Pre-Christmas Attack on Quetta Church Kills Nine Pakistani Christians, injures over 50: please help the survivors


18 December 2017

Two Islamist terrorists attacked the Sunday morning service at Bethel Memorial Methodist Church in Quetta, Pakistan yesterday, 17 December. At least nine Christians died at the church or in hospital from their injuries, including women and children. There was a sustained gunfight with security forces and one of the terrorists blew himself up at the church entrance; another was shot dead. Islamic State have claimed responsibility for the attack.

Nine Christians died and over 50 were injured when IS terrorists attacked a church service in Quetta, Pakistan on 17th December 2017
Nine Christians died and over 50 were injured when IS terrorists attacked a church service in Quetta, Pakistan on 17th December 2017

Rev. Simon, the pastor of the church, was in tears, unable to speak, when Wilson Saraj, Barnabas Fund’s Regional Coordinator called him soon after the attack. Wilson had been worshipping at the same church on 8 October. Yesterday, an extra large congregation filled the church building because it is so close to Christmas.  Amongst them were some of poor and needy families who receive monthly food parcels from Barnabas Fund. At least three of the feeding programme families have sustained serious loss: two fathers, on duty at the main gates of the church compound, died during the attack, and a widow remains in hospital.

Sultan Masih, his wife Asmat and their five children. Sultan’s courage enabled many other Christians to take shelter and survive, but he himself was martyred
Sultan Masih, his wife Asmat and their five children. Sultan’s courage enabled many other Christians to take shelter and survive, but he himself was martyred

Courageous Christian martyrs who saved many lives

The courageous men who sacrificed their lives at the main gates were Sultan Masih (aged 36) and George Masih (aged 63, not related to Sultan). Realising they were about to be attacked, Sultan quickly locked the gates and warned others to get into the church building and leave him to deal with the terrorists. A second after he locked the gates the first terrorist arrived, as recorded by the CCTV cameras. It took the terrorists 82 seconds to climb the gate and get in, thus giving valuable time to the believers to take cover.  George also can be seen on the CCTV before the terrorist jump down. Both Sultan and George were killed, but their tremendous bravery in facing the terrorists alone saved many other lives.

George Masih, although elderly, stayed at his post on the gates to face the Islamic State terrorists, and gave his life to defend the congregation. He leaves behind a daughter and two grand-daughters
George Masih, although elderly, stayed at his post on the gates to face the Islamic State terrorists, and gave his life to defend the congregation. He leaves behind a daughter and two grand-daughters

Urgent prayer needed

Please pray for protection for Christians in Pakistan and around the world, as Islamic State and other Islamist terrorist groups increase their attacks for the Christmas period. A second church attack, also inspired by Islamic State, had been planned yesterday, St Petersburg, Russia, but was foiled by intelligence and security.

Siaka, a widow, is injured and in hospital.  She has already lost her husband and has three sons dependent on her.  Like the families of Sultan and George, she is receiving monthly food parcels from Barnabas
Siaka, a widow, is injured and in hospital. She has already lost her husband and has three sons dependent on her. Like the families of Sultan and George, she is receiving monthly food parcels from Barnabas

Please help the Christian victims in Quetta

Barnabas has sent funds for emergency help for the survivors at Quetta to help with burial, medical and other costs. Please give now to help the Christian victims of this attack. 

Give today

If you would like to make a gift, please direct your donation to Christian Victims of Violence and Injustice 41-842

If you would like to make a donation in GBP please click Donate above. To make a donation in a different currency please select your region at the bottom of this page and continue with your donation.

Telephone
If you prefer to telephone, dial: 
0800 587 4006 from within the UK or 
+44 1672 565031 from outside the UK.

Post
If you prefer to send a cheque by post: Click this link for the address of our regional office. Please quote project reference above.

SMS

For a quick donation of £5.00 by SMS (see terms and conditions here) text AID3 to 70660 (Please note: This facility is presently only available to UK supporters). Text costs £5.00 plus network charge. Barnabas Fund receives 100% of your donation. Obtain bill payer’s permission. Customer care 024 7623 1923. Charity No 1092935.