Published: 00:01 GMT Standard Time - Sunday 26 February 2012
Lent Prayer - Victims of Violence
“He is the God who … saves me from my enemies. You exalted me above my foes; from a violent man you rescued me. Therefore I will praise you, LORD, among the nations; I will sing the praises of your name.” (Psalm 18:47-49)
The last year has been a time of testing for Christians in many nations where they are in the minority. Across North Africa unrest raged and long-standing leaders were toppled. In Egypt, the second Arab country to lose its president, there was a sudden and sharp upsurge in anti-Christian violence. Clashes on the streets of Cairo left at least 13 people dead when Muslims attacked a Christian demonstration in March 2011. And in October, twenty-fi ve people were confi rmed dead and hundreds injured when Christians were attacked as they held a peaceful protest against the destruction of a church.
|Shouwang Church, Beijing, China, has worshipped outside for months in all weathers despite persistently harsh treatment by the authorities
Following the re-election of Christian president Goodluck Jonathan in Nigeria in April 2011, tensions have been high and Christian communities have come under more frequent attack than usual, particularly across the volatile Plateau State. In September alone, dozens of Christians were murdered when Muslims attacked their villages.
Where Christianity is the minority faith, Christians can face grave danger from extremists in the majority faith communities. This ranges from destruction of their homes and church buildings to physical violence, imprisonment, murder and judicial execution.
Christians may also experience unjust arrest and detention. In Beijing, China, members of Shouwang Church have been meeting in the open air every week for months after the church was evicted from their meeting place in April 2011. As a result, many church members have been detained, placed under house arrest or deprived of their homes and jobs.
Barnabas Fund helps victims and their families, providing safe refuges, medical care, training or small business start-up costs to enable them to rebuild their lives, and many other needs, including support for wives and children if the breadwinner is in prison.
Barnabas Fund projects include:
- Victims of Violence Fund (Ref. 00-345)
This article is taken from
“Praying for the Persecuted Church in Lent 2012” -.