Hong Kong (MNN) — As protests in Hong Kong hit the 10-week mark, some demonstrations have turned violent. Protests at the airport caused the city to ground all flights yesterday. What started as a cry of concern for extradition legislation has turned into a demonstration built upon years of frustrations.
Francis Tsui, a board member of Asian Access, says the protests have thrown Hong Kong into the most serious crisis it has experienced in decades. The demonstrations, which are the largest and longest the city has seen in some time, have significantly disrupted daily life. And it is dividing the local Church, too.
“Initially, when the focus of the protest [was] quite clear on trying to fight against the extradition legislation, the church…was more with a unified voice about trying to bring a sense of peace, a sense of calmness during the march showing the demonstration,” Tsui says.
“In the last few weeks, when the focus started to expand to not only just against extradition legislation, but also to almost a whole spectrum of things that the government has not been doing right or doing well, plus, the elements of violence started to appear in some demonstration, the entire city [became] very divided.”
A portion of the city does desire peace, and the root of the protests is a need for hope. Local Christians can offer that hope.
“I really want to see this become an opportunity to bring more people to Christ, that we know how to articulate the hope that we have in our heart to those who [have] yet to know Christ,” Tsui says.
Training Believers to Spread Hope
The situation in Hong Kong emphasizes how important Asian Access’s work in training up local leaders is for the sake of making the hope of the Gospel known.
Tsui sees a tremendous opportunity for Asian Access to equip local believers in the marketplace. In Hong Kong, the future of the Church is unknown. But equipping the local Church to share the hope they have found in Christ could be a game-changer.
“Maybe [it’s] a coincidence, the timing is, but…two months ago…we were launching a discipleship program, a missional discipleship program for marketplace people…because we found that this is the best opportunity when people’s hearts are…restless and look[ing]for hope, and look[ing] for the good news. We want to train more people,” Tsui says.
Pray for Hong Kong
Will you pray? Pray for the message of the Gospel to permeate this city, offer hope, and change hearts. Also, pray for Asian Access’s discipleship program and for it to bear fruit.
“Pray for justice, pray for peace, pray for reconciliation, the city, the community is very traumatized, and also divided, as I said. And I really want to especially lift-up praying for reconciliation, and upholding of justice,” Tsui asks.
Learn more about Asian Access’s work HERE.
Header photo by Simon Zhu on Unsplash.