February 22nd marks one year since Malaysian Pastor Raymond Koh was abducted from his car in broad daylight. Despite his family’s calls for an urgent government investigation, very little progress has been made in the search for him. His family don’t even know if he’s alive or dead. But Pastor Koh is known to God and there is nowhere he can go where he will be away from God’s presence. Pray for his family as they await news, and that the truth of his disappearance would soon be revealed.
During her recent visit to China, Theresa May raised concerns with the Chinese government privately regarding their record of human rights abuses, although many are disappointed that this did not go on the record publicly. Let us pray for unregistered churches in China, as new regulations have strengthened state control over religious activities. Particularly, pray for Living Stone Church and their pastor, Yang Hua, who are experiencing severe harassment from the government
“The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.” Psalm 34:17 Last year, Chinese pastor, Gu Yuese was imprisoned on false embezzlement charges. Just before Christmas, he was released from prison after the case against him was unexpectedly dropped. Thank the Lord for his release and pray that he will recover physically and mentally from his time in prison. Pray also for Pastor Gu’s family for strength and healing as they welcome him home.
Let us pray for the courageous men and women all over the world who follow the God given command to speak up and ‘defend the rights of the poor and needy’ Proverbs 31:9. Pray that threats against human rights defenders in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh would stop, thanking God for many of those that CSW have the honour of working with and for their protection. Go to www.csw.org.uk to listen to three ladies talk about their work on these issues in South Asia.
Though thousands of men, women and children have been killed by Fulani militia in Nigeria, the crisis has received almost no international attention. Much prayer has gone up for the camp in southern Kaduna for people displaced by Fulani violence. Recently, CSW Nigeria provided training in income generating skills to a group of destitute widows and gave them start up materials. When we visited in October, the ladies were transformed. Their faces glowed with hope as they told us they were now able to provide for their children and had even accumulated small savings. Praise God
This week we can thank God that Indonesia’s Constitutional Court has recently ruled that people from religious minorities should be allowed to state their faith on their ID cards. For many, this will mean receiving an identity card for the first time, allowing them to register their marriage and their children’s births, apply for healthcare, government jobs, and so much more. This is really encouraging news that will have a huge impact. Let us pray that those in other countries who face similar troubles are recognised.
Who are Christian Solidarity?
Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) works in over 20 countries across Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America, defending everyone’s right to freedom of religion or belief. Three quarters of the world’s population lives in countries with severe restrictions on their religious freedom – in fact, it’s one of the most widely-violated human rights in the world. We think this is unacceptable. We’re working to change it. Our vision is of a world where everyone is free to choose their beliefs – to hold and practise any religion they like, or none at all.
Find out more on the Christian Solidarity Worldwide website (click here)