Area: 47,000 sq km
A small kingdom in the eastern Himalaya mountains.
Population: 708,484 Annual Growth: 1.74%
Official language: Dzongkha. Nepali is also widely used Languages: 35 All languages
Largest Religion: Buddhist
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The Nepali population has suffered what amounts to ethnic cleansing since 1990. The Buddhist Bhutanese majority has suppressed Nepali culture and language and even allowed violence against people and property in the course of expelling up to 150,000 Nepali Bhutanese. The vast majority of these huddle in meagre UN refugee camps in southeast Nepal, though some emigrate to Western nations. In these camps, several dozen informal Christian fellowships have formed among those who have found faith, and the number of believers is growing. Pray that the compassion of Jesus might be demonstrated to these displaced people.
Bhutan was effectively closed to all Christian witness until 1965. This was followed by 25 years of slight relaxation, during which Indian and other expatriate NGOs were able to witness. Since 1990, restrictions have increased. The spread of Christian witness and the potentially destabilizing effects on society of proselytism and Western-style democracy are the pretexts for harsh treatment of Christians. Pray for the growth of the Church in this land.
For an additional 5 Challenges for Prayer see Operation World book, CD-ROM, or DVD-ROM.
The Operation World book, CD-ROM, and DVD-ROM provide far more information and fuel for prayer for the people of Bhutan.