THE BLACK KETTLE

Proverbs 21:30

The Persecution & Prayer Alert

“Gently instruct those who oppose the truth.
Perhaps God will change those people’s hearts, and
they will learn the truth. Then they will come to their
senses and escape from the devil’s trap. For they have
been held captive by him to do whatever he wants.”
~ 2 Timothy 2:25-26 NLT


SUDAN: Severe Penalties for Addressing Persecution

Source: World Watch Monitor


Pastors Kuwa Shamal (left) and Hassan Taour (right)
Photo: World Watch Monitor

A trial of four men, including two Sudanese church leaders and a foreign aid worker, resumed on August 29th in Khartoum, with Sudan’s prosecution accusing the defendants of highlighting the alleged suffering of Christians in war-ravaged areas of the country.

The four defendants are Hassan Abduraheem Kodi Taour and Kuwa Shamal, pastors originally from the Nuba Mountains of Sudan’s South Kordofan region; Petr Jasek, a Christian aid worker from the Czech Republic; and Abdulmonem Abdumawla Issa Abdumawla, a Darfuri graduate student. The men have been accused of conducting intelligence activities and providing material support for rebels. Some of the charges against them are punishable by death.

During the trial, the prosecutor demanded the harshest punishment, alleging that the defendants claimed the buildings were bombarded by government warplanes. He also purported that the Christian aid worker was planning to go into areas “claimed to have been destroyed by the Sudanese army” with the intent to interview civilians regarding concerns of torturous conduct by Sudanese authorities.

In Sudan, the demolition of churches and arrests of Christians have increased since 72-year-old President Omar al-Bashir began reasserting Sharia law. Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity. Sudan currently is ranked eighth on Open Doors’ World Watch List of the 50 countries where Christians face the most severe persecution. For more information on the country of Sudan, click here.

Please pray for the four accused men and their families as they endure the ongoing court proceedings and allegations presented against them. As greater awareness of their case becomes known internationally, may fellow believers around the world join in the prayer vigil on their behalf, petitioning our Righteous Judge for their safety and a just outcome. Pray for a miraculous turnaround of this case, and that the Sudanese president and his government officials will come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ who loves and values human lives. Let’s also widen our prayers by lifting up to the Lord all of His followers who are suffering persecution in Sudan, especially those in the Nuba Mountain region where Christian communities have been harassed for so many years.


KAZAKHSTAN: Summer Camps Disbanded by Authorities

Source: Forum 18

Two congregations belonging to the Baptist Union in West Kazakhstan Region were raided by government officials in July as they held summer camps for children. Officials and local journalists claimed that: 1) the churches were trying to attract young people, 2) some of the children may have been present at a religious event without their parents’ consent, and 3) foreigners present as “missionaries” didn’t have the required state permission.

Light of the Gospel Baptist Church in Oral held its five-day children’s camp within the church building from July 4th to 8th, hosting teenagers in the morning and younger children in the afternoon. Most were the children of congregation members, but the ministry team had also invited youngsters from the wider community. Invitations were distributed and a poster was placed outside the building to indicate clearly that the event was organized by the church and that Bible reading would take place.

“Officials from the Regional Religious Affairs Department and the Regional Education Department turned up on three of the days that week during the sessions for younger children,” Pastor Aleksandr Dimitrov states. “They were accompanied by a number of journalists. On the Friday, two police officers even joined them.” The pastor further explains that all of the children were present with their parents’ permission, but refused to show such permission to officials.

Khabar television carried a short hostile news report about the summer camp, including interviews with Bayangul Semgaliyeva, a representative of the Regional Religious Affairs Department, who led the raid; and Oksana Dementievskaya, a journalist who was featured as a “local resident.” The news report carried the caption: “Children are being attracted to non-traditional religious organizations.” Other reports on persecution in this country may be reviewed here.

Thank you for upholding our brothers and sisters in Kazakhstan who are facing opposition for their faithful efforts to reach others for Christ. Pray that Christians throughout the country will be allowed freedom to practice and share their faith. May the spiritual seeds of the teachings take root deeply within the hearts of the local children so these youngsters can grow strong in their relationship with our Lord Jesus. Pray that the local officials and journalists would recognize the error of their negative reporting, compelling them to instead seek the saving truth of God’s Word.


PRAISE REPORT

SRI LANKA: Village Christians Granted Freedom to Worship

Source: National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka


Buddhist monk in Sri Lanka
Photo: Flickr / César González Palomo (cc)

On July 16th, while Sunday School classes were in progress, 12 members of the Young Men’s Buddhist Association arrived at a church to proclaim that the children should not be taught Christianity in a Buddhist village. They also claimed that the pastor and his ministry workers were unethically and forcibly converting the residents of the village.

While the worship service was in progress, about 30 villagers and two Buddhist monks gathered around the church premises. A few members of the group joined the monks as they entered the church and falsely accused the pastor of unethically converting people. They demanded that the pastor and his congregation stop their worship activities immediately and leave the village. They also threatened violence if the pastor and members of the church did not comply.

Following the incident, the pastor and a ministry worker went to the area police station to present a complaint. At this point, they were initially refused but were asked to return when the officer-in-charge was present. The next morning, when two pastors and a ministry worker arrived at the police station for an inquiry with a sub-inspector, the senior Buddhist monk from the village temple and two other villagers were also present. The monk said Christians should not be allowed to practice their faith in the village, including reading their Bibles and praying in their own homes.

In an unexpected act of freedom and enforcement of current laws, the sub-inspector stated that all citizens are guaranteed the right to religious freedom in the constitution. Let us praise the Lord for the sub-inspector’s diplomatic stance and for granting these Christians the freedom to worship!

If you would like to post a prayer of praise or petition on behalf of our persecuted family around the globe, visit VOMC’s prayer wall.


The Persecution & Prayer Alert is a ministry of:
The Voice of the Martyrs Canada, P.O. Box 608, Streetsville, Ontario, L5M 2C1
Tel. 905-670-9721 Website: www.vomcanada.com

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September 8, 2016 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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