Many people in the Buddhist-majority Myanmar still live with many “tribal” culture traditions and divisions. And even in a tragedy like the Myanmar flooding of 2015, these divisions manifest themselves.
Many Christians Navigate Cultural Challenges
During that time we saw Buddhists in Myanmar often only helping other Buddhists. In traditional culture, this would mean Christians would be expected to only help other Christians… but we saw some Christians act differently.
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:28)
The flooding of 2015 proved to be an excellent time for some Christians in Myanmar to stand out in their culture as they gave unconditional compassion and help to everyone in need, even those outside their religion or cultural group.
Pastor Tsang, the leader of the church we’re calling “New Church Plant,” personally led the charge in giving to all as they had need. And it had a tremendous effect on some bystanders, he said.
We helped everyone in their village even though that spread the resources thin. It softened some people’s hearts toward the gospel, and others it did not, but either way the people in the village knew that the help was an expression of Christ’s love for them.
Expressing the Unconditional Compassion of Christ
Beyond the immediate physical relief, this particular church in Myanmar also reached out to the community in different ways following the Myanmar flooding. He and his wife also provided daycare (pictured above) for the children of families while the parents rebuilt their homes and agricultural livelihoods after the floods.
Here is a video of the kids singing a song about Jesus together! All but two of these children come from either Muslim or Buddhist homes. Praise God the kids were able to hear the gospel and learn a song of praise to the one true God!
Today, Pastor Tsang’s church has stepped out in faith and already built the foundation for the new church building. And they are trusting that God will provide the funding to finish the building, furnish it, and help them develop an agricultural initiative that will lead this church to be self-sustaining in the future.