• New video: Family

    Check out this video reflection from Naomi and Jamie (and a few others too) on the theme of family. As Christians we see the Church as a family – we’re brothers and sisters in Christ, united through our faith in Jesus. This video is an insight into the persecuted church around the world and the real challenges some of our church family are going through.

    We made this as part of Youthscape’s Together Apart series of resources, you can check them out here (they are all free)…

    Once you’ve watched the video, think through these questions:

    1. What defines family for you?
    We’ve all got different families. Some of us might have grown up with just one, or no, parents, whilst others of us have mum, dad, brothers, sisters, pet dog and a massive extended family too. Think through your experiences of family and how they have impacted you. What would your ideal family look like?

    2. What is God’s idea of family?
    Being a Christian gives us a massive shift in our understanding of what family means. 1 John 3:1 says ‘See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children
    of God’. Accepting Jesus means we get a new Father, but that also means we get a new family too. Our love of God, and His Spirit in us, gives us, as Christians, a connection or bond that Biblical writers liken to family. God’s idea of family isn’t simply about biology, or even a geographic proximity. It goes beyond all of that… it’s something much bigger.

    3. How does this effect how you view your own family, and your church family?
    We all know that we don’t get to choose our families. We have to stick with what we’ve got, through good and bad! That’s true of our church family as much as our biological families. Think about Hadija in the story. Her biological family rejected her, but a lady from her church family adopted her – and gave her a whole new life – amazing. Her idea of family has been redefined and changed. Is God also calling us to widen our perspectives and see our global church family as important as the people we see each week on a Sunday at church! What do you think?

    Pray now…

    • Thank God for the good experiences you have had of family. Pray for those people you consider family/like family and the good influences and ways they have impacted you.
    • Ask God to help you see and care for His Church – the family He is building.
    • Pray for Hadija and Melina. Thanks God for their family and ask that many others risking it all to follow Him would know a loving, caring and supportive church family.

    Want to do something to support your church family?

    Join the Blackout and get sponsored to give up something you love for those like Hadija who are prepared to lose everything for Jesus. Raise money and prayer. Choose what to give up, for how long and when! Sign up and we’ll send you an awesome fundraising pack in the post!

  • Watch Standing Strong Online now…

    Watch our live event, Standing Strong Online 2020, to hear and see inspiring stories of courageous faith from Syria, Nigeria and China, with worship led by Tim Hughes. The evening was aired lived on Saturday 3rd October, but you watch the stream below to stand with the persecuted church in prayer and hear first-hand how God is working. Catch up below with all the testimonies, worship and prayer during evening.

    Want to do something in response? Choose to lose

    Could you get sponsored to choose to lose something you love for a short time to raise vital funds for Christians like those featured in Standing Strong Online who have lost out because of their faith in Jesus? Sign up and we’ll send you an awesome fundraising pack in the post!

  • 100,000 reasons to be thankful during the Covid-19 crisis

    Your gifts and prayers have meant a milestone has been reached in Asia – 100,000 believers have been given crucial Covid-19 food and aid so far! Many of these Christians are left at the back of the queue when aid is distributed.

    Thank you so much for your support and prayers.

    Here are some things you can do now as a response…

  • Missing a festival or youth camp?

    One of the things we’re going to miss most over the summer is going to a bunch of festivals and camps where we get to hang out with mates in all kinds of venues and get inspired to follow Jesus with greater passion and depth. With festivals and camps cancelled loads of our friends are hosting their events online, which is great – we’ll see you at some of them – but we will massively miss not being able to be in a big tent or venue with hundreds or thousands of others, singing out our love of Jesus.

    And we’re not alone in that. Around the world, young Christians spend time away at camps to learn more about Jesus, many of which will have had to be cancelled too. For us in the UK, these events may seem like a bit of a lifeline – a high faith point in our years. But just imagine how important they would be if you would normally never be able to speak about your faith, or even had to go to a secret church.

    In Malaysia, a largely Muslim country where the minority of Christians face discrimination when it comes to accessing government services, it is technically illegal for Malay people to leave Islam. Pre lockdown, Open Doors partners were running youth camps to help encourage and strengthen the faith of Christian young people.

    If you’re feeling a bit nostalgic about old times at Soul Survivor, New Wine, Dreaming the Impossible or Limitless, then check out the video to see what camps for Malaysian young people look like…


    • What will you miss most about not going to a festival or camp this summer?
    • What differences could you see between the Malaysian camp in the video and a camp or festival you’ve been to?
    • Did you hear how some of the young people reacted when seeing a Bible (they kissed it)? How do you view your Bible?
    • Did you hear what Pastor Lukas said about having access to a Bible? If we don’t read it for ourselves, if we rely on hearing what others think about it, we may never live our ‘true life’. What do you think he meant by that? How can reading the Bible help you live your true life?

    Pray now…

    • Jump to the final section of the video and pause on the prayer points screen. Pray through the different prayer needs.

    New, free resource: Secret Church!

    Want to experience just some of what it’s like to be church as a secret community of believers? Get our new version of Secret Church to journey with hidden believers, seeing how they worship, learn from the Bible, pray and be community together. Plus, we’ve created the resource to work over a video chat – so it’s completely lockdown friendly!

  • Eritrea: Paul’s brave faith in prison

    Paul* from Eritrea was imprisoned for his Christian beliefs and spent ten years behind bars, where he was put under pressure to sign a document renouncing his faith. He tells his story in this short animation.

    What’s it like in Eritrea?

    Eritrea is ranked at number 6 on the 2020 Open Doors World Watch List. In Eritrea, anybody who is believed to have criticised the government is likely to be severely punished – and following an unapproved Christian denomination is considered to be anti-government. This means that hundreds of Christians are arrested and imprisoned, including 141 in May 2019 and 30 the following month. Some prisoners are held in shipping containers in scorching temperatures.

    Pray now…

    • Thank God for Paul’s release and pray he would know God’s comfort and guidance.
    • For strength and courage for the hundreds of other Christians in prison in Eritrea.
    • For a new era of religious freedom in Eritrea so Christians will be able to meet and worship without fear.

    *Name changed for security reasons

  • Video: Kim Sang-Hwa shares her story

    Kim Sang-Hwa* became a Christian as a teenager in North Korea. She grew up knowing just how dangerous following Jesus could be: “We have a saying in North Korea, ‘When three of us are meeting, one of us is a spy and will report to the government.’”

    Many North Korean Christians can’t even tell their families about their faith – it’s just too dangerous, and teachers sometimes ask students about their parents activities. You see, if the government finds out that you’re a Christian, it’s likely that you’ll be sent to a labour camp. Most prisoners never leave, and the conditions are worse than we can possibly imagine. Following Jesus takes extraordinary courage in North Korea – it’s been at the top of the World Watch List since 2002. It’s the most dangerous place in the world to be a Christian.

    When she was 12, Sang-Hwa found her parents’ secret Bible. “I threw the book across the room. I had shivers throughout my body. And I was so very afraid. I thought: ‘Wow, we’re all dead now.’”

    She didn’t know what to do – tell the police, her teachers or confront her mum and dad. She put the Bible back to buy some time to think.

    After two anxious weeks, she made the brave decision to ask her father about his faith. And he shared the truth of God’s Word with her.

    As her father talked about the Bible, Kim Sang-Hwa felt the Holy Spirit come over her. Eventually Sang-Hwa made the decision to follow Jesus. She knew how dangerous it was, but she also knew it was the best choice to make, once she was convicted of the truth of the gospel.

    The underground church in North Korea

    More and more North Koreans are making the same courageous decision that Kim Sang-Hwa made. Despite living in a police state and the enormous dangers of being a believer, there is a massive underground church and it is growing. Open Doors estimates that there are 200,000 to 400,000 secret Christians in the country. Tens of thousands of believers are in concentration camps.

    Open Doors secret workers are keeping 60,000 North Korean believers alive with vital food and aid, as well as providing Bibles, broadcasting Christian radio programmes and running safe houses at the Chinese border for those who are able to escape.​

    Pray now…

    Pray for faith, resilience and courage for Christians in North Korea facing unimaginably harsh conditions, and pray for the continuing growth of the secret church. Please pray for Christians in all the countries on the World Watch List, particularly those in the top ten, where following Christ comes with enormous cost.

    Hidden Word: Learn to value the Bible like Kim Sang-Hwa…

    Our innovative resource to help you get inspired by persecuted Christians and learn God’s Word by heart! A series of six weekly devotionals, along with leader guide, challenges and a bunch of awesome memorisation aids!

  • Worth it to walk with Jesus

    Mohan was still at school when he became a Christian. He’s now 21, and the last few years have been hard. His family had to leave their home, community and livelihood – all because they trust in Jesus. But your support means that Open Doors partners could meet with them, encourage them in their faith and provide them with goats, materials and funds to rebuild their lives.

    Watch the video to see what life is like when you decide to choose to follow Jesus in India. Despite persecution, God is doing amazing things – thanks to Mohan, three other families have decided to become Christians too.

    Pray now…

    • Thank God for the perseverance and faith of Mohan and his family
    • Ask for continued strength, courage and support for them as they continue to follow Jesus
    • Lift up other families that have converted and pray for boldness and security.

    Join the Blackout to stand with silenced Christians in India…

    Sign up to go screen free and get sponsored to shut down your devices for anything from 6 to 48 hours. Raise money, prayer and awareness for silenced, persecuted Christians like Mohan and his family. Sign up and get a free pack!

  • This is their home

    Eight years of war has has taken its toll in Syria. While cities have been devastated, millions have fled and been displaced, tens of thousands have been killed. But some chose to remain – like Pastor Abdalla in Aleppo.

    Watch this video to learn more about he and his church stepped up and starting bringing hope in the midst of conflict and violence.

    Pastor Abdalla helped establish a ‘Centre of Hope’ in Aleppo, a place which provides training, distributes food, runs youth and children’s activities, teaches English, disciples new believers, provides business loans and runs marriage and parenting courses. There are now 16 similar centres across Syria, and they simply would not be possible with your prayers, fundraising and gifts! So thank you!

    Pray now…

    Heavenly Father, we ask for Your peace in Syria. Bring an end to war and violence there, that Your people may flourish. Be with all those who have no place to call home. Strengthen Your church, our family, that they may continue to bring Your hope to their communities. Be with Pastor Abdalla and others running Centres of Hope across the country. Give them the resources they need and help these centres become places of light and transformation where many come to know and love you. Amen.

    Join the Blackout for Christians like Abdallah!

    Sign up to go screen free and get sponsored to shut down your devices for anything from 6 to 48 hours. Raise money, prayer and awareness for courageous Christians like Pastor Abdalla who has stuck with Jesus despite attempts to silence his amazing faith. Sign up and get a free pack!

  • This will change my life

    Nora* holds an incredible title: she is the first indigenous woman from a Muslim background to be ordained as a priest in Malaysia. But her journey to serve God has not been easy. “When I learnt about Jesus, I decided to follow Him because I believe He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. I know that this decision will change my life forever. But, because of God and with [my husband] Daniel by my side, I am prepared to face it. Whatever happens, Daniel and I will take it as God’s test and training for our faith.”

    Watch the video above to hear more of Nora’s story of brave faith.

    Act now to See. Change.

    Nora is risking everything because of her choice to follow Jesus. Being a young woman from Malaysia, she is doubly vulnerable to persecution because of her faith and gender. Check out our new campaign to see how you can speak up, pray and raise money for change!

    *Name has been changed for security reasons

  • Responding to persecution

    Meet Abishek – a local partner of Open Doors in India. Abishek’s* role is to visit and encourage believers in India who suffer persecution.

    “When somebody is in a struggle, maybe somebody is persecuted or attacked in the field, as an Open Doors partner, that is my first duty to collect the information from the field. And as soon as we get the information, if that place is good and not too sensitive, then we go to that place directly and we meet with the believers.”

    Abishek shares some stories of how extreme persecution against Christians is becoming in India… Please pray for Abishek as he tries to support those who suffer extreme persecution. Pray for those he visits and supports. Ask God for strength, comfort and hope. Pray for the persecutors, that they would know they are doing wrong, and would come to know Jesus themselves. Pray for the leaders of India, and ask that they would look to defend the rights of all people.

    Get inspired to live out your faith with Guts and Courage…

    Choosing to follow Jesus takes courage in India. Get your free copy of our new Guts and Courage resource to learn more about the places in the world where Christians face pressure, violence and intimidation for their faith and get inspired to live out your walk with God with more boldness…

  • We support people who are beaten, tortured,
    imprisoned, falsely accused, and hated simply for following Jesus.