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Buried in the narrow streets is a native Missionary Training Center that pulses with activity to bring the news of salvation to their countrymen.
When Saigon fell in 1975, there were about 154,000 evangelical Vietnamese Christians. When the Communist party took over, they spent three decades trying to eradicate every trace of the church. All foreign missionaries were deported. Church buildings were destroyed. Christians were forced to recant. Thousands of people were killed simply for believing in Jesus. Yet today, despite being one of the worst places on earth for the persecution of Christians, there are more than a million evangelical Vietnamese Christians. Persecution is the fertilizer by which the Gospel spreads.
Today Christians in Vietnam regularly face harassment, beatings, and imprisonment for confessing and sharing their faith. Therefore, house church pastors are secretly trained behind closed doors in facilities that can accommodate them for two to three weeks at a time.
This project in Vietnam purchased a three-story building that provides classrooms, kitchen and dining facilities, and dorm-style living quarters for approximately 40 students at a time. Students come into the building one at a time and remain for the entire time of their training. At the conclusion of training they also depart one at a time in the night to avoid detection. Wave after wave of graduates return to their homes better equipped to preach, teach, and disciple in their villages by applying their training to field evangelism.
"When I go out witnessing, the government officials always follow me, so I pretend to go working in the fields and there I meet my parishioners or unbelievers whom I work with ..."
Photos provided by Christian Aid Mission.