Fearlessly through Open Doors in Central Asia

David Sunday

August 08, 2023

Recently in one of the “-stan” countries in Central Asia, our trainers proceeded cautiously to the place where they met with pastors. They were told, “Yesterday there was someone watching us from the street because there were so many people coming from our location.”

In these countries with Muslim governments, the security concerns are very real. But the door is open enough for us to go – and open enough for the brothers we’re training to go further.

The threat of persecution hovers over the pastors. One brother told one of our trainers during the workshop,

“Tomorrow I must see the chief prosecutor because a teenager from a Muslim family has believed in Jesus. His parents are angry, and they have a phone video of our church service. [But] my son invited him to a youth group, and that is not illegal. Now he believes in Jesus!”

Despite the oppressive atmosphere, we’re still able to bring these pastors together, and it’s evident how valuable the training is to them.

Translated to us through tears, one pastor said that even if many other opportunities for training were offered, he wouldn’t accept them. He said he learned many things in other classes, “but here we learn what God is saying in his Word. This has become a great blessing for us.”

Several brothers drove over 700 miles to attend the training. Some of them drove through the night. But they were all attentive and hungry to learn; their eyes were bright. They continued to ask insightful questions long into the evening.


Two Bible translators, who just completed the Scriptures into the national language, visited our workshop for one day and exclaimed, “This is the best thing to come to this country, because there has never been any training to understand the Bible.”

But the pastors receiving the training are eager to share with others what they’ve learned – and where they are willing to go leaves us amazed.

The two Bible translators told us, “These people will go anywhere with the gospel.”

The two Bible translators told us, “These people will go anywhere with the gospel.”

Our trainers heard a similar statement the next day from our in-country host. His excitement was contagious: “No one would ever believe that our people could teach the gospel. Now we can go to . . .” and he named a very closed country.

Such faith. Such courage. They are taking the gospel where Westerners cannot go.

Severe persecution has been paused now for a few years. But these brothers say, “The door is open now. Let’s go through it.”

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