Displaying items by tag: Voice of the Martyrs
Naomi and other refugees ate edible leaves while fleeing Boko Haram. She was desperate. ‘I had only God, and I talked to Him. He gave me the strength I needed.’ Naomi, her children and several thousand other refugees hid on a mountain for two years before Boko Haram chased them, with guns and bombs, to Cameroon. After leaving Cameroon, she found a camp for internally displaced people, but again they were told to leave. ‘I did not know where to go, so I cried to God.’ Next, Voice of the Martyrs workers found her - an answer to her prayers. They helped her children start school, and helped them move into their own house. ‘Since the passing of my husband, God has kept me. The attack only made me stronger in my faith.’
Elisa arrived home just in time to see Islamists murder her father and her husband, who was a pastor. Her uncle had already been beheaded. Grief-stricken and fearing for their lives, Elisa and 18 family members joined 200,000 others fleeing the Islamists’ advance. This year the insurgents, who have been active in northern Mozambique for three years, have pledged allegiance to the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS). The thousands displaced by the repeated, devastating attacks have fled to other parts of the country where conditions are crowded and resources are stretched. Front-line workers have reported burnt and destroyed churches, schools, clinics and police stations. As Christian workers provide comfort and food to the displaced, they are also offering Bibles to give hurting people the hope of Jesus Christ. Pray for an end to the ongoing violence. Pray also that the many enduring this trauma will gain hope and eternal life through faith in Christ.
What began as an activity restriction in South Korea is turning into an assault on religious freedom. In June, police stopped Voice of the Martyrs Korea from sending Bibles across the border to North Korea. Today, the ministry and its co-founder, Eric Foley, face criminal investigations. ‘Balloon launching has been difficult since we began in 2005. However, now there is a large scale effort to declare balloon launching illegal’, Foley explains. ‘It’s unclear, at this point, how things will go.’ He said the government’s motives and methods remain dubious, as launching has become a deeply political subject. He added, ‘North Korea made a very public offensive against balloon launching that was adopted by South Korean authorities. This was the impetus to say it is illegal, not through new laws, but through the application of other laws. The issue is not about balloon launching; it’s about the legal right to do private ministry work outside government mediation.’
Join Christians around the world on Sunday 3 November, the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church - a global prayer meeting for our Christian brothers and sisters who witness for Christ boldly at any cost. Voice of the Martyrs has produced a short film providing a dramatic example of the challenges of following Christ inside North Korea, the world’s most restricted nation. The film will inspire all who watch it to pray for persecuted Christians around the world. It depicts the true story of Pastor Han, who was assassinated by North Korean agents in China because of his effective gospel work among North Koreans. The story is told through the eyes of one of his disciples who has followed in his mentor’s footsteps by continuing to share the gospel with North Koreans, despite the danger.
Health care for our brothers and sisters in South Kordofan, Sudan, faces a crisis. Voice of the Martyrs (VOM) reports that after hospitals were bombed and aid organisations chased from the country, only two doctors are treating 1.1 million people. Even if people weren’t being maimed in government bombings, medical aid would be desperately lacking for everyday needs such as delivering babies, treating malaria, and helping people injured in accidents. Last year, VOM delivered 44.5 tons of medicine to the South Kordofan region, and it is supporting the few medical workers still in the region by helping to build a clinic and providing badly needed mosquito nets for its patients. See also article 7 in this section.