cultural engagement


Chin church helps fellow refugees resettle in Sherman


In 2013, when the Grayson Chin Baptist Church began as a church plant in Sherman, they had 25 members, representing about five Chin families. Approximately 100 Chin people were living in the city at that time and through a partnership coordinated by Texas Baptists Intercultural Ministries and Texas Baptists Church Starting, the Sherman church was sponsored by Chin Baptist Church in Lewisville.

Now, just three years later, the church averages 200 people on a Sunday morning, providing a wonderful place for believers to join together in worship, most of whom are refugees from their native home of Burma. The church now represents...

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Texas Baptists Disaster Recovery to respond to Myanmar summer flooding


Dr. Mang Tiak of Houston could not eat or sleep for days when she heard news that flooding in late July wrecked her Myanmar hometown.

"Many people were suffering," she explained. "It really hit me, and I felt like I needed to do something."

The floods, which were caused by monsoons and a typhoon, brought destruction to all but two of the 14 states in Myanmar, (also known as Burma). The disaster reportedly affected one million people across the country, displacing many of them.

Tiak and her husband, Rev. Dr. Thong Kho Lun, are pastors at Greater Houston Burmese Christian Fellowship where a majority of the members also migrated from...

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Love in deed: Churches embrace timely opportunity for refugee ministry


HOUSTON—Now is a time, like no other, to be prepared to minister with refugees, Mark Heavener, specialist for Texas Baptists' intercultural ministry, told guests at the Feb 27-28 Love in Deed: Refugee Ministry Summit held at Chinese Baptist Church in Houston.

In 2014, a total of 7,214 refugees arrived in Texas from 65 countries. Statistics reveal that one-third of those settled in Houston, making the city a wide open door for refugee ministry.

"Clearly God has chosen the state of Texas and the city of Houston to be the center of His work of redeeming refugees," Heavener said. "I believe we are in the center of God's...

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​Providing Hope for the Refugee


A packed room of messengers gathered to hear about ministry among refugees at the annual meeting of Texas Baptists. Presented by the Texas Baptists Intercultural Ministry, the workshop offered participants a window into the world of refugees, offered guidelines for pursuing ministry among refugees, and also afforded the opportunity to hear-first hand from refugee pastors ministering in Texas.

Some 10.4 million individuals around the world are classified as refugees, those who are forced to flee their home country because of war, oppression and violence against them due to their religion, ethnicity or political views. Unlike...

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A world away, a single bag in hand


DALLAS - The world is coming to Texas, landing at the airport with a single bag.

Texas is the leading point of arrival for refugees, who often land with all of their belongings in an issued bag. With this small cache of items, a family will begin a new life in an unfamiliar place with unfamiliar customs.

"There's gold in those bags," said John Parsons, World Relief regional director. "Actually, what's in there is worth more than gold."

Beyond the sentimental value of the objects, the bags contain the paperwork needed to live and work in the United States. As refugees settle in a land where little is like the society they fled, those...

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