The Voice of the Martyrs USA: www.persecution.com
“Those who have left the deepest impression on this sin cursed earth have been men and women of prayer. You will find that prayer has been the mighty power that has moved not only God, but man.” D L Moody
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
IRAQ — Christians Martyred — Agence France-Presse
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell[a] in the house of the LORD Forever.
Three Christians have been killed in Mosul recently, and community leaders warn that violence will increase leading to the March 7 parliamentary election, according to Agence France-Presse (AFP). On Feb. 16, unidentified gunmen shot two Christian students with an automatic weapon. Police told AFP that Zia Toma, a 21-year-old engineering student, was killed in the shooting and Ramsin Shmael, a 22-year-old pharmacy student, was wounded. Both men were Assyrian Christians, according to police. The violence is thought to be related to the upcoming parliamentary election, in which the vote of minority Christians could be a factor between Arab-Kurd rivals. “We don’t want elections, we don’t want representatives, we don’t want our rights, we just want to be alive,” said Baasil Abdul Noor, a priest at Mar Behnam church in Al-Arabi neighborhood, where the shooting occurred. The student’s murder occurred one day after gunmen killed shop owner Fatukhi Munir, an Assyrian Catholic, in his business. On Feb. 14, another shop owner, Rayan Salem Elias, was shot to death outside his home; Elias was a Chaldean Christian. Pray for those who mourn these murdered believers. Pray that the killers might come to know Christ as their savior. Ask God to embolden the Christian community in Mosul to proclaim the gospel even while being persecuted, and pray that they will be filled with Christ’s peace during these difficult times.
IRAN — Arrests Continue — Middle East Concern / VOM Canada
But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death,
On Jan. 11, seven Christians were detained in the city of Shiraz, Iran. A court reportedly set bail for each of the believers at the US equivalent of $25,000. Six of the Christians are converts from Islam. Meanwhile, three Iranian Christians remain in detention after their arrest by security forces in Pakdasht on Dec. 24. A sister of one of the three detained Christians was arrested in the city of Isfahan a few days later, along with another Christian convert from Islam. All of those detained are reportedly being denied family visits and access to legal representation. Pray for the release of these Christians. Pray that they will grow into a deeper relationship with Christ as they embrace the fellowship of his sufferings. Pray that the Lord will give strength and encouragement to their families.
INDIA — Church Burned — VOM Contacts
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.” Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler[a] And from the perilous pestilence. He shall cover you with His feathers, And under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler. You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
On Feb. 18, a church in Chittor district, Andhra Pradesh, was burned by an unknown arson, according to The Voice of the Martyrs contacts. Damage to the church is so extensive that a new church will have to be built in its place. The incident occurred at dawn, when a person or group of people broke into the church, doused it with kerosene and set it on fire, burning the thatched-roof church to the ground. The incident is under investigation. Pray for peace in Andhra Pradesh. Ask God to encourage the pastor and members of this church. Pray that God will provide a way for this church to be rebuilt.
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Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.