The most populous provinces in China are Guangdong (106 million), Shandong (95 million), Henan (94 million), and Sichuan (87 million). Henan is also the bastion of house churches in China but they have suffered a great decline recently due to divisions, attacks by cults, and loss of young people. We lift up the believers in Henan for their growth into an unwavering faith in the Lord and revival in each church.
In terms of people with college education, the city of Beijing ranks first in China with 31%, Shanghai, 22% and Tianjin 17%. Surprisingly, Xinjiang is 6th with 10% of the population having a college education. We thank the Lord for the rapid growth of urban churches in China, especially among the well-educated. Ministering to a busy and intellectual congregation is a challenging task. We pray, too, for the need of pastors who are well educated to shepherd these churches.
Because many migrant workers in China take their children with them to work in the cities, these children are called "migrant children". One in four children in the cities is a migrant child but these children can attend only the expensive private schools because they do not have a residency permit (hukou) there. Urban churches often claim they have few resources to care for migrant workers and their children. We pray that some of the churches will do what they can to reach out the to these children with after-school programs and Bible stories.
Many migrant workers who earn low wages blame it on their poor luck and vent their frustration on their children which then deeply affects the school work and psychological well-being of the children. Let us pray for wisdom and faith for believing parents, especially those who are poor or do not have good jobs that the Holy Spirit will remind them of God's promise that He is merciful and shows kindness to those who love Him and that He will bless their families.
Although rural migrants earn more in cities than those who stay in the countryside, they are excluded from many of the social welfare benefits and subsidized housing projects often reserved for registered urban residents. Rural churches suffer because of the lack of younger and working believers who can give financially. We pray that they will trust in the Lord who supplies everything they need for their ministries.
Young migrant workers in Guangdong are typically thirty-five years old and younger with an average of ten years of schooling so they are better educated than the national average of only eight years--junior high school. Young migrant workers usually return home after a few years, if they are properly discipled, they can return to their province and bless the churches back home. We pray for those migrant workers who are being trained and equipped now.
For those who go to Guangdong Province for work, Shenzhen is the top choice, followed by Guangzhou, Foshan, Dongguan, Zhuhai, Zhongshan and Huizhou, in descending order. Many of the churches in Guangdong province specifically target migrant workers. We pray for them that despite this huge challenge of turnover of believers in their churches, the Lord will give them grace upon grace and the fervor to win new souls.