Myanmar, known as Burma until 1989, is the second largest country in South East Asia, with a population of 48 million. There are 135 language groups, the major ones being BHAMAR (or Burmese, spoken by 69% of the people), KACHIN, KAYA, KAYIN, CHIN, MON, RAKINE and SHAN. ENGLISH is the second official language. 80% of the people are Buddhist with small groups of Muslims, Hindus, Animists and Christians. There are many oral communicators who need recordings to hear the Gospel message.
In January of this year, David Halder was able to visit Myanmar from his homeland of Bangladesh. His contact there was Mr. Al Bik, a graduate from the Bible College of Victoria. David spent time with Al at his home, 20 minutes out of the capital, Yangon (which means 'End of Strife'!) David stayed at an inn where visiting Christian workers gave him good fellowship and a chance to tell of the ministry and materials of Language Recordings. David also met a number of Christian pastors and leaders who were very interested to hear about LRI recordings and materials.
Al Bik is currently lecturing in a Bible College. The students were eager to help David and Al record the Good News picture commentary in three languages - ARAKAN, LAI and MARA. That was not so easy as there is usually no electricity during the day. Al is planning to have more recordings made in the future.
Al Bik wrote recently, "David's visit to me in Yangon has been a real blessing. He found out that there are a lot of things to do here. He talked about LRI faith ministry, and if I am to join LRI I need prayerful support from the poor local churches. LRI ministry in Myanmar is essential for this vast land and its many languages, as many of the tribal people cannot read or write. I have great interest in ministry among those who cannot hear the Good News just because they cannot read. This is the reason I want to work with LRI." Al and his wife Doi have three children. Let us join with them in prayer. Pray too for another young man from Myanmar who is currently taking part in the Recordist Training Course in Nepal, and for the Australia Board as they seek God's will concerning a new base in Myanmar, possibly in fellowship with ARM Korea.