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Crossing Closed Borders

Service Trip to Central Asia

October 2018

Plant With Purpose1 Plant With Purpose2

In Fall 2018, Mark Van Mourick joined Extreme Response International to a closed Muslim country in Central Asiawhere there are only about 2,000 Christians (almost all Russian) among about 8 million people. The majority of inhabitants are considered to be moderate Muslims, and to control this attitude, no outside religious teaching is allowed in the country. Gatherings of any kind are prohibited, except within the confines of each village’s mosque. Extreme Response, our ministry partner in this area, is addressing the most fundamental local development issues facing the remote villagers including clean water, education and healthcare. Extreme Response is thus delicately gaining the trust of the local villagers and planting the seeds of Christianity. Abandoning the Muslim faith and traditions can come at a great cost to these people, who may be disowned by their family, friends and community.