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Myanmar Diocese asks for Help Fighting Famine

The Anglican Diocese of Sittwe needs help purchasing rice for more than 1,000 families in nine parishes who are facing starvation after the rats consumed both the local bamboo and their crops.

According to the Rt. Rev. James Min Dein, bishop of Sittwe, the diocese is providing rice for families affected by the famine. A family of five people needs approximately 100 kilograms of rice to survive. A thousand families need approximately 100,000 kilograms of rice each month. Currently, 100,000 kilograms of rice cost about $30,000 on the local market.

“On behalf of the hungry in our church, we do earnestly pray for your kind attention and concern… I assure you that every single dollar can make a difference in the lives of the hungry at this time,” wrote Bishop Min Dein in a recent letter about the situation.

Beginning in 2006 the constituent bodies that became the Anglican Church in North America began to cooperate with the (Anglican) Church of the Province of Myanmar in joint ministry in both their country and the United States. Archbishop Stephen Than, bishop of Yangon (Rangoon) and Primate heads a province of 70,000 communicants in six diocese that cover all of the country.

The Province of Myanmar recognized the Anglican Church in North America and is serving in North America by assisting with some 12 congregations of which Myanmar people are part. Archbishop Stephen has assigned one of his priests, Father Samuel Lynn, to work with the Anglican Church here to teach and empower Anglican Myanmar communities here.

In addition, the Anglican Church in North America has begun to partner with the Church of the Province of Myanmar to develop self-sustaining businesses for Christians and parishes in Myanmar where discrimination prevents many Anglican Christians from have jobs. We are also cooperating and providing training so that the Church there is better equipped to share the gospel message with other citizens of Myanmar.

The Anglican Relief and Development Fund provided $38,000 in 2005 to train 110 healthcare workers and provide basic health care treatment and preventions for 55,000 people in the remote dioceses of Sittwe and Toungoo. In 2009, following Cyclone Nargis, ARDF sent $25,000 to the Province to rebuild the provincial health care clinic serving the densely populated city of Yangoon, the headquarters of the Church of the Province of Myanmar.

You can help by donating easily and securely online through the Anglican Relief and Development Fund.

Checks can be sent to:

The Anglican Relief and Development Fund
PO Box 3830
Pittsburgh, PA 15230-3830

…with the words “Myanmar Famine” in the memo line.

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