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Published on 03 April, 2013

Open window, new opportunities for Burma

Burma (WWCS) — For the first time in 45 years, Burma's government is allowing private schools.

New private schools started by Christians will give an unreached group of children the opportunity to learn about the love of Christ. These students in Burma can grow to become influential Christian voices in a country with limited religious freedom.

In October, Worldwide Christian Schools decided it was time to invest in the children and the future of Burma, so they launched a fundraising project to come alongside a partner in the country. Since the initial ask, God provided the funds in record time. Already, they've achieved their initial goal of $20,000.

In 1966, the Myanmar government expelled all missionaries and since then has limited the operation of Christian schools, churches, and other Christian organizations. While Christians still do not have legal permission to build a church or register a ministry, the government is allowing "private" schools to operate.

In addition to granting permission for private schools, recent economic changes in Burma have led to the rise of a large middle class. Reports from the country indicate this growing group is searching for affordable, quality education.

In the past, Worldwide Christian Schools® has worked with a church-planter named David*, helping to successfully fund the construction of three new preschools in 2008 which now sustain themselves.

Now, WWCS is partnering with a Burmese church-planting center* under David's direction which plans to establish additional schools.

While the government is providing more opportunities for the private sector than ever before, persecution of Christians is still prevalent. Sometimes it is subtle, and sometimes it is overt. However, the center has found that establishing schools in communities often opens the door for other ministries.

The new schools in Myanmar will reach out to parents, encouraging them to become involved and support the school. Not only will this be a way to witness for Christ, but it will also help the schools become sustainable. This model has worked well for the church-planting center in the past.

The goal is to have the new school run with full community support by the third year of operation, but start-up funding is needed for this school and eventually others. Will you pray? These are Gospel opportunities. Pray for wisdom for the leaders and for open hearts, too.

*name changed for security

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