South Asia (MNN) — Leaders of SAARC – the South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation – met this weekend in New Delhi. Member nations belonging to the SAARC region include Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, the Maldives, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.
“As member nations, we have not made the kind of progress we would have wanted to. The tragedy of SAARC, as I would like to call it, is that one member country is destroying it,” said Waliur Rahman, Adviser to Bangladesh’s Prime Minister on International Crimes.
The SAARC leaders aren’t the only ones interested in the region’s future.
“We at Global Advance are giving a lot of focus to the SAARC region for the next several years,” says the ministry’s founder, David Shibley.
“21 percent of the world’s population are in those eight or nine countries. I believe the Church is going to continue to grow very rapidly.”
In a few weeks, Global Advance is holding training conferences for pastors and church planters, Christian business executives, and women leaders. Special focus and energy are being directed toward church planting in the SAARC region.
“They are prayerfully working on a strategy right now for how they will go about planting 10,000 new churches by the year 2030,” says Shibley.
“I would ask that those who are [reading] this on Mission Network News would be much in prayer. Focused prayer for this region is very important.”
Here’s how you can respond:
- Please pray for the protection of pastors and church planters in the SAARC region.
- Pray Global Advance’s training will equip and empower these indigenous leaders.
- Praise God for the growth and expansion of the Church in the SAARC region.
- Pray for courage for pastors and church planters as they face persecution.
“We need to remember that persecution is not new to many of these brothers in Christ…they live and work in that climate,” Shibley notes.
“The Great Commission, of course, has not been rescinded. They understand that, and they continue to be obedient to our Lord’s commission to us.”
Over 90 percent of pastors in developing nations will never have the chance to attend seminary or formal Bible training. Learn how Global Advance meets this need.