Asia, SE Asia & Australia
Devonport Baptist Church supports the following missionaries working in Asia & South-East Asia, and Australia.
Jan and jit – Serving Karen people in Thailand
|The Karen people are an ethnic minority (despite numbering up to 8 million) in both Thailand and Burma. Many of the Sgaw Karen are Christians. The Pwo Karen, with a quite different dialect, have mostly adopted Buddhism, fusing it with their animistic spirit beliefs. They have been resistant to the gospel.
Yet ancient traditional stories can form bridges to the gospel, for God has already put “Eternity in their hearts”. (title of a book by Don Richardson)
- Jit has raised awareness of Pwo Karen traditions, stirring interest in culture and language and demonstrating that Christ seeks to work through culture, not destroy it.
- 30 congregations, mostly Sgaw Karen, scattered along the border between Thailand and Burma, have also valued Jit’s assistance.
- Refugees from Burma and the little publicised conflict in that country are on the Yawans’ doorstep. Jit and Jan help where possible.
Jan went to Thailand with Global Interaction in 1977 to nurse at the Kwai River Christian Hospital. Jit, locally born, was teaching at the Christian school. He later completed a law degree. In the early 1980s, Jit helped to relocate the community and hospital to make way for a dam. The work drew Jit and Jan together in more ways than one. They married in 1985, and celebrated Anna’s birth a couple of years later. Jan continued nursing and Jit became the hospital’s business manager.
In the 1990s, Jit and Jan completed four years of study in New South Wales, where Jit was ordained. On their return to Thailand in 1998, their focus shifted to evangelism amongst the Pwo Karen people group, and church development work with other Karen groups. They give some assistance to various wholistic ministries that seek to care for the sick, disabled and marginalised, and provide education and self-help for the local people.
While in Thailand, initially Anna pursued local schooling and schooling by distance education with Jan as supervisor. Time in Australia gave her opportunity to enjoy the classroom and the company of fellow students. In recent years, Anna’s schooling has continued at Hebron School in India. From 2007, Anna is at university in Wollongong, NSW.
Bill & Pauline Morrison – Outback Australia
Bill and Pauline have been serving in Outback Australia with Global Interaction since the start of 2009. They work predominantly with two people groups – the Warlpiri people of Lajamanu and the Gurindji people of Kalkaringi. Their vision is to live and work alongside the Aboriginal people and empower them to follow Jesus in their own distinctive ways.
Bill and Pauline continue to focus on training and equipping leaders and mentoring prospective leaders. They also organise and facilitate Outback mission exposure teams. Their heart is to see the new Christians in the communities be encouraged, discipled and continue in their walk with Jesus.
Andy & Wanda – S.E. Asia
Andy and Wanda, together with their three children, have been serving in South-East Asia among one of the least reached people groups, the IS, for the past five years.
Andy has a background in urban planning and is passionate about the environment. He has been working alongside local communities to better manage waste, including recycling of green waste and recovery of landfill waste to produce compost. He also helps out with various tasks at the café and education foundation.
Wanda’s background is nursing and education while also being skilled in administration and cooking. Interesting opportunities to share arise as she connects with people. She is excited about the ways God paves the way for using her skills together while engaging with people in whom God is already at work.
C & A – S.E.Asia
Together with their two young children, C & A are studying in SE Asia and exploring options for working in the region. Over the past year they have been concentrating on learning the local language, and settling into their community.
Ben & Jess – Sydney
After returning to Australia from Japan, Ben & Jess and their three daughters are now living in Sydney, where they provide administrative support & manage the WEC Centre. Ben has recently been elected to the Brach Council of WEC Australia. Jess continues to work as PA for the WEC Leadership Team & also works in administration for the Candidates Course.
Some content taken from the Global Interaction website