For the month of March, we as a church have committed to pray for the persecuted church. We would ask you to join us as we pray for a different country each day during the month.
In Communist Vietnam, Christians are seen as dangerous and traitors to their culture. New believers, in rural areas especially, have their rights stripped away and are often forced to flee from their village to escape the violence against them. Some ethnic minority Christian children are not allowed to go to school because of their faith.
Pray: For believers to receive literacy training and access to Bibles so that they can be strengthened in their faith.
In this Communist nation, Christianity is branded as a Western influence, so believers are often seen as a threat by the authorities. Persecution is more common in rural areas and mostly comes from family and community. Sometimes new Christians are expelled from their communities and forced to live in the jungle for months, even years, before they can relocate.
Pray: For Christians in Laos to be bold in sharing the faith in the face of political and community pressure.
Buddhism is the dominant religion in Myanmar. Many Buddhist groups pressure minorities such as Muslims and Christians to leave the country to keep Myanmar ‘pure’. Thousands of Christians have also been displaced due to civil war. Most Christians are extremely poor, especially in rural areas, and get stuck in the cycle of poverty due to ethnic and religious discrimination.
Pray that Christians in poverty will find contentment and provision in Jesus.
The Church faces immense pressure from a paranoid government. A believer can be fined for having a Christian song on their phone. In some areas, it’s even illegal to own a Bible. Christians are constantly monitored; phones are tapped, and spies try to infiltrate Christian gatherings. House churches are frequently raided and those present can be detained for up to 15 days, interrogated and fined.
Pray: For strength for Christians who risk everything to secretly meet together.
Christians experience limited rights and freedom in Egypt. Persecution, oppression and land theft are common for Egyptian Christians. Unfair laws imposed by the state ensure only limited equality for Christians. Recently, there have been more violent incidents against Christians in Egypt than in past years. Persecution continues from Islamic groups, government officials and even family members.
Pray: For the safety, especially within their families, of those who leave Islam to follow Jesus.
Saudi Arabian law forbids the practice of any religion other than Islam. Conversion from Islam is punishable by death. There are no church buildings and Christian services are held in secret. At home, Saudi Christians risk honour-killings or violent attacks from their Muslim families and communities. Despite these challenges, the number of Saudi Christians is increasing.
Pray: That Christians continue to have boldness to share the Gospel and for the Saudi Church to continue to grow.
If you are born in the Maldives, you are born a Muslim. Leaving Islam is not tolerated and could result in the loss of citizenship. For the small number of Christians in the Maldives, normal church life is impossible. Christians can’t do any religious activities in public and have no complete Bible in their native language.
Pray: For the Church to come up with creative ways of meeting together to encourage and support one another.