Who hasn't heard of Kenya in their lifetime? The Kenyan people are colorful, musical, artistic and hungry for the love of Christ. The Maasai bush, the Nairobi metropolis, and the Kibera slums comprise a country diverse yet unified in history. As a new era dawns in Kenya, so does the gospel of truth and faith. By meeting felt needs in the bush and the city, participants help bear lasting fruit with current ministry partnerships (ministries like evangelism, orphan care, and community development), and build foundations of future partnerships.
Once a kingdom and British protectorate, for most of the later half of the 20th century, Uganda was under military rule, first under Idi Amin, the subject of the film The Last King of Scotland. Much of northern Uganda was also troubled by the Lord's Resistance Army, which heavily recruited child soldiers. Referred to as the Pearl of Africa, Uganda is diverse in topography and wildlife. You may find yourself in the north partnering with ministries that are bringing still-needed healing and reconciliation or in the south working with churches to evangelize and disciple the next generation of Kingdom workers.
Still hurting from the horrific genocide of 1994, Rwanda searches for healing. Originally home to three tribes, the Twa (known as pygmies), Hutus, and the Tutsis, Rwanda’s history of ethnic tension is long. In 1994 over 800,000 Tutsis were killed and two million Rwandans were displaced. Barely two decades later, the memory is still too fresh. While 38% of the population is Christian, it seems the Christian God is synonymous with the traditional Rwandan god, Imana. Will you share the hope and healing of the Living God with the hurting in Rwanda?
Once Europe’s ”best kept secret” as claimed by Lonely Planet, Estonia’s lush forests, beautiful coastline, quaint countryside, and charming cities are only some of its boastings. It's also home to Skype’s software developers. This former Soviet Union nation still shows evidence of its darker, colder times, while its people search for liberty. Usher in a spirit of freedom as you carry God’s presence into this oft overlooked country.
Sandwiched between Estonia to the north and Lithuania to the south, Latvia is home to the largest medieval church in Europe. Like Estonia, Latvia is a hidden gem for tourism. But it’s not all cathedrals and beautiful architecture – Latvia has a dark side. Often called the “fatherless nation,” Latvia is home to thousands of young people whose families suffer brokenness due to the high unemployment, depression, and substance abuse that run rampant there. Come love the Latvian people and introduce them to the love of God as the father they don’t have. And if you’re there in the winter, you might get to walk on the frozen Baltic Sea!
Step back in time to Baroque cities and old-world countryside when you set foot on Lithuanian soil. Once one of the fastest growing economies in the European Union, Lithuania’s unemployment rate spiked due to the recent global financial crisis. In addition, Lithuania also has the highest suicide rate in the world. This nation, these people need the light and love of Christ to restore hope in the midst of darkness and despair.
Home to the Great Wall and a sixth of the world’s population, China is one of the most exciting and strategic places to be a missionary. While China has grown in leaps and bounds industrially, intellectually, and economically, it's still a politically closed nation. Depending on where you travel, you may meet Buddhists, Muslims, and Taoists—but very few Christians. However, the underground church is extensive and continues growing (and even thriving!) amidst persecution. Will you encourage the long term missionaries in China and share the love of Jesus in a country where His name is not known?
Behind Thailand’s beautiful beaches, its people’s smiling faces, and the tropical jungles lies a terrible secret: modern day slavery. In Buddhist culture, women work to support their families so men can earn spiritual merit as monks. Many parents send their daughters to work in cities where the only option is prostitution. As the country’s natural beauty continues to draw visitors, sexual tourism continues to grow. It’s estimated 60% of tourists visit the Red Light Districts—and 90% of Thai men visit local karaoke bars for the same reason. Will you share the freedom of Christ with the broken in Thailand?
Cambodia boasts the famous Angkor Wat, a Hindu temple that later became a Buddhist monastery. Hidden for centuries under dense jungle, today Angkor Wat is one of most photographed places in the world. Cambodia itself is struggling to heal from one of the worst genocides in modern history. In the 1970’s, the Khmer Rouge killed over 1.5 million men, women, and children. Faced with inconceivable poverty and desperation, Cambodia became a source, transit point, and destination for human trafficking. The people of Cambodia are hungry for hope and healing. Will you share it with them?
With nearly a sixth of the world's population, India is home to 29 languages, the religious practices of Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, and tribal religions, some of the spiciest food on the planet, and a highly segregated rich and poor class. Thanks to the ancient caste system, crimes of social injustice, discrimination, forced prostitution, and human trafficking occur daily. Baby girls are often killed and abandoned, simply because of the financial burden on their families. Lepers are treated as untouchables, and the poorest of the poor live in slums. Will you share hope with the poor, abandoned, and outcast in India?
Home to Mount Everest, the world's tallest mountain, Nepal literally sits on top of the world. In addition to adventurous experiences you will have here, you may also visit widows and orphans in their times of distress and protect the innocent who are prey to human traffickers. This month of your World Race experience will submerge you in a culture that is desperate for an encounter with the living God.