"The first thing persecuted Christians ask me for is prayer." - Brother Andrew (God’s Smuggler)
As you would recall we were all very excited last year when 220 countries in the world participated in the Global Day of Prayer 2009. It was the realization of a dream and the culmination of a Vision that all the nations in the World will unite on this one day for Repentance and Prayer.
As we started to once again mobilize the nations for Global Day of Prayer 2010 we heard of terrible natural disasters – the earthquake in Haiti, followed by the same in Chile and Taiwan, the mudslides causing many casualties in Uganda due to excessive rain in some parts of the country and even areas where severe drought struck has been reported.
But apart from these disasters the Persecution of Christians in various nations has also increased in the past year or so. Something that we don’t always know of because it is not reported in News bulletins etc.
During our contact with coordinators over the last few months, we have received many disturbing messages of various forms of persecution of people who have either been actively involved with GDOP or people close to them.
However these believers are persistent in their faith and continuing to participate in the GDOP and many other ministry tasks even when facing torture, imprisonment and sometimes death.
Please find a few examples of such instances we have received during the last 2 weeks at the end of this e-mail: (please note that these extracts come from reliable sources and will not disclose any names and/or other details that could be dangerous to anyone)
AND THEN –
After reading these reports, please visit this link http://www.globaldayofprayer.com/countries.html to see whether your country is registered to participate in Global Day of Prayer 2010.
Currently 48 nations have still not registered.
Let us ask ourselves the question - How can we, who are free to gather, to pray and to worship let such an opportunity pass us by?
With many Blessings
The GDOP Team
NIGERIA (Jos, Northern Province)
“Muslim herdsmen attacked Christian villages near the Nigerian city of Jos in the early hours of Sunday, March 7, 2010. The death toll is currently estimated to be more than 500. One aid worker who witnessed the devastation said, “We saw mainly those who are helpless, like small children and then the older men, who cannot run, these were the ones that were slaughtered.” (Courtesy of WIN http://www.win1040.com/ )
ERITREA (Horn of Africa)
Another Christian has died in an Eritrean confinement center. Greg Mussleman with Voice of the Martyrs Canada confirms the report. "Efrem Hagos, 37 years old, apparently died in a confinement center in Assab. He was denied medical treatment." Sources say the death of Hagos (HAY-gahs) was caused by the malaria and pneumonia he had been suffering for the past three months. Musselman says his death brings to twelve the number of Christians who have died while in detention. It shows a pattern. "These believers are given the opportunity: 'OK, if you recant your faith, if you leave your evangelical faith, and you return to the state religion, we'll give you treatment.'" Hagos refused to recant. Over 2,000 Christians remain under custody for their refusal to stop practicing their faith. Bars won't stop the Gospel. (Courtesy of Mission News Network Full story: http://www.MNNonline.org/article/13980 15 March 2010)
Christians around the world are puzzled by sudden, recent anti-Christian activities in Morocco. Todd Nettleton with Voice of the Martyrs says two years ago Morocco would have been called a tolerant Muslim country, but not anymore. "So far this week, we've heard of six different foreign Christians who either have been expelled from the country or are in custody awaiting expulsion."
Nettleton says, "In one case, we heard about Christians working at an orphanage who were expelled from the country, leaving all of the kids in the orphanage without supervision, simply in the custody of the government of Morocco."
21 other foreigners are awaiting deportation.
See also this firsthand account entitled Grieving, by a pastor intimately connected to the orphanage, Village of Hope.(Courtesy of Missions Catalyst www.missionscatalyst.org 17 March 2010)
MALDIVESFrom our own GDOP coordinator comes the report that those who normally organized some kind of gatherings, have all fled the country in fear of their lives. Only one has remained and he will “try and organize something to join the world in Prayer”.
On January 10th 2010 nine Christian families (48 people in total) were forced out of their village at gun point by the local authorities and the police. The officials seized all the personal belongings of the Christians and scattered them on the ground in an open field. 6 of the 11 homes were destroyed.
The Christians were told to renounce their faith in Christ but refused and so were marched 6 kilometers out of the village and left by the side of the road. They could only take with them the things that they could grab as they left. They have not been allowed to return to retrieve other belongings. They have been sleeping on the ground in the forest with no shelter. As they were unable to bring their rice with them, they only have food that they can hunt and gather in the forest.
The officials have returned several times to pressurize the Christians to recant and so be allowed to return to their village.(Courtesy of Laos Update - [email protected]
For more information about Persecuted nations visit the following websites: