VOM–USA Prayer Update for February 19, 2010

The Voice of the Martyrs USA: www.persecution.com
“The two prerequisites to successful Christian living are vision and passion, both of which are born in and maintained by prayer. The ministry of preaching is opened to few; the ministry of prayer – the highest ministry of all human offices – is open to all.” Leonard Ravenhill
praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints Ephesians 6:18

LAOS — Christians Forced from Homes — Compass Direct News

Hebrews 11:25–26
choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for he looked to the reward.

In January, 48 Christians were forced from their homes in Katin village, Saravan province, Laos. After gathering for Sunday worship, the believers were expelled from their church at gunpoint and taken to an open field. Officials then confiscated personal belongings from 11 Christians’ homes, and six of the homes were later destroyed. Officials also took a pig, worth the equivalent of six weeks’ salary, from one of the believers. When the believers refused to renounce their faith, they were forced to leave the village. Police have been posted at the entrance to the village to prevent the Christians from returning home or retrieving their valuables. At last report, the believers were sleeping in the woods with little food or survival supplies. Ask God to protect and provide for the 48 Christians who were expelled. Pray that they will grow stronger in their faith. Also pray that the Christians who renounced their faith will turn to Jesus for strength and boldness. Pray that officials and villagers will stop persecuting Christians in Katin village.

UZBEKISTAN — Uzbek Christians Targeted — Forum 18 News

Acts 5:29
But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men.

Uzbek Christians from the Baptist Council of Churches have faced arrests and physical abuse in recent weeks. On Jan. 18, Tohar Haydarov was arrested in Syrdarya region on charges of producing or storing drugs — charges local Christians insist are fabricated. Police reportedly threatened Tohar and pressured him to renounce his faith. When he refused, police allegedly planted drugs on him. According to police reports, officials later found additional drugs at his apartment. However, the search was not monitored by witnesses. The drugs found on Tohar and in his apartment were tested the same evening, raising suspicions about how the drugs could have been tested so quickly. At a court hearing three days after his arrest, Tohar told believers that police had beaten him and forced him to sign papers. His face was swollen, and he could barely walk. At last report, police were trying to charge Tohar under an article of the Criminal Code that calls for a 10–20 year prison sentence. In another incident, a group of believers who gathered for fellowship on Jan. 24 in Almalyk City were rounded up by police and taken to the police station. The Christians had gathered at the home of Sergei Brislavski. Police searched Sergei’s home and confiscated Bibles, songbooks and CDs. Three of the 19 believers were treated roughly by officers. A doctor who saw them the next day said the believers had bruises on their shoulders and around their necks. Local Christians believe the police are preparing a criminal case against some of them for repeated violations of the Religion Law. In April 2009, some of the same Christians, including Sergei's family, were fined 50 times the minimum monthly wage for “attracting believers of one confession to another.” Pray that the truth of Tohar’s case will be revealed and that he will look to Christ for strength. Pray that the Christians in Almalyk will echo Peter’s determination to obey God rather than man, and pray that they will not face criminal charges or fines.

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Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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