#34 in Christian persecution, Bhutan

SCORE66.71 REGIONAsia PERSECUTION TYPEReligious nationalism RELIGIONBuddhism PERSECUTION LEVELVery High POPULATION844,000 CHRISTIAN30,000 GOVERNMENTConstitutional monarchy LEADERKing Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck PROFILE OF PERSECUTION Violence 1.7/16.7Church Life 13.8/16.7National Life 13.7/16.7Community Life 11.7/16.7Family Life 12.4/16.7Private Life 13.4/16.7 How the scoring worksDownload country dossier with in-depth research What does persecution look like in Bhutan? All Bhutanese citizens are expected to be Buddhists. Anyone who converts to Christianity faces intense pressure to return to their former religion. Conversion is considered to bring shame on the family, and new believers are often disowned—which makes an enormous difference in a Bhutanese person’s life, since the culture is very communal and the protection of family is crucial. All Christians who worship together are technically worshiping illegally, since Bhutan’s government doesn’t officially recognize any churches. Local authorities often refuse to issue Christians a “non-objection certificate,” which is needed for loan applications, registering property, applying for jobs and renewing ID cards. Meet “Miriam” “When I heard about Jesus, it was like removing the blindfold from my eyes.” Miriam was rejected by her family when she converted from Buddhism, but still follows Jesus—and encourages other Christian women. What has changed this year? Bhutan has risen up the World Watch List due to an increase in violence against Christians. Who is most vulnerable to persecution? Christians who have converted from Buddhism face the most persecution in Bhutan. What does Open Doors do to help? Open Doors works through local partners to strengthen persecuted Christians in Bhutan through relief aid, prayer support and other practical emergency help. Number of Christians statistic is an Open Doors estimate.

Pray for Bhutan

  • Pray that believers who have been rejected by their families would find new communities to offer family, love and hope.

  • Pray that God would use the practical support being provided by Open Doors partners to strengthen Christians facing persecution.

  • Ask God for religious freedom in Bhutan, and for the government to officially recognize Christian churches.

Stories from Bhutan January 18, 2021 13 Christians murdered for following Jesus—every day Read More - June 25, 2020 Open Doors helps more than 100,000 people with COVID-19 relief Read More - April 2, 2020 ‘It is very painful’: How coronavirus is impacting persecuted Christians in Asia Read More -

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