Archive

  • India

    Leader: Prime Minister Narendra Modi
    Population: 1.4 billion (66.2 million Christians)
    World Watch List Rank: 10

    “Then, my family and people from the village got to know that I go to church every Sunday. I met intense opposition – ‘You are a shame to the family; our community people detest us because you go to church. Either leave Jesus or forget the relationship you have with us.’ This was what my parents told me.”
    Tara, 15 year old Christian from India

    The basics

    Hindu extremists want to see India free of Christians by the end of 2021.

    Hindu nationalists see being Hindu as part of Indian identity – following any other faith is seen as a betrayal. The government, led by a Hindu nationalist party, turns a blind eye to attacks on Christians and other minorities. Christians make up less than five per cent of the population in India, and in rural areas they can be particularly isolated. They face beatings, false imprisonment, and even death because of their faith.

    With the government of India is allowing violent attacks to take place against Christians, and an extremist group linked with the leading political party actively trying to wipe out the church, it isn’t surprising that Christians in India are facing horrific levels of persecution. Open Doors church partners estimate that almost 12,500 Christians were physically attacked in 2018 because of their faith. Several states in India have adopted anti-conversion laws, and the ruling party have made it clear that they would like to bring in these laws nationwide. Such laws are often used as an excuse to disrupt church services and harass Christians and make it incredibly difficult for Christians to share their faith with others.

    But people are coming to know Jesus, many in miraculous and amazing ways. See Tara’s story below for an example..

    Main threats to Christians

    • Violent extremist attacks
    • Anti-conversion laws
    • Expulsion from families and communities

    The facts

    • Those in power see being Indian as being Hindu, so Indians that are Christian are despised.
    • A Hindu extremist group linked to a leading political party is actively trying to wipe out the church – they’ve set a target of 2021.
    • 12,500 Christians and about 100 churches were attacked last year.
    • India still has a strict caste system that orders society. Many Christians come from the poorest caste, the dalits or untouchables. They are despised by others in higher up, more respectable castes.
    • Violence against Christians is turning increasing brutal and extreme.

    Where is it?

    Things to pray for…

    • For protection for Christians from Hindu backgrounds
    • Open Doors partners are helping Christians to understand their legal rights – pray this will be effective in helping them to defend themselves from false accusations
    • Many are coming to faith in India through incredible healings – pray that God would continue to use His people to bring healing and hope to others.

    Videos

    Meet Tara…

    The good news: How we’re helping…

    Open Doors works with local churches to strengthen the Indian church through providing emergency aid (Rapid Response teams are often first on the scene after violent attacks), persecution survival training, Bibles, livelihood development, advocacy support and legal training.

    Latest news and articles on India…

    Click the India tag below for a list of the latest articles and news on the country…

  • wwl

  • The Problem

    Followers of Jesus around the world are shining God’s love and light. The church is alive, active and living out God’s mission. And that’s why Christians are being persecuted.

    Around the world, 1 in every 8 Christians face high, very high or extreme levels of persecution. That means they can face death, horrific violence, arrest, torture, imprisonment, harassment or rejection simply because of their choice to follow Jesus.

    For us Christians in the West, living out our faith can seem very different. We don’t gather in secret. We don’t fear that our attendance at a worship night might get us arrested. Our grades aren’t marked down because of our beliefs. We can openly talk about God and share his love with others without worrying we could face prison.

    But our relationship with Jesus connects us to secret believers around the world. We share the same heartbeat. Together, we are God’s Church. Brothers and sisters – part of the same body, all seeking to show the love we’ve received to the world around us. And when one part of the body suffers, we all do.

    2020 World Watch List

    The 2020 Open Doors World Watch List ranks the 50 countries where persecution against Christians is most severe. The map here lists all 50 countries that appear on the list, but you can find out some more specific details about the top ten at the posts below. Have a look and join us in prayer for followers of Jesus who are facing extreme persecution.

    Country Profiles

    Persecution Level:

      Extreme:Severe   Very High:Absolute   High:Moderate

    The Problem

    North Korea

    For yet another year North Korea is officially the worst place in the world to be a Christian...
    The Problem

    Afghanistan

    In Afghanistan Christian converts face massive pressure from extremists...

    Key trends and facts

    Each year the World Watch List reveals some depressingly dark facts. This year is no different. But behind the facts are also signs of hope. Read the points below to get the full picture.

    What you need to know: Key facts…

    • Worldwide, persecution is rising.
    • Over 260 million Christians experience high levels of persecution.
    • At least 9,488 churches and Christian buildings were attacked.
    • More than 3,711 Christians were detained without trial, arrested, sentenced and imprisoned.
    • Last year, at least 2,983 Christians were killed for their faith in Jesus Christ.

    Want more detail…

    In the World Watch List Top 50 countries alone, 260 million Christians face high or extreme levels of persecution, up from 245 million in 2019. What’s more, Open Doors estimates that there are at least a further 50 million Christians facing high levels of persecution in 23 countries that haven’t made it Into the top 50.

    And the level of persecution is getting worse.

    In 2020, 45 of the 50 World Watch List countries are places where Christians are at risk of very high or extreme levels of persecution. That’s five more countries than in 2019.

    Altogether, 1 in 8 Christians worldwide face persecution measured as extreme, very high or high.

    Throughout 2019 fewer Christians were killed for their faith, but more churches were attacked (partly due to China stepping up efforts to close churches).

    In sub-Saharan Africa different radical Islamist groups are taking advantage of conflict, instability and poverty to set up home in states like Mali (29), Niger (50) and Burkina Faso (28). In these weak and fragile states many Christian communities are left without protection from their governments.

    Women and girls have been especially vulnerable. In Pakistan (5), Nigeria (12), and Egypt (16) hundreds of Christian girls and young women – especially ages 13-20 – are abducted, raped and forcibly married and converted.

    Christians in the Middle East are still facing tough times. Although some Christians in Syria (11) and Iraq (15) are beginning to rebuild their shattered communities, they remain at risk. There are signs that Islamic State is regrouping, while Iranian-backed Shiite militias continue to threaten, harass and intimidate Christians. And the Turkish incursion into north-eastern Syria has directly affected 40,000 or more Christians in the region.

    But, prayer and action change things. In Pakistan in 2019, Asia Bibi, who spent eight years on death row on a false blasphemy charge, was finally flown to freedom in Canada. There she was reunited with her family, although they all still live ‘under the radar’ for their own safety. Her vindication and release was a much-needed encouragement for the country’s beleaguered Christian community. Finally, justice had been done.

    The World Watch List explained

    The World Watch List (WWL) is an independently audited ranking of 50 countries where persecution of Christians for religious reasons is worst. The list covers persecution of Christians of all denominations in that entire country. The focus is on persecution for faith, not persecution for political, economic, social, ethnic or accidental reasons.

    Open Doors has been monitoring persecution of Christians worldwide since the 1970s and today, the World Watch List provides a comprehensive snapshot of the problem facing many followers of Jesus across the world.

    Most importantly though, the list isn’t simply an academic exercise. Behind the stats and figures lie the fate of over 100 million members of our worldwide Church family, an essential tool in helping us pray and act for change.

    Helpful Resources

    Our 2020 World Watch List resources are pretty awesome - we have a new World Watch Map, plus a special session for a youth group to work though (make sure you grab the associated downloads too). If you're in the UK you can order all of these items in the post for free too (except the downloads folder) at opendoorsyouth.org/guts

    Open Doors Youth 2020 World Watch List Map...
    Download now...
    World Watch List 2020 Youth Session...
    Download now...
    World Watch List 2020 Big Map (use with youth session)...
    Download now...
    World Watch List 2020 Youth Session Video: Mohan's Story...
    Download now...
    World Watch List 2020 Youth Session Video: The Top Five...
    Download now...
    World Watch List 2020 Youth Session Video: Kim Sang-Hwa's Story...
    Download now...
    World Watch List 2020 Youth Session Video: Algerian Church Raid...
    Download now...
    World Watch List 2020 Youth Session Extras: Algerian Youth Texts...
    Download now...
    World Watch List 2020 Youth Session Video: Eleanor's prayer journal...
    Download now...
    The Problem

    Somalia

    This East African country is No. 3 on the current World Watch List...
    Give

    Help solve the problem

    Give a Bible or send a relief pack to help Christians facing persecution now!

    How you can help

    Want to help? Brilliant. There’s loads of ways to get involved and support your persecuted family around the world.

    First off, pray. Brother Andrew, the guy who started Open Doors, said “Our prayers can go where we cannot…there are no borders, no prison walls, no doors that are closed to us when we pray.” So, spend time praying regularly for the church in parts of the world where following Jesus is restricted.
    Get the latest prayer news…

    Secondly, tell other people about the injustices facing Christians around the world. It’s vital that the church in the West comes to know and understand what is happening… You could tell people simply by sharing our posts or getting involved and running an event or switching on to one of our campaigns… it’s up to you…

    Thirdly, you can raise money or give. Just £10 will bring hope by providing a Bible to a young Christian at risk of being persecuted for following Jesus. Check out Blackout our sponsored digital fast, or raise money doing something you love…

    Read and share our news…
    Find out what you can do…
    Send a gift of hope…

    The Problem

    Afiniki's story

    Afiniki's life changed forever after a suicide bomber crashed into her church...
    The Problem

    Pasha's story

    Pasha is a secret Christian in Iran who had an amazing dream where he met Jesus!
    The Problem

    Jong-Cheol's story

    Jong-Cheol was an 11 year old North Korean boy who lived on the streets...
    The Problem

    Sofia's story

    Sofia is from Colombia. When she was 9 her Mum and Dad were killed by rebels...
    The Problem

    Yohannes' story

    Imagine being arrested simply for going to a mate's wedding...
    The Problem

    Fatima's story

    I am unto death a Christian. Fatima's story is amazing and shocking...
  • Key trends and facts

    Each year the World Watch List reveals some depressingly dark facts. This year is no different. But behind the facts are also signs of hope. Read the points below to get the full picture.

    What you need to know: Key facts…

    • Worldwide, persecution is rising.
    • Over 260 million Christians experience high levels of persecution.
    • At least 9,488 churches and Christian buildings were attacked.
    • More than 3,711 Christians were detained without trial, arrested, sentenced and imprisoned.
    • Last year, at least 2,983 Christians were killed for their faith in Jesus Christ.

    Want more detail…

    In the World Watch List Top 50 countries alone, 260 million Christians face high or extreme levels of persecution, up from 245 million in 2019. What’s more, Open Doors estimates that there are at least a further 50 million Christians facing high levels of persecution in 23 countries that haven’t made it Into the top 50.

    And the level of persecution is getting worse.

    In 2020, 45 of the 50 World Watch List countries are places where Christians are at risk of very high or extreme levels of persecution. That’s five more countries than in 2019.

    Altogether, 1 in 8 Christians worldwide face persecution measured as extreme, very high or high.

    Throughout 2019 fewer Christians were killed for their faith, but more churches were attacked (partly due to China stepping up efforts to close churches).

    In sub-Saharan Africa different radical Islamist groups are taking advantage of conflict, instability and poverty to set up home in states like Mali (29), Niger (50) and Burkina Faso (28). In these weak and fragile states many Christian communities are left without protection from their governments.

    Women and girls have been especially vulnerable. In Pakistan (5), Nigeria (12), and Egypt (16) hundreds of Christian girls and young women – especially ages 13-20 – are abducted, raped and forcibly married and converted.

    Christians in the Middle East are still facing tough times. Although some Christians in Syria (11) and Iraq (15) are beginning to rebuild their shattered communities, they remain at risk. There are signs that Islamic State is regrouping, while Iranian-backed Shiite militias continue to threaten, harass and intimidate Christians. And the Turkish incursion into north-eastern Syria has directly affected 40,000 or more Christians in the region.

    But, prayer and action change things. In Pakistan in 2019, Asia Bibi, who spent eight years on death row on a false blasphemy charge, was finally flown to freedom in Canada. There she was reunited with her family, although they all still live ‘under the radar’ for their own safety. Her vindication and release was a much-needed encouragement for the country’s beleaguered Christian community. Finally, justice had been done.

  • Faces behind the figures

    The World Watch List is about the big picture – the facts and figures, the global trends. But the big picture is made up of millions of individual faces. Here are six representatives of persecuted Christians from around the world who really need your prayers and support.

    wwl_nkman11. A house church Christian in North Korea

    An Open Doors partner visits 12 Christian families to encourage them. “They have only one Bible in the whole group, and each family must take turns to borrow it,” he reports. “They hide the Bible in a secret place. Once a month, three families get together and worship together; once a year all believers get together in a mountain valley to worship and have secret fellowship.”

    “We always remember all the prayer support from all over the world,” says one of their leaders. “It encourages us to live another victorious day in Christ Jesus.”

    • Pray for peace and protection for the Christians of North Korea as they meet in utmost secrecy.

    Discover more about persecution in North Korea…

    2. A Christian refugee

    In some ways 10-year-old Maryam is just like any other girl. She goes to school, plays with her friends, runs errands for her mother. She sings and plays her guitar. But Maryam lives in a refugee camp in Erbil. Her family fled from Mosul when Islamic State invaded. Thanks to the help of Open Doors supporters, they, along with thousands of others, have been helped with food, accommodation and heating. But her dearest wish is to return home, to the life she had before everything was torn apart.

    “Please pray specially that we can return home,” she says. “Because the most precious thing for us is that we can return home – then we can go back to our schools, we can return to our beautiful churches. And pray that our situation will improve and that we won’t grow weary or have doubts.”

    • Pray for the safety of displaced Christians. Pray that one day they will be able to return and rebuild.

    Discover more about about persecution in Iraq…

    wwl_leader3. A church leader facing prison

    “The persecution and tribulation is ongoing,” writes a group of pastors from Eritrea. “As some Christians are released from prison, others are going in for the sake of the gospel. We accept and understand that this is how the gospel of Jesus Christ is to be preached, and we thank God for that.

    “We have no shortage of food and financial support because of your obedience to support us in all our needs. We are very thankful for that and we hope things will change soon so that we are able to give thanks to God and gather with you freely in our homeland.”

    • Pray for Christians in prison for their faith, that they will stay strong, keep the faith, and bear witness to those around them.

    Discover about persecution in Eritrea

    wwl_violence14. A victim of violence in sub-Saharan Africa

    When al-Shabaab militants from Somalia crossed into Kenya and attacked the university campus at Garissa, Frederick Gitonga (21), the Chairman of the Christian Students’ Union, survived by hiding under his bed.

    “I praise God that some survived, many in truly miraculous ways. However, we are deeply traumatised, broken, and in need of much prayer,” he says.

    “Please pray for us. Pray for the surviving students to heal not just in body, but in mind too. Many saw sights too horrible to describe and those memories can harm if not attended to. I pray that they each get adequate psychological help.”

    • Pray for all Christians who have witnessed or experienced violent persecution – may they receive comfort and healing.

    Read more about Frederick Gitonga

    wwl_ca5. A Muslim background believer in an Islamic State

    “All of the believers in our area are secret and persecuted,” says a secret believer from Central Asia. “I kept my new faith a secret from my family for two months.”

    The reason for her secrecy is that her father is a Mullah – a Muslim cleric. When she told him of her new faith he forbade her from meeting with other Christians.

    “I met with them secretly for a year before my father found out. He shouted loud and long… but I had made my choice. I had decided to follow the joy and peace that Jesus brings. To this day my father will not speak to me.”

    • Pray for courage and strength for Muslim-background believers across the world.

    wwl_hindu16. A Hindu background believer

    Violent attacks on Christians and churches in India increased in 2015. Schools have been destroyed, pastors beaten, church services attacked by mobs. Emboldened by an increasingly hardline Hindu government, some states have passed ‘anti-conversion laws’.

    Open Doors’ ‘Standing Strong Through the Storm’ seminars help believers like Ajay face persecution. When Ajay became a Christian his Hindu father was furious. He was beaten for reading his Bible, then forcibly married to a Hindu girl. (The plan backfired – his wife decided to follow Jesus.) Ajay’s father disowned his son, his brothers threatened to kill him and the couple were thrown out of the house. He has never gone a day without some form of persecution, but Ajay is not downhearted: “God is blessing me in countless ways!” he says.

    • Pray for believers from a Hindu background and for the effectiveness of Open Doors training around the world.

    Please note: Bar Frederick, names have been changed and images are not of the real people making the statements, they are only for illustrative purposes!

  • World Watch List 2016: Key facts

    Get to grips with some of the basic facts we can learn from this year’s World Watch List…

    • The persecution of Christians has increased… across every region in which Open Doors works.
    • Religious extremism – Islamic, Hindu and Buddhist – is the greatest source of persecution of Christians.
    • North Korea is still the most difficult place in the world to be a Christian.
    • As well as in the Middle East, Islamic extremism has a second and powerfully destructive hub in sub-Saharan Africa.
    • Islamic State (IS) violence is radicalising Muslims and therefore increasing pressure on Christians in many countries.
    • Conflict and failed nation states result in increased levels of persecution.
    • According to the UN, a record 60 million people have been displaced. A great number of these are Christians, especially in places like Syria, Iraq and Nigeria, where anti-Christian violence has driven hundreds of thousands of Christians from their homes.
    • Gender violence is a weapon of persecution: women and girls are on the frontline.
    • Open Doors records show that worldwide there were well over 7,000 Christians killed for faith-related reasons in the reporting period. That is a rise of almost 3,000 in comparison to conservative figures from the WWL 2015 period. This is excluding North Korea, Syria and Iraq, where accurate records do not exist.
    • Around 2,400 churches were attacked or damaged, which is over double the number for the previous year.
    • In six countries the level of persecution increased seriously (by 7 points or more): Eritrea, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan and Kuwait.
    • In nine countries the level of persecution increased significantly (by 5 to 6 points): India, Ethiopia, UAE, Bangladesh, Bahrain, Yemen, Kenya, Indonesia and Niger.
  • The year of the refugee

    Perhaps the defining image of the past year has been that of the refugee. Their images fill the news reports, huddled into perilously overcrowded boats, eking out an existence in refugee camps, desperately queuing at border posts, or trudging across dusty plains carrying the fragments of their lives in plastic bags.

    And darker, even more shocking images: toddlers lying lifeless on Turkish beaches; desperate captives, kneeling at the feet of their black-clad executioners.

    Our impression of the refugee crisis is largely defined by events in the Middle East. Yet the truth is that this is a global phenomenon. Throughout the world, people are on the move – and millions of them are Christians.

    The Middle East

    Syria is the ‘largest displacement crisis globally’ according to the UN. More than half the Syrian population have left their homes; 7.6 million are internally displaced within the country, and 4 million are refugees outside it. Before the war there were some 1.8 million Christians in Syria; now best estimates stand at between 700,000 and 800,000.

    Most of Syria’s refugees have ended up in refugee camps in Turkey, Lebanon or Jordan. But many Christians fear to go into the camps where, in the words of one, ‘we are still a vulnerable minority in a very dangerous place’.

    “You flee to survive and keep your children safe, but that is just as hard in the camps,” said a father in a refugee camp in Lebanon. “It can be tough to find enough to eat and also to stop undesirables preying particularly on our young daughters.”

    Africa

    Syrians feature heavily among the many refugees trying to cross the Mediterranean. But Eritrea is the biggest source of asylum seekers in Europe. According to the Commission on Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea, 5,000 people leave Eritrea every month. The percentage of Christians among these is hard to estimate, but clearly it is very high. Ethiopians also flee their country in large numbers, as do those from Sudan. For Christians, the journey through Islamised North Africa is highly dangerous, as we saw with the barbaric executions of 30 Ethiopian Christians in Libya.

    Then there is Nigeria, where an estimated 2 million people are internally displaced, many of whom are thought to be Christian. In the north, Boko Haram have displaced many thousands, but the hidden story comes from the country’s middle belt, where a campaign of religious/ethnic cleansing by Hausa-Fulani herdsmen has targeted Christians, burning their fields and shops and houses, and forcing them off their land.

    Asia

    South Asia is also struggling with mass-migration. In particular, there are two quiet tragedies today in this region concerning Christians.

    In Pakistan, which has risen to #6 on the 2016 World Watch List, oppression and violence have forced thousands of Christians across the border to Thailand. The UN claims that some 4,000 Pakistani Christians have fled; the real number is thought to be about 10,000. The Thai government refuses them refugee status: they cannot work, are subject to police intimidation and live on handouts.

    Meanwhile, in Myanmar the government continues its war against Christian minority groups such as the Kachin and the Chin. A reported 100,000 Christian refugees have crossed the border to China, with even more internally displaced. They live in camps that offer little protection: abuse is rampant, drugs are common, and many vulnerable young girls are exploited and married off.

    Latin America

    In Colombia, over six million people have been displaced – making it second only to Syria in the numbers of internally displaced people. Though most have fled from war zones, still many Christians are forced out of their communities by paramilitary violence and religious persecution. In Mexico there are just over 281,000 displaced people. A significant proportion of these are Christians, displaced by indigenous tribes, who hate it when people become Christians and reject their tribal traditions.

    Keeping hope alive

    Refugees and internally displaced people (IDPs) lose so much: their homes, jobs, communities, possessions – even their sense of status and identity. But the one thing they dare not lose is hope.

    As one of the 120,000 Iraqi Christians who fled from the Nineveh plain said: “Yes, we have to cope with the trauma of leaving, and sometimes with the dreadful things we have seen, but the hardest thing I find is to keep hope alive that we will ever return – if you feel despair about the future then it is very hard to find the motivation to survive.”

    This is where the presence of Open Doors is so important. With your support, our local partners are providing vital food, medical aid and shelter to tens of thousands of Christians who have been forced to flee their homes, but are too poor or infirm to escape their war-torn nations. We are visiting them, praying with them and assuring them that the global body of Christ has not forgotten them. This is a long-term as well as a global crisis, which is why Open Doors is also investing in long-term support such as trauma counselling, small business loans, and leadership training for church leaders who feel called by God to stay and serve their people – strengthening the church to be the church in the most dangerous places on earth. In this way, said another displaced Iraqi mother, ‘you help to keep our hope alive’

  • Libya

    Leader:Prime Minister Fayiz al-Saraj
    Population: 6.5 million (36,200 Christians)
    World Watch List Rank: 4

    “They were martyred in the name of Jesus Christ. They kept the faith until the last moment. They didn’t deny the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. We are proud of them.”
    The brother of one of 21 Egyptian migrant workers executed in Libya by Islamic State extremists

    The basics

    Libyan Christians have to keep their faith entirely secret, and churches for Libyans are forbidden. It’s illegal to share the gospel with Muslims, and Christians who publicly express their faith or share it with others risk being arrested or attacked by their families and communities. Without a single central government, much of Libya is effectively lawless, adding to the violent persecution and pressure felt by Christians in the country. While migrant Christians are allowed to practise their faith in Libya, many have paid the ultimate price; In 2016 79 Ethiopian and Eritrean refugees were kidnapped by IS militants and 30 of them were killed. Believers who share their faith publicly risk arrest and violence.

    The facts

    • Since the revolution in 2011 the situation for Christians has got worse and worse.
    • The government says all Libyans are Sunni Muslims, though there are an estimated 36,200 Christians (the vast majority of these are migrants and not Libyan nationals).
    • It’s illegal to take Arabic Bibles into Libya or to share the gospel
    • The government has been unable to stop violent extremist groups, like those affiliated with IS, taking control of strategic areas.
    • A key leader has suggested that Christians should be thought of as a threat to national security. Police monitor Christian activity.
    • Migrant workers from other countries are allowed churches, but churches for Libyans are forbidden.
    • Libyan converts may be beaten by family members, whereas Christian migrant workers can face threats and severe violence.

    Where is it?

    Pray this…

    Father God,
    even in places where rules are ignored and injustice is everywhere, Your name is still holy. Even where Your Word is restricted and people struggle to meet to worship, You are still mighty. Strengthen Your Church in Libya. Give them what they need – fresh ways to learn more, meet together and encourage one another. Bring protection so the small Christian community can share Your love. Change the future, so that Libya stops sliding into chaos. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
    Amen.

    Other things to pray for…

    • For protection for Christians in Libya – hundreds are reported to have been abducted by paramilitaries and imprisoned
    • For Christians to find ways to meet together – religious gatherings are illegal for Libyans if they are not Islamic, which makes Libyan believers afraid to meet
    • For ongoing peace talks between different ruling factions to be fruitful, and for a stable and safe Libya to be formed.

    Maizah’s story…

    Libyan Christians from a Muslim background face violence from their families and communities to renounce their faith. Like Maizah.* She and her family fled to Egypt when civil war came to Libya, and there she met a woman who told her about Jesus. Back in Libya, the Christians she secretly met with were arrested and she fled again. She thought her family would protect her when they tracked her down – but they beat her, and tried to force her into marriage with a Muslim. Luckily she managed to get away to a safe house, and is now safe in another country.

    The good news: How we’re helping…

    In cooperation with local partners and churches, Open Doors supports the church in Libya through training, literature distribution, socio-economic development and advocacy.

    Latest news and articles on Libya…

    Click the Libya tag below for a list of the latest articles and news on Libya…

  • Nigeria

    Leader: President Goodluck Jonathan
    Population: 183.5 million (89 million Christians)
    Main Religion: Islam, Christianity
    Government: Federal republic
    Source of Persecution: Islamic extremism
    World Watch List Rank: 10

    The basics

    Thousands of Christians have been killed or abducted by Boko Haram, the militant Islamist group who claim to have established a ‘caliphate’ (Islamic state) in northern Nigeria. On a smaller but no less devastating scale, Christians are also the target of Hausa-Fulani Muslim herdsmen, who have destroyed hundreds of churches and killed thousands of Christians. Twelve of the northern states have adopted Islamic law, and Christians are frequently discriminated against in this region, with Christian villages often lacking clean water and health clinics, and Christians being denied access to secondary school and higher education.

    Where is it?

    What to pray for:

    • For an end to violence by Boko Haram and Hausa-Fulani Muslim herdsmen, and wisdom for the government to deal with these groups effectively
    • For protection for Christians, particularly girls, and for the safe release of all who are held captive
    • Praise God that, despite their fear, many Christians continue to reach out to their neighbours with the gospel. Ask God to use His church to shine as a light in the darkness.

    Videos

    S.O. The Rapper tells Deborah’s story…

    What’s it like?

    Latest news and articles on Nigeria…

    Click the Nigeria tag below for a list of the latest articles and news on the country…

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