Christians are denied religious freedom and are persecuted in various ways. Church buildings are forbidden in all but a very few cases; most fellowships must meet in homes. Bhutanese who become Christian face the loss of their citizenship, of other benefits – such as free education, health care, employment – and of access to electricity and water. In some instances, harassment and beatings occur. Despite these, groups of believers are forming and increasingly spreading across the breadth of the country.
Foreign Christians have made an impact in two ways:
a) Mission agencies were allowed to be involved in health, agriculture and education programmes, but these are increasingly winding down to nothing. A few small aid projects continue. Visas are difficult to obtain. Pray that God will once again open doors for Christian ministries to sensitively bring the love of Christ into Bhutan. GFA has a Bible college in the capital city of Thimpu.
b) Border ministries. Indian believers in particular, but also Nepalis and others, are active in evangelism and literature distribution among Bhutanese. Many Christians in Bhutan have come to the Lord by these means. Pray that Bhutanese as well as Bhutanese students in India and around the world may hear the gospel and respond positively.