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February 20, 2012

Persecution Podcast 104: Algeria, Bosnia, and Sudan

Screen shot 2012-02-20 at 2.39.25 PMFriday we posted our 104th Persecution Podcast which dealt with specific prayer requests coming from the Sudan, Bosnia and Algeria.  Please take 5 minutes to listen to the prayer requests and to pray for our brothers and sisters who are suffering dearly for Jesus.  Click here to listen.

Algeria
On Feb. 1, Muslim extremists attacked a church in Ouargla, eastern Algeria, damaging church property. According to VOM contacts, Pastor Mourad had received a threatening letter two weeks earlier demanding that he leave the area but had not taken the threat seriously. However, around midnight on Feb.1, several men broke through the rear gate of the church and destroyed some church equipment. They also tried to break into the church building but were unsuccessful. In 2009, Pastor Mourad’s wife was beaten and seriously injured by an unknown group of attackers. And last year, an angry mob shouted death threats while throwing heaps of trash over the church walls. Despite these attacks, Pastor Mourad is convinced that the Lord has called him to serve in Ouargla, and he refuses to leave. “No matter what happens, we will stay here,” he says. Praise God for his faithfulness.

Bosnia
A Christian in Bosnia recently shared the gospel with his neighbors by giving them some humanitarian supplies along with a VOM-provided gospel story book. After receiving a package of supplies from the Christian relief organization Samaritan’s Purse, “Henry” offered the supplies to his neighbors, along with an illustrated Jesus: He Lived Among Us story book, which tells the story of Jesus from the gospels. A 25-year-old woman kept asking Henry questions about the difference between Croatian Christmas celebrations and Christian celebrations. “It came to my mind to use the book to talk more about Jesus and his plan for humanity,” Henry said. “In the end, I told her to read the book and find out more about the life of this wonderful and unique man.” Praise God for the creativity and willingness believers all over the world have to share Christ’s message.

Sudan
On Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2012, Sudanese forces bombed a school run by Samaritan’s Purse in the Nuba mountains in Southern Kordofan. The bombing occurred on the first day of school, when the Heiban Bible College campus was crowded with students, teachers and families. Although Sudanese forces dropped eight bombs, destroying two buildings, no one was killed. A statement from the United States’ ambassador to the United Nations said the attack “underscores the viciousness of Sudan’s ongoing military campaign in South Kordofan and Blue Nile states” in a conflict affecting 50,000 people. Samaritan’s Purse reported that four churches in the region have been destroyed since August. Nearly 30,000 refugees from the Nuba mountain have filled a camp across the border in South Sudan. Please pray for those affected by the ongoing violence and for those who are bringing Jesus’ name to the area.