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Praying for the Persecuted Church in Len...

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Praying for the Persecuted Church in Lent - Egypt

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Praying for the Persecuted Church in Lent - Egypt

Project(s): 11-220, 11-599, 11-706, 11-819

Country/Region: Egypt

Last year, 2009, was marked by a surge in anti-Christian violence in Egypt. Muslim mobs targeted Christians in a variety of locations, especially in Minya province, destroying homes, shops, cars and crops, setting churches on fire and injuring local Christians. Many Christian women and girls were kidnapped by Muslims, forced to convert to Islam and married off to Muslim men. Some Christians were killed.

Egypt
Many Christians in Egypt are very poor because of the discrimination they suffer, and have to live and work in filthy garbage villages
The Church in Egypt is one of the oldest in the world but today around 90% of the population are Muslims; there are between six and nine million Christians (about 10% of the population).

The Egyptian constitution guarantees freedom of religion, but Christians are discriminated against in education and employment. As a result, many are extremely poor. Thousands of Christians live in “garbage villages” and earn a living sorting the household rubbish. In April 2009 many of them lost a major part of their livelihood when the Egyptian government culled their pigs (claiming erroneously that it was a necessary precaution against swine flu).

Presidential permission is needed to build churches, and obtaining the permit is a very slow and often futile process. Permission from local governors is needed for repairs to church buildings. There is much hostility from the Muslim community towards the idea of Christians having new places of worship and many of the anti- Christian attacks last year centred on this.

While there is no law against leaving Islam, converts to Christianity usually face harassment and severe pressure, sometimes even threats to their lives, either from the community or from the authorities. Identity cards are vital in Egyptian society, and converts from Islam to Christianity face serious problems because they are unable to change the religion listed on their ID cards to show their new faith. This makes it very difficult for them to live as Christians, and means that their children are also automatically considered Muslims.

Barnabas Aid projects in Egypt include:

Feeding needy families (Ref. 11-220)
Women’s training centres (Ref. 11-706)
Self-sufficiency for former pig farmers (Ref. 11-819)
School for garbage village children (Ref. 11-599)
Please Pray:
  • Pray that the Lord will bring justice to His faithful people in Egypt.

  • Pray for all those Christians who have been injured or have lost family, friends and property in the attacks in 2009, that they may be able to love and forgive their enemies and that their witness will open the eyes of those who persecute them.

  • Pray that Egypt will grant recognition of their new faith to converts from Islam to Christianity and will allow them to live openly as Christians.
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Praying for the Persecuted Church in Lent - Egypt

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christian, persecution, charity, church, persecuted, sookhdeo, Islam

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Daily prayer

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  • Cry out to the Lord for Christians in the Central African Republic (CAR) who have been driven from their homes by the violence that has engulfed their country. Attacks by Islamist Séléka militants and retaliation from “anti-balaka” militias has generated a huge humanitarian crisis in which around two million people, many of them Christians, are in need of emergency assistance. Give thanks for the work of Barnabas partners who have been providing food rations to hundreds of displaced believers in the capital, Bangui, and distributing food, medicines, clothing and seeds to thousands in various regions. Pray that the aid will reach those who need it most, and that the Lord will comfort the relatives and friends of the thousands who have been killed in the fighting. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed 2 hours ago

  • “Jesus Christ performed tremendous miracles in all our lives through this Shalom Camp.” A pastor spoke of how God had worked through a Barnabas-sponsored weekend Bible camp for persecuted Christians in Sri Lanka. The camp was attended by believers from five different churches that had been the target of threats or attacks by Buddhist or Hindu extremists. The participants heard teaching on the Biblical basis for persecution and took part in group discussions; they came away refreshed and encouraged, and for many the camp was a time of great spiritual renewal. Give thanks to the Lord for the peace He has brought to these persecuted believers, and ask that the weekend will continue to bear much fruit in their lives. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Wed, Apr 2014 00:00

  • Pray for a church leader in Sri Lanka, S.S. Johnpillai, who was threatened at gunpoint by attackers who claimed to be Special Forces officers. The minister was in a hut next to his church building in Guadalupe, Trincomolee when, he said, the men “appeared out of nowhere”. The intruders put a gun to Johnpillai’s head and accused him of holding a Communion service in honour of the founder of the Tamil Tigers, the government’s opponents in the country’s long and bloody civil war. The government had that day made it a criminal offence to commemorate the group. The gunmen ignored Johnpillai’s protests that he had not dedicated Communion to the group’s founder, and they threatened to shoot him. Ask the Lord to support and strengthen Johnpillai as he recovers from this terrifying ordeal. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Tue, Apr 2014 00:00

  • Lift up to the Lord persecuted Christians in Sri Lanka, where at least 65 anti-Christian incidents took place during 2013, including repeat attacks on several believers and their property in October 2013. However, a Sri Lankan government minister from a Buddhist nationalist party denied the accounts, saying that they might be “made up”. The minister claimed that Sri Lankans are “one family … trying to live together after a long civil war”. Pray that the Sri Lankan government will recognise the danger that our brothers and sisters face from militant Buddhists and that the authorities will provide effective protection for vulnerable Christians. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Mon, Apr 2014 00:00

  • Condemned Christian mother Aasia Bibi’s final appeal hearing is scheduled to take place tomorrow (14 April) having been deferred twice. She was sentenced to death for blasphemy in November 2010 having been falsely accused of insulting Muhammad following an argument with Muslim co-workers. Aasia has been languishing in jail since the accusation was made in June 2009. Pray that her appeal will finally go ahead and that the judges will have the courage to acquit and release Aasia; there are concerns that they may give in to pressure from hardline Islamists who have been calling for her execution. Pray that Aasia, her husband and children will know the Lord’s peace as they await the verdict. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sun, Apr 2014 00:00

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