In the event that you were busy the last week of 2011 and missed our weekly podcast, please download it at our Persecution Podcast page.
In episode 97 of our podcast we shared prayers for Laos, India and Turkey. Here are the detailed prayer requests for each nation.
Seven Christian leaders remain in prison after authorities raided their Christmas gathering in Boukham village, Laos. Under orders from the village chief, authorities raided the home where the Christians were celebrating Christmas on Friday, Dec. 16. They arrested eight Christian leaders and took them to the village government house. Authorities accused the Christians of violating village law by holding a Christian service that offended the village’s traditional spirit religion. A representative of the Savannakhet Lao Evangelical Church (LEC), which is recognized by the government, attempted unsuccessfully to obtain the Christians’ release the day after their arrest. The LEC deputy chairman paid 1 million kip ($125, or about three months’ pay) for the release of Kingnamosorn, one of the imprisoned believers. The remaining seven were asked to admit guilt. When they refused, authorities placed their feet in stocks. “Their situation will likely get worse unless we have God’s intervention,” wrote a VOM contact. In 2008, three Christians were imprisoned for three months in Boukham village and were threatened with life imprisonment if they did not recant their Christian faith. Pray that the seven prisoners will be released and will have sweet communion with God while in prison.
A pastor who was arrested and imprisoned in October on false charges of forced conversion in the Kashmir Valley has been released from jail on bail. A Muslim cleric, the Grand Mufti, had asked Reverend C. M. Khanna to help a student gain admission to a school run by the Church of North India. When Rev. Khanna was unable to help, it is believed that the Grand Mufti retaliated by having him summoned to appear before the Sharia court. He was charged with forced conversion based on video of a routine baptism ceremony in his church. Rev. Khanna voluntarily appeared before the Sharia court in the Kashmir Valley, even though he could not be legally bound to appear before a Muslim court in a secular country like India. Rev. Khanna’s arrest has caused great fear among believers, according to local sources. Please pray that Rev. Khanna’s courage and faith during his ordeal will be a testimony to others.
The five men accused of killing three Christians in Malatya, Turkey, could be freed if they are not convicted by April 2012. Under Turkish law, those accused of a crime must be set free if they are not convicted and sentenced within five years. The trial for the men accused of killing Necati Aydin, Ugur Yuksel and Tilmann Geske began in November 2007 and has been mired in complications ever since. The next hearing is scheduled for Feb. 17, 2012, and delays beyond April 2012 could lead to the release of the five men. Pray that friends and families of the Malatya victims will know the peace of Jesus and that justice will be done.