The lore of Dracula brings thousands to explore the history and beauty of Romania, from its castles to the idyllic countryside dotted with horse drawn buggies and endless herds of sheep. Formerly part of the Soviet Union, Romania is quickly rising out of the impoverished state leftover from that era. Still, economic growth is an impossible dream for many orphans and widows, who struggle to for food and hope for the future. Will you share the good news of being remembered and loved by God with those who feel forgotten and alone?
This Eastern European country is caught between its past oppression under the Soviet Union and the desire to be accepted by the West. People in the West tend to be more nationalistic than those in the East, where Russian is more commonly spoken. There’s a substantial orphan (social and full) population and human trafficking’s an issue here, too. Most people claim to belong to the Ukrainian Orthodox church, which is subdivided into three bodies. God’s desire is to bring hope, peace, authentic relationship with himself, and unity to this nation; you’ll find out how exactly you’ll participate in that!
Ireland boasts a heritage of Christianity through Catholicism. Yet the lifeless display of faith reveals that this nation is farther from God than ever. Rampant alcoholism and suicide rates reveal a desperate need for hope. Through sports, children's outreach, street evangelism, pub ministry, and the relationships that just happen along the way, the World Race reintroduces a life-giving faith to this beautiful, historic culture.
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?
Located on the famed Silk Road, Sri Lanka has been colonized or inhabited by the Sinhalese, Tamils, Moors, Dutch, Portuguese, and English. This diversity contributes to their rich history, but has also meant conflict for the Sri Lankan people. The Tamil Tigers and the government engaged in a brutal two-decade civil war, violating many people’s human rights. Buddhism in Sri Lanka date back to ancient times--it's said to be the place where Buddha's teachings were first recorded. A recent Gallup says Sri Lanka is the world's third most religious nation, but only a small minority of the people are Christians. The majority are locked in works-based customs, seeking to earn salvation. Come bring peace and the truth of a relationship with Christ to the people of this island nation.
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?
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?
Located in Southeast Asia, Malaysia has one of the most competitive economies in all of Asia. Known for the tallest twin towers in the world, the Petronas Towers, it is a rising power in our global economy. With a large number of immigrants from India, Thailand, China, and Burma, Malaysia is culturally rich, with heavy influences of Hinduism and Buddhism. However, this culturally diverse and rapidly developing nation is mostly Muslim. With 61% of the population practicing Islam and 19% claiming Buddhism, the majority of Malaysians have never heard the Gospel. Will you share the love of Jesus in Malaysia?