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.
Iraqi society is becoming more Islamic. Despite cities being liberated from the Islamic State, thousands of fighters remain in Iraq. Whilst it has been safe for some Christians to return home, many struggle to stay due to a lack of jobs. Traditional and Evangelical churches have been divided for many years, but many church leaders say that the Islamic State helped unify the Church.
Pray: For jobs for Iraqi Christians so that they can remain in Iraq and be the light of Jesus.
Twelve states in northern Nigeria enforce sharia (Islamic) law. Here, Christians are pressured not to wear a cross or carry a Bible. Attacks from the Islamic extremist group, Boko Haram, and clashes between Muslim Fulani herdsmen and Christian farmers have left many dead and displaced. Christian homes and churches have also been destroyed.
Pray: That families who have lost everything for their faith are provided for and are again able to earn a living.
Even though Christians have been present in Syria since the first century, Islam is now the main religion. Since the war broke out in 2011, Islamic extremist groups, previously oppressed by the government, have been able to operate openly. Many of these extremist and violent groups, such as the Islamic State, seek to remove Christianity from Syria.
Pray: For those Christians who still choose to stay in Syria, that the joy of the Lord will be their strength.
There are groups in India working towards Hindutva, a process to make Indian rule exclusively Hindu and in some areas it’s illegal to convert to Christianity. Those who do convert are often attacked or even killed. Churches are regularly monitored and disrupted. Police officers rarely intervene when Christians are persecuted.
Pray: For Christians who are boldly sharing the Gospel in areas where conversion is illegal.
The Iranian government supresses Christianity in fear that it might replace the Islamic way of life. Under sharia (Islamic) law, Christians who evangelise to Muslims can be thrown in prison or have their churches closed. Christian media is monitored by the government and believers using such websites or channels are tracked down. Despite this, the church in Iran continues to grow.
Pray: That those imprisoned for their faith in Iran won’t feel alone but connected to the global body of Christ.
Due to the civil war that began in 2015, at least 14 million people are at risk of famine in Yemen. In this environment, persecution and Islamic extremism have flourished. Yemen is an Islamic and clan-based society. Converting to Christianity is seen as betraying one’s clan and new believers are often disowned, forced into a Muslim marriage or killed.
Pray: For God’s provision amid the famine and for the Church to be a light for Christ.
Eritrea is an extremely volatile place for Christians. Homes are raided, Bibles confiscated, and Christians are forced to disappear. Believers are imprisoned and tortured, so they would deny Christ. In Islamic regions of Eritrea, converts face persecution from their family members. Despite this, the Church continues to remain faithful in the face of persecution.
Pray: That those imprisoned for their faith will find peace and comfort amid their situation.