Nepal is an ancient land of snow-covered peaks and amazing people. Twenty-eight distinct ranges of the Himalayan mountain chain traverse this tiny nation nestled between India and (Tibet) China. Nepal boasts eight of the world's ten highest summits, including Mt. Everest (8,850 m).
Previously the world's only Hindu kingdom, Nepal is home to many diverse cultural groups including Muslims, Buddhists, and animists. Renowned as home of the towering Himalayas, it has two other distinct regions: a foothills region marked by swiftly flowing rivers, and a flat, fertile area in the south.
It is bordered by India on three sides and by China to the north. Nepal moved to multi-party democracy in 1991, changing from an absolute to constitutional monarchy. Maoist rebels have sparked political unrest and violence across the country since 1996.
The massacre of the royal family in 2001 increased the instability and crushed the hopes of many Nepal people. In early 2004 the monarchy reclaimed absolute power, but in 2006 the king stood down under public and political pressure.
Prior to 1990, believers were routinely imprisoned for having converted or for evangelising. Official persecution ended with the change in government, but pressure and restrictions continue in many areas, especially where the church is enjoying rapid growth. Churches are increasingly responding to our Lord's commission and taking the Gospel to unreached groups. It is still illegal to proselytise, and in some areas churches also face persecution from the Maoists.
Population: 29.8 million Major language: Nepali Major religions: Hinduism, Buddhism
SIM works in Nepal in partnership with a mission involved in medical and development work called International Nepal Fellowship (INF). Nepal is one of the poorest and least developed countries, opening the door to great physical and spiritual opportunity. Fewer than half of the adults are literate, and nearly half live below the poverty line. Child mortality is as high as 60% in some regions.
The translation of the Bible into Nepali was completed in 1915. Besides Nepali, the New Testament is now available in 6 languages, and the New Testament is available in 11 more. Christian literature can now be freely printed and distributed without censorship. Christian broadcasts are little known, but the JESUS film is being widely used.
If you would like to be a part of what God is doing in Nepal, chat to our representative in your state or check the opportunities for service in Nepal online.
CIA World Factbook https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/np.html
Lonely Planet http://www.lonelyplanet.com/nepal
Travel health http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/nepal.htm
Foreign Affairs advice http://www.smartraveller.gov.au/zw-cgi/view/Advice/Nepal