Calls for prayer as Christian persecution increases

(Photo: Unsplash/Jeremy Yap)

Churches in the UK and Ireland are being asked to pray as persecution continues to grow worldwide.

The call has been made by Release International ahead of the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church (IDOP). 

Churches are being invited to use Sunday 5 November or another Sunday in November to highlight the plight of persecuted Christians. 

Millions of Christians around the world face harassment, discrimination and violence, including death, for their faith. Many are not free to attend church or practise their faith out in the open.

Release International is teaming up with Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW), Open Doors and the Evangelical Alliance for an online event to intercede for the persecuted Church at 7:30pm on 5 November. 

The event will highlight the experience of persecuted Christians in Eritrea, Nigeria and Nicaragua, and those who have been imprisoned for their faith. 

Resources available to download from the Release website include the story of Chinese pastor, Wang Yi, who was senteced to nine years in prison for allegedly "inciting subversion of state power". 

"I firmly believe that the Bible has not given any branch of any government the authority to run the church or to interfere with the faith of Christians. Therefore, the Bible demands that I, through peaceable means, in meek resistance and active forbearance, filled with joy, resist all administrative policies and legal measures that oppress the church and interfere with the faith of Christians," he said.

"I hope God uses me... to tell those who have deprived me of my personal freedom that there is an authority higher than their authority, and that there is a freedom that they cannot restrain, a freedom that fills the church of the crucified and risen Jesus Christ."

Release International CEO Paul Robinson said: "In the New Testament the Apostles sought to strengthen and encourage persecuted Christians. And they prayed for them.

"On this International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church, we have the opportunity to truly count those who suffer for Christ as brothers and sisters, to stand with them and lift our voices with theirs in prayer. Join us!"

Republished from Christian Today UK.