Written by Richard Charlick, D.D.S., M.S.
January, 2014 HTI had its 16th 2-week mission to Myanmar (Burma). We were again invited and cared for by our host Dr. Rev. Robin Seia whose primary goal is the same as HTI’s and that is to share the Good News of Jesus with the unreached, those who have never heard of Jesus before. HTI has been fantastically successful sharing Jesus in Myanmar with several thousand Burmese people asking and praying to become Christians. Unlike anywhere else in the world we have almost 100% of the people we take time to share Jesus with wanting to become Christians, including many Buddhist Monks. Myanmar has over 90% Buddhist and only 2-3% Christian.
An interesting thing has happened which none of us completely understand. The Burmese people will listen and believe us American Doctors when we share the Good News of Jesus almost 100% of the time but there are few that will believe Robin or his trained pastors. I guess even Jesus was not accepted in his home town of Bethlehem.
We have had the privilege of leading some of Robin’s family and neighbors as well as many of the pastor’s families and neighbors to Jesus even after they had heard the Gospel many times. What is the difference? They believe us but they wouldn’t believe their own people.
I assumed that Robin and the pastors would share the Gospel to their people while we Doctors took care of their health care, but no, Robin told me directly you and your team need to share the Gospel with my people because they will believe you but they rarely believe us, and that is exactly what has happened. What a wonderful privilege and opportunity we have had sharing the Gospel which has eternal benefits and still taking care of their temporary health problems.
This year we had 9 team members: 2 physicians; a well experienced nurse; 2 dentists; 3 people filling prescription and reader glasses and I had the privilege of working full time sharing the Gospel and seeing over 582 Burmese people happily praying to become Christians.
This HTI team was very unusual because they were very experienced. The total number of mission trips which our 9 team members had previously taken totaled over 400 mission trips.
We had clinics in 4 different places, including mainly a small church and a new church in the Mon State which is the most unreached state in Myanmar. We treated over 2000 people with medical, dental and fitting glasses. These people had little to no opportunity to get any health care and as a result we saw numerous serious and very unusual health care problems as over 90% of Myanmar’s population of 60 million people lives in poverty. Robin estimated totally we were able to lead over 800 people to salvation in Jesus Christ when all our team, translators and helpers shared with patients.
I received an e-mail a couple weeks after we returned home from one of the pastors in the Mon State. He indicated their church attendance had grown significantly with many new Christians bringing the pastors gifts, fruit and food. They were so happy to become Christians.
We have a wonderful and fantastic opportunity to share Jesus with these people which makes me very excited and thankful. The Lord has been very good to us. I can’t wait to go back again.
Richard Charlick, D.D.S., M.S.