. On August 25, Rohingya rebels attacked police posts throughout Rakhine State. Myanmar’s military tried to root out the rebels, but many Rohingya say soldiers shot those who fled indiscriminately. About 400,000...

flooding in BangladeshOne-third of Bangladesh is under water

Bangladesh (MNN) – While severe flooding has affected millions of lives in Southeast Asia over the past few months, Bangladesh has proven to be especially vulnerable. Over 140 people have been killed and thousands of homes destroyed. On August 11, Bangladesh received nearly the equivalent of a week’s worth of rain during the summer monsoon season in a few hours. A third of the country is submerged, wreaking havoc on its vital farming economy. “They make their house by mud, and when the flood came down, many, many houses broke down,” ...

jpn nightpassage2.jcHaving church in a bar?

Japan (MNN) — When you think of church, what comes to mind? Well-dressed men and women worshipping in a large building with a cross on the top? That’s not always the case. Sometimes, you have to make do with what you have. That’s what Taka Hiroami, the pastor of Praise Community Church in Sendai, Japan who’s working with Asian Access’ leadership development partnership, is dealing with. They don’t have their own building, but that’s not stopping believers from worshipping together.

 

Nepal photo courtesy of Mission Network NewsConversion may not be safe anymore in Nepal

Nepal (MNN) – Christianity in Nepal has two main bullies—Hindu radicals from within the country, and India. Thanks to growing pressures from these two sources, religious freedoms for minority groups are severely threatened. Earlier this month, a bill was passed that will likely restrict Christians and other groups from sharing their faith. It is currently being finalized into law. The language of the bill closely resembles blasphemy and anti-conversion laws from...

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Mission Network News is a mission news service dedicated to keeping Christians informed on evangelical mission activity around the world. In doing so we hope to educate and motivate Christians to prayer, participation, and support of missionary work to help further the Great Commission.

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