InChains brings you the news about the persecuted Church worldwide. It also brings you resources available for prayer, statistics, and more. Part of being the body of Christ is remembering those that are persecuted. “Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body.” We need to remember and pray for those that are being persecuted, but we also need to pray for those that are doing the persecuting, that they would come to Christ. “But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” InChains prays that you will use this knowledge to strategically and specifically pray.
A new report, put out by human rights organizations, has reported that Islamic militants have killed over 250 people since April of last year. Among the dead are many Christians.
CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC
Two pastors were shot dead by Muslim militants after they performed the Christmas service.
Although China has been implementing these religious policies since 2018, the new laws will be permanent starting February 1. Amidst the new religious laws, there are requirements to be approved by the government in order to meet and all religious groups that are approved must then promote the Communist agenda. Many watchdog agencies are sounding the alarm. Because these new policies will now be laws, Christians are worried that the crackdowns will increase exponentially and be much harsher.
Pastor Wang of Early Rain Covenant Church was sentenced to 9 years in prison, will lose his political rights for 3 years, and will have over $70,000 of assets forfeited. His church issued a statement decrying the sentencing.
China Aid has produced a series that covers the persecution of Early Rain Covenant Church. It is titled “They Passed Through The Valley of Tears.” This series documents the years of persecution the church has endured, as well as what has happened to the many people that were arrested.
A pastor is facing 10 years in prison because the church she ran accepted donations. She is not being charged with fraud.
Sources for Morning Star News report that the police in Uttar Pradesh (northern province in India) are the worst in regards to their treatment of Christians.
Three months after his arrest, a United States pastor is still being held in India on false charges.
It is important to note that there are many more killings, kidnappings, and injured victims than is reported here. Many instances of persecution are reported as “ethnic tensions” or “farmer/herder” actions. They are not reported as Muslim vs Christian. The two parties, in this instance, are the Fulani (Muslim) tribe and the Christians, but are rarely reported this way. In addition, the problems with Boko Haram (also bears the name Islamic State in the Western African Province – ISWAP) are so overwhelming that victims are rarely identified in the media. For the most part, the media is now only reporting casualties by location/attack However, ISWAP is known to target Christians. Because of the reporting challenges, InChains is only reporting those instances that are known to be on Christians.
Eleven Christians were seen being beheaded by Boko Haram (now ISWAP) on a video. The person stated that they were killing these Christians in retaliation for the ISIS leader being killed by the United States. These were not the only Christians killed. A bride-to-be and her bridal party were captured and beheaded on their way to the wedding, which was to occur a few days later.
A pastor was kidnapped on January 2nd. Reverend Lawan Andima is 58 years old and married with nine children. A video of him was released a few days later. He was asking for people to speak with the government to secure his release. He also mentioned he was thus far being treated well and was praying to be reunited with his family.
On January 8th, four Catholic students were kidnapped in Kaduna State. On the same day, thirteen Christians were killed in Plateau State. The Fulani are said to be the culprits behind it.
An Assyrian church, Syrian Orthodox St Maria’s church in Norrköping, is put under guard after several arson attacks.
A monk in Sri Lanka was caught on video attacking a Christian pastor. He accuses the pastor of forcible conversions.
Turkey’s anti-terror branch arrested three Syriac Christians, one a priest. They were transported to Mardin. They cannot be reached and they have no access to lawyers. It is unclear what they are being charged with, but the Christian community is often falsely accused in an effort to eradicate Christianity within Turkey.
Release International has published its January edition of Voices.
Voice of the Martyrs has a Global Prayer Guide available for free.
Christian Solidarity Worldwide has a prayer sheet for the week.
If you would like to receive more frequent updates on Christian persecution, you can follow the Persecuted Church facebook page.