Each Friday I pray and fast for nations where Christians suffer the worst persecution around the world. This week I am praying and fasting for:
Eritrea. 5.9 million people with 2.7 million Christians.
The repeated tragedy of migrant boats capsizing in 2013 has drawn attention to the repressive circumstances for Christians in Eritrea. Those in the Coptic Church enjoy relative freedom, but Christians of other denominations suffer house raids, arrests and systematic torture. Gabriella is an influential Christian in the underground church who was interrogated, tortured and kept in solitary confinement – but she never denied Christ. She describes her time in prison as ‘a honeymoon with Jesus’. (Open Doors, World Watch List)
The Eritrean government has banned all Christian groups except the Orthodox Church of Eritrea, the country’s largest Christian group; the Roman Catholic Church; and the Evangelical Church of Eritrea, a Lutheran-affiliated denomination. With the exception of Sunni Islam, all other public religious practice has been banned. Security forces continue to disrupt private worship, conduct mass arrests at prayer meetings and other gatherings, and detain those arrested for indefinite periods without charge. Between 2,000 and 3,000 Christians are imprisoned in Eritrea because of their faith, and most of those have never received a court hearing or been formally charged. Prisoners are tortured and subjected to extremely poor living conditions, often locked in metal shipping containers or underground bunkers. Several who have refused to renounce their beliefs have died in custody. (The Voice of Martyrs)
Today, I prayed:
Lord, I pray that You send Your light and Your truth into the nation of Eritrea and that You open up the hearts of the Eritrean people to receive the love of the truth. (Based on Psalm 43:3 and 2 Thessalonians 2:10)
Join with me on Fridays to fast and pray for prisoners, according to Hebrews 13:3.