Dear brothers and sisters. I want to share what happened to one of our Christian couples who was burdened to serve a people group I’ll call “X.” Hopefully what you read here will give you a greater understanding of what many Christian workers go through while serving in resistant countries.
The family was able to get visas and moved to a nearby country where the majority of X people live. For nearly two years, they lived and ministered among the X people. But then the government of that country started mass persecutions of the X people and of foreign missionaries living in that area. The government organized labor camps and arrested people, sending them to the camps. People who were arrested were not released for a long time; some are still missing today. The prisoners in the camps undergo humiliation, are made to learn and sing communist hymns, and are “urged” to reject their beliefs.
Our ministry, Greenland Network, realized how serious the situation was for this couple, so as a Christian community and Union, we sought to return them as quickly as possible. In April 2018, we were able to bring them home.
Now back home, this family is going through serious rehabilitation and adaptation issues. Living under constant threat deeply impacted their psycho-emotional condition. For two years, they lived, under strong pressure, learned to be cautious and always ready to react. They needed to watch if they were being followed and expect to be questioned at any time. They experienced pain as they watched their brothers and sisters in Christ be arrested, some of whom never came home. No one knew where the arrested people were taken. Each day they wondered if they would be next to be taken to a labor camp. Only after they returned home did they realize the effects this pressure had on them and the risks they had been taking.
The Good News is that, by God’s grace, many people in that area heard the Gospel. Six people believed and three were baptized. Some of them are currently in a camp.
Please, pray for these families and for safe rehabilitation and continuation of their fruitful ministries!
Please pray too for the following:
1) Pray for Christians’ wisdom and boldness in preaching the Gospel as there is such a rapid spread of Islam in our Central Asian country. Many young people are becoming fundamental Muslims which is very concerning.
2) For those being persecuted or were persecuted, so that God would help them to stay strong in faith and be restored. For their safety, especially in their own communities, that are very much against believers.
3) We have high unemployment which forces believers to leave, or makes them feel desperate. Pray for provision from God and also for business development among Christians.
4) Many churches do not have strong children’s ministry. We are already witnessing a generation that grew up weak in faith. Pray that our churches invest well in the growing generation to make them strong believers rooted in Christ.
5) Pray for good and healthy ties of Christians with their communities, local administrations and government. Pray for their openness and willingness to serve their communities.