Pray for OMF’s Serve Asia applicants as many of them continue to face a lot of uncertainty about if or when they will be able to go to East Asia, with borders still closed in many countries.
The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
— Psalm 18:2
Pray for potential OMF workers from the UK whose applications have had to be put on hold or delayed due to the pandemic. Ask for them to have patience and assurance of God’s sovereignty. May they be reminded of God’s perfect timing and be attentive to what he is teaching them at this time.
Praise God for the start of the new Discover series of the Serve Asia Podcast. The focus of the series is to help listeners to learn more about the history, culture, and Christian context of the different countries in East Asia. By learning more about these places, our hope is that Christians will be inspired and equipped to share the good news of Jesus across the street and across the world. Please pray that the new episodes will help many to learn and grow in their understanding of following and sharing Jesus in other cultures.
Please pray for the planning committee for the OMF (UK) national conference in March 2022 as they invite speakers and develop the theme and outline of the event.
The United Kingdom (UK) consists of England, Wales, Scotland (which make up Great Britain) and Northern Ireland. Out of a population of about 65 million people, the English make up more than 80%; the Scots nearly 10%; and the Welsh and Northern Irish most of the rest. The UK is also home to diverse immigrant communities, mainly from its former colonies in the West Indies, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Africa. East Asians form only about 1-2%.
The UK, a leading trading power and financial center, is the second largest economy in Europe after Germany. The UK was an active member of the European Union (EU) from 1973 to 2016; but on 23 June 2016, it voted to leave the EU. The effect of “Brexit” on the UK economy is uncertain, with question marks hanging over possible future tariffs and investment. Net migration has already fallen.
There are an estimated 1.8 million church-going evangelicals in the UK (about 3% of the total population). Evangelicals in the UK overall are declining, but are reducing at only about half the rate of non-Evangelicals. As a result, by 2020, an estimated 46% of all church goers in the UK will be evangelical. Decline in many churches is largely due to the absence of young people. The average age of Christians in the UK is 45 against an overall population average of 40.
Against this overall decline, new shoots of growth are emerging, particularly among churches identified as New Churches, Pentecostals, the Orthodox and other small denominations. Growth is especially strong in Black Pentecostal churches, which are estimated to make up 23% of all church goers by 2020.
These trends mean that organisations like OMF face a decline in their traditional constituency of supporting and sending churches. Also, churches are engaging in cross-cultural mission in a greater variety of ways, and not necessarily through mission agencies.
OMF UK’s vision is to put local churches in the UK at the heart of OMF’s mission, focusing resources on empowering churches to engage in world mission, with special attention on East Asia’s unreached peoples. Our relationship with churches continues to evolve, with a strong focus on partnering with them in mission engagement.
- Total: 65.6 million
- Anglo Saxon/Celtic: 85.2%
- Asian: 6.3%
- European: 3.3%
- Middle Eastern: 1.9%
- Afro Caribbean: 1.4%
- Christian: 59.66%
- Non religious: 34.49%
- Muslim: 3.2%
- Hindu: 0.94%
- Sikh: 0.63%
- from Operation Word 7th edition, p.624
Thank you, God, for the churches and individuals who have given their prayer, care, and support to missionaries from the UK. Please equip churches to fully support their mission partners in prayer, finances, care, and practical help. We also ask that you would raise up people to help support and care for missionaries.