In China, the slogan of “China Dream” is ubiquitous, it is a vision of a cohesive, equal society, increasingly wealthy and healthy, and happily wedded to Communist Party rule, ardent patriotism and traditional values. The nationalistic and patriotic sentiment do not bode well for churches in China, since Christianity is still deeply suspected of having foreign ties and agenda. We pray for growth of churches and spiritual growth of all believers in China
As China’s total wealth has rapidly grown, there are increasingly pronounced imbalances in Chinese society. This is reflected not only in the polarization of incomes and wealth, but also in plainly observable disparities in education, health and other social protections. The disparity of rich and poor churches in China is also widening. We pray church leaders, especially those in the cities will step up and offer some solution to this problem and try to provide some assistance now.
The top one percent of Chinese households possess one-third of the country's domestic wealth while the bottom quarter of them hold only one percent of it. The disparity is greatest in access to housing, education, and health care. Christian philanthropy is still in its infant stage in China. We pray that believers who are blessed by the Lord will first give themselves to God then devote their efforts to helping churches that have few resources. We pray many more wealthy believers will step up and give for the sake of God's Kingdom.
In every society, family background plays a powerful role in determining the level of education of the people there, but in China political privilege is also an important factor. Having a father who is a Communist Party member also has a clear, positive effect on the number of years an individual will be able to go to school. Many families in China encourage their children to join the Party so they will have the opportunity to advance better. We pray for faith and trust in God for believers who struggle to know how to give their children some advantages in getting ahead.
In China, discrimination against girls has weakened, but it remains a powerful factor in the opportunity for schooling. On average, boys receive 1.5 more years of schooling than girls. Many church workers are female and they face pressure from their family to get married or take on other better jobs. This is particular hard when their parents are not yet believers. We remember their physical and emotional need.
Unequal access to health care has been a source of dissatisfaction for many in China, especially residents of the countryside and small towns where medical insurance has been less widely available and where there are fewer doctors and hospitals. Many workers in rural churches must farm to support themselves since they have little money for health care or education for their children. We pray that God will bless them with not only good health to serve Him and the Lord will help their children to do well in school.
Christmas is one of the rare and precious occasions for churches in China to have multi-generational services. Usually there are presentations by the seniors, adults of all ages, and especially the children. We pray for more opportunities for church members of all ages to be together, learning from and edifying each other. We thank the Lord for all of the little ones who perform in the Christmas programs. May the Lord help them to know Jesus well while they're still young.