Chittagong Hill Tracts Ministry Presentation
Please note: Due to the dangerous and intolerant Islamic regions in which these Bangladesh pastors serve, their real names will not be published. The photos of leaders will be pixelated as well.
By Pastor Sanga
It has been my prayer that, God will continue to move among His people mightily. Regardless of unfavorable many circumstances in our ministries in Bangladesh, God has been faithfully using His people and using us effectively as He has promised. I do hope that you also are experiencing the grace of God you love to serve Him.
I hope and pray that God would allow us to work together in His vineyard. I tremendously need your prayers because my ministry is subject to difficult challenges for God’s Kingdom. Since I have returned from theological training, I committed myself to reach out people those who have less or have never opportunity to hear the gospel. You may have the information that, the number of Christian population in Bangladesh is the smallest in the world. There are still many people who have never heard the gospel in Bangladesh. This is due to many difficult circumstances evangelist and missionaries have to face. Therefore, I took this challenge to overcome those difficulties and hindrances. It is my commitment to reach them in any price and any means.
Please keep on pray for our ministry so that we may continue our ongoing ministry. As a leader of the ministry, my heart is burning and crying for the unreached tribal peoples because they had never opportunity to hear the gospel. There are many souls to harvest but not enough workers.
The Bible says in Matthew 7, “Keep on asking, and you will be given what you ask for. Keep on looking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened.” God has promised us to give all that what we need. We trust that He will give us all of that what we need if the needs are only for His glory and magnified. I can’t do nothing for my fellow ministers at this moment those who are in very, very hardship situation but the only thing I could remind them is, “JESUS CHRIST, WHOM WE SERVE HIM; HE HIMSELF ALSO SUFFERED MUCH TO DO AND FULFILL THE WILL OF HIS FATHER.” This is true that we must also suffer for His sake, message and ministry but He will never forsake us and He will pour out His wonderful blessings upon us through some of His faithful servants. This is just our consolation right now. This verses come again in my mind that Matt. 11: 28 “Come to me all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you.”
Since we are living in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, which is located in a very isolated and remote place of Bangladesh, we are deprived from all kind of privileges such as religious freedom. We are deprived politically, economically, socially, and educationally. Because we are Indigenous tribal people, minority and illiterates. We earnestly pray that God would extend His helping hand using His faithful people who are praying constantly for the world missions.
We pray that those with Messiah Missions will come forward to build strong a relationship and partnership with us. We also pray that the Lord will come forward through this relationship with new creative strategies, policies and plans. We desperately need your help to establish indigenous evangelizing churches among the unreached tribes of the Chittagong Hill Tracts. May God bless you and use you mightily for the extension of His Kingdom!
Background of Chittagong Hill Tracts
The Chittagong Hill Tracts is hilly mountainous area and located into the Southeastern parts of Bangladesh, bordering Myanmar and India to the East, Bay of Bengal to the South, Tripura state to the North and the Chittagong District in the West. Bandarban is one of the three hilly districts in the terrain Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT). The Chittagong Hill Tracts cover an area of 13,275,13 Square Km. which about 10 percent of total land area of Bangladesh. The Chittagong Hill Tracts have very little cultivable land. Most of the terrace are hilly and up land with ridges rising as high as 4,000 ft. at some places. The tribal people are the original inhabitants of the Chittagong Hill Tracts. There are 11 (eleven) ethnic groups namely Chakma, Marma, Mru, Khumi, Tangchangya, Bawm, Lushai, Pangkhua, Khiang, Tripura and Chak with population of 10,0740 (tribal and non-tribal) having different dialect, social customs, beliefs and traditional culture values.
All the indigenous minorities in these areas have distinctive Mongoloid features. Of the 11 ethnic groups, the Chakma, Marma, Tangchangya, Khiang and Chak profess Budhism. Tripura are mostly Hindu while some of them are Christians. The Mru and Khumi are animism and few of these tribes also accept Christianity. However, all the Bawms, Lushais and Pangkhuas embrace Christianity since many years. These varied ethnic tribal people possess a close traditional culture affinity among themselves, but are socially, linguistically and culturally different from mainstream i.e. Bengali in the plane land. The tribal people are living on “JHUM” cultivation (Slush and Burn). They produce rice, vegetables and others once a year. They have no any other income sources except JHUM cultivation for maintaining their families. 90% of tribal peoples are under poverty.
The rites and creeds of making feast of rituals were different in each group according to a clan of tribe. In like manner, they have a belief that there is evil spirits who control humankind in bad side, sickness, misfortune and accident that happened to man come from evil spirit. This is why tribal people strictly observed and followed their traditional rituals and myth so as not to displease the evil spirits. When they fall into sickness or misfortunes, they offered animal sacrifice to the spirit in hope to gain release from such misfortune. In such belief and conditions, the tribal people of Chittagong Hill Tracts spent their lives since their ancestors without specific religions up to this day (except few persons). Generation to generation depending on nature belief without knowing of real God, Savior of humankind.
Brief Information About our Ministry
The Christian population of CHT constitutes 0.03% of the whole population. Among the eleven ethnic groups, six of them are unreached (less than 2%) evangelical Christians. The Evangelical Outreach Church and Ministries (EOCM) is to preach the gospel to the people who have never heard it in the remote and sprawling Chittagong Hill Tracts. Because of geographical location, other unfavorable surroundings and socio-cultural hindering factors, those remaining unreached groups have less or no opportunity to hear the gospel. Evangelical Outreach Ministry is particularly committed to reaching those unreached peoples and penetrating into the remotest and isolated Hill Tracts sections of the country. Currently Evangelical Outreach Ministry adopted three people groups namely Mru, Khumi and Tripura who have less opportunity or no opportunity to hear the Gospel. Among all tribes in CHT, these three people groups live in the most economic and education backwardness. Right now, we are receiving new converted Christians day by day in our outreach ministry. God is doing incredible work among the unreached.
Our Ministry Motto: “Reach the unreached, teach the untaught and save the unsaved.”
My parents were also mature Christians and they did their level best to help me grow in faith. They regularly took me to chapel to attend worship service and Sunday school. That was how the foundation my Christian faith has been built up in my childhood. However, there was a particular moment in my young age, which changed my whole life completely. It was one of the BSFB (Bible Students Fellowship of Bangladesh) conferences I attended and had a wonderful opportunity to listen a sermon delivered by a guest speaker from abroad. His preaching was so powerful and overwhelming that I was deeply touched and made me to feel the love of Jesus Christ in a very deeper level.
As I approached my young adult age, I began to get involved more actively with the local church ministry and activities. I also actively got involved with the Young Christian Association (YCA), which aimed to nurture and educate young people and encourage them to get involved with local church activities. I also became one of the youth leaders who organized conferences and Bible camps organized by BSFB. My participation in those church activities and camps also helped me grow in my faith and commitment to serve Him more. One of in those days, I clearly sensed the calling of God to serve Him as a full time minister.
My Academic Qualifications
1. I completed my M.S.S (Master of Social Science) from Jaganath University, Dhaka, Bangladesh .1995.
2. I completed my M. Div. (Master of Divinity in Theology) in 2005 from Asia Mission Theological Seminary (AMTS) in Baguio city, Philippines.
Other ministry courses I have completed:
a) Discipleship Training Course: “Discipling another to love Jesus” from Philippine Baptist theological Seminary, Baguio city, Philippines.
b) Leadership and Management Training Course from Baguio Banquet Christian Colleges, Baguio city, Philippines.
c) Pastoral Care and Counseling Seminar from Alliance Biblical Seminary (ABS) Manilla, Philippines.
d) Church planting and Evangelism Training Course from Calvary Baptist Church, Baguio city, Philippines.
e) Cross-Cultural Orientation and Training Course from Bible Student Fellowship of Bangladesh (BSFB), Dhaka, Bangladesh.
f) Best Practice Institute-BPI (Church Planting movement (CPM), Church leadership, evangelism, discipleship & Church management & its administration training). Delhi, India.
g) Stealth Evangelism Training-Las Pinas city, Metro Manila, Philippines.
I wrote many because you may know about me in details. May God enable us to reach the unreached, teach the untaught and save the unsaved! Please greet your family, and all of your fellow workers with Messiah Missions. I pray and hope that God will allow us working together with you in His vineyard.
May the peace of the Lord Jesus and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you always. Amen!
In service to the King,
Pastor Sanga and Family