Persecution Podcast Episode 51
This week David discusses Nigeria and Bangladesh. This week’s speaker shares a story from Egypt.
Egyptian Christians pray for their nation.
Nations discussed for prayer:
- On Christmas Eve, five explosions near Jos killed 31 people and severely injured more than 50 others. The explosions occurred in the Christian suburbs of Kadong and Kada Bui as people shopped in outdoor markets. Also on Christmas Eve, a Baptist pastor, the Rev. Bulus Marwa, and five other Christians were killed during attacks on Victory Baptist Church in Alemderi and a Church of Christ in Nigeria (COCIN) congregation in Sinimari. Both churches are in the mostly Muslim Borno state, in northeastern Nigeria. The Islamic extremist group Boko Haram reportedly claimed responsibility for the explosions near Jos as well as the church attacks in Borno state. Tensions remain high in Jos, Plateau state, which lies on the dividing line between the majority Muslim north and mostly Christian south, and in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state. Christians in these areas have been under attack for decades. Please pray for the families of those killed in the bombings and church attacks, and pray that God will heal the injured. Pray that the love and grace of Jesus Christ will be evident in the words and actions of Christians living in these troubled areas and that Christians will respond to their Muslim neighbors with love rather than revenge.
- A Buddhist political group, The United People’s Democratic Front (UPDF), threatened Christians in the Khagrachari district, about 180 miles southeast of Dhaka, Bangladesh, prohibiting them from holding Christmas services, according to an anonymous source. “They threatened the Christians, telling them not to celebrate Christmas in the village and not to do any other Christian activities,” the source said. “The UPDF members warned the Christians that if they celebrated Christmas, they would be in grave trouble. They warned the pastor not to take care of the congregation and ordered him to go back to his previous religion, Buddhism.” Christian elders told the UPDF leader by telephone that they had arranged food for around 100 people, but the UPDF members allowed them to eat only their rice and curry. “The UPDF leader threatened them, saying, ‘If you worship today, it will land you in unforeseeable consequences,’” the source said. The pastor and some members of nearby Shuknachari Baptist Church have been living like refugees for several months due to threats from the armed UPDF. Of 18 Christian families in the village, only seven or eight families have maintained their faith in Christ in the face of this opposition, with the others returning to Buddhism under compulsion. Pray that God will grant strength and courage to the believers in this part of Bangladesh.
This week’s speaker shares a story from an Egyptian Christian bookshop owner.