As lockdown restrictions continue for us in the UK we can continue to look to our persecuted family for encouragement and hope in these strange times. Around the world, some churches, have seen COVID-19 bring unexpected blessings. But for others, the suffering still lingers. Amidst the pain, uncertainty and even the unforeseen opportunities, this is how COVID-19 is impacting the persecuted church.
Pastor Huang has seen immense change at his church in Wuhan.
“Before the virus, church activities were very normal,” he said. “But after the city was put into lockdown, all activities stopped.
“During this period, we have realised that we need to be intentionally proactive in loving others through action. For example, we discovered some young guys who work as couriers were not being given food at work. So, for two months, we provided meals for them every day.”
COVID-19 has brought devastation to China. Yet, even in the hardship, the church is uncovering timely reminders as they seek out the Lord. And the greatest of them all:
“The love of Jesus cannot be quarantined.”
Today, Yemen is on the brink of collapse. The worst humanitarian crisis in the world has led to 24 million people in desperate need of life- saving aid.
But for Christians, life is even harder. They are often denied emergency relief which is distributed through Islamic organisations and local mosques.
Yet, the church is stronger than ever.
“We pray for each other that the Lord delivers us from this pandemic,” Maritza* said. “It has brought us closer to Him and brought us closer together as His children in Yemen. We’re trying to spend more time with our children, teaching them and praying together and praying for the salvation of our people.”
In India, over 120 million people have lost their jobs to COVID-19, leaving countless families dependent on emergency relief.
Yet, even in a pandemic, discrimination in the 10th hardest place to be a Christian never stopped.
“A couple of times there was relief distribution carried out in the village,” said Sita*. “But they refused to help us, leaving us empty-handed.”
Fortunately, with the help of supporters like you, thousands of Christians, including Sita, received the resources they needed.
“This lockdown has given me more time to spend with God. Thank you for the emergency relief. We, as a family, are encouraged and strengthened by Christ’s love.”
We’ve two, awesome free sets of resources that’ll help you continue to grow with God during the UK lockdown. Check out our new lock down friendly Secret Church small group session or try out the different reflections on themes like loss, uncertainty and healing in our Isolated Church series!
We support people who are beaten, tortured,
imprisoned, falsely accused, and hated simply for following Jesus.