Burma landscape
Map of Burma

Burma (or Myanmar) is a country in southeast Asia. Burma is bordered by the countries of India, Bangladesh, China, Laos and Thailand. Since 1962, Burma has been ruled by a military junta. In 2011, the country held it's first "democratic" elections in years and the military-run party that has ruled for years won. The elections, however, were condemned as fraudulent by many nations as well as by democratic groups within the country.

The military regime changed the English name of the country from Burma to Myanmar in 1989. Many pro-democracy groups within the country--as well as many countries such as Canada, the U.S.A., and the United Kingdom--reject this name change and continue to call the country "Burma" in English.

The military junta is considered one of the most oppressive and abusive regimes in the world today. The United Nations and many other human rights organizations constantly report systematic abuses such as child labor, human trafficking, and a lack of freedom of speech. Officially, there is freedom of religion, but in reality many Christians and Muslims are persecuted for their faith. The majority of the population is Buddhist.

In Burma we work with a pastor that contacted us after reading about our church on the internet. This pastor runs a small Bible college, helps run an orphanage, and is one of the three pastors who work for the Apostolic Lutheran Church of Myanmar.

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