March 13, 2021

[The Lees Update] Newsletter (March 2021)

Dear Friend,

This week officially marks one year of Covid lockdown here in Manila. Initially stunned, later frustrated, and now somewhat used with this new “norm,” life and ministry go on with a new face. Most of our missionary work has been digitalized, regularly connecting and communicating with coworkers and disciples through various online technology. This new phase of work is quite handful … on the call almost 24/7, limited in space but widened in influence. Who would have dreamed a decade ago to have virtual meetings in your living room with mission leaders from Africa, Asia, and North America? Because of this global pandemic, it has become an unprecedented reality.

In fact, this online communication advancement made it possible for us to reach deeper into the ministry of our disciples who serve in nations that are restricted to the gospel and hostile to Christians. Among the top most difficult countries to follow Christ in 2021 are: Pakistan (#5), India (#10), Sudan (#13), China (#17), Myanmar (#18), and Vietnam (#19)
. (Source: Open Doors 2021 World Watch List)

Eunice and I have been training leaders for years for those challenging nations. Many of our national coworkers and disciples there have either experienced themselves or witnessed someone go through family disownment, physical assault, homelessness, social injustice, and community hatred all because of their faith.

Pastor “QV” and Brother Thanh serving in Vietnam are but two of many examples of such a committed lifestyle toward discipling young professionals in the country. Pastor Nanam and his wife have been in our mentoring group at IGSL before returning to India. Upon graduation, they decided to go to Hindu-dominated regions of Northern India instead of South India where they originated from. Their devoted work continues to bear fruits of new church plants and leadership training in hostile communities. A number of Burmese students are currently in my class, and Myanmar is undergoing a military coup d'état, rousing protests and subsequential violence against citizens. The nation is at unrest. A 97% Muslim-dominated nation, Pakistan stands out as one of the countries where women and children are neglected and mistreated. Mrs. “N”, who Eunice taught the importance of children ministry at IGSL, has gone back to Pakistan and is now reaching out to the least of the society through children ministry among the poor. At the outbreak of Coronavirus in the nation, EAPTC’s work in East Asia has been moving more secretively due to increased regulation and surveillance imposed on churches and pastors in the name of community quarantines.

Eunice and I thank you for enabling us to equip these suffering servants around the world through your sacrificial prayer and giving. We’re privileged to be your hand and feet to serve them. Yes, Coronavirus might have put us under lockdown, but the mission of God is not hindered. May God’s sustaining grace prevail in your life during this season of Lent.

Yours together,
Dr. Paul Lee (& Eunice)