Wednesday, March 31, 2010


As so many prophetic events unfold while we watch the approach of the Tribulation, it is easy to put stories of persecution on a back burner. However, persecution of the body of believers in Christ is ongoing and increasing in scope. In so many places in the world, Christianity is not only not accepted, but imprisonment, torture, beatings and death is the order of the day. Just a few stories from the last couple of weeks:

"LAOS: Katin Christians Endure"

A group of Christians who were expelled from Katin village in January were again urged to recant their faith in Jesus Christ on March 15, according to The Voice of the Martyrs contacts. The believers have been living in makeshift shelters about 4 miles outside the village, where they were abandoned in January without food or shelter.

“At noon [on March 15] … seven Katin believers were summoned to the district office of Ta-Oyl district,” VOM contacts reported. “The district head of Ta-Oyl, Mr. Bounma, urged the Katin believers to reconsider their decision to follow the Christian faith.” When the Christians again refused to renounce their faith, the district head stated that although the Lao constitution and law provide for freedom of religion in Laos, he is not going to allow Christianity in his district. The Katin believers later learned that the officials planned to burn down their temporary shelters along with 11 temporary homes at the site where they were taken in January.

"MOROCCO: Christians Deported"

In recent weeks, the Moroccan government has continued its crackdown on Christians, expelling as many as 60 Christian aid workers from the country, according to Smyrna Ministries International.

“On March 8, police visited the orphanage Village of Hope, which has been operating with the government’s approval for the past ten years,” Smyrna Ministries International said. “They scoured the grounds looking for Bibles, interrogated children and staff members and announced that the parents had seven hours to pack and say goodbye to their adopted children. All fifteen of the foster parents, the only parents these children have ever known, were deported before nightfall, leaving the 33 children with the police.”

Following this raid, government authorities reportedly targeted believers across Morocco. “When [authorities] visited an American-founded orphanage in the town of Azrou, they drew several young children aside and demanded they demonstrate the ‘proper’ way to pray,” Smyrna Ministries International added. “In Marrakesh, authorities arrested a Korean-born Protestant pastor during his Sunday service, and in the northern city of Larache they deported an Egyptian church leader.”

"INDIA: Pastor Brutally Attacked"

Pastor Ravi was attacked by more than 10 extremists, who forcibly entered a believer’s home where the pastor was holding a prayer meeting. “The extremists entered the house and began abusing the pastor and the believers gathered there,” VOM contacts said. “They hit the pastor with glass bottles, as well as kicking and punching him mercilessly, after which they disappeared from the venue.” Pastor Ravi suffered severe injuries to his leg and head.

The stories above represent just a small sample of the persecution news that we read on a daily basis - and foreshadowing of what is to come in the days ahead. Please remember to pray for our brothers and sisters who are living under the cloud of persecution every day of their lives, yet these incredibly brave Christians continue to preach the good news of Christ Jesus.

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