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anonymous PRAYER ALERT! May 13, 2009 1:38 PM

PRAYER ALERT!
PRAYER ALERT!
PRAYER ALERT!
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anonymous  May 13, 2009 1:42 PM

“Remember your word to your servant, for you have given me hope.  My comfort in my suffering is this: your promise preserves my life.”  Psalm 119:49-50 

May 13, 2009 

Dear Donna  

Underground North Korean Christians Launch Prayer Campaign   

“Christians in North Korean tell us that the country is in total crisis," said Open Doors spokesman Jan Vermeer. “People are dying of hunger. The security services are looking for Christians and searching houses more thoroughly.  In the northern border area there is a warlike atmosphere.  There are soldiers everywhere; some are hidden. They try to catch people who want to cross the river into China. There are also many rumors about Kim Jong-Il’s health and concerns as to who will succeed him.  Because the situation in North Korea is so tense, Christians feel that it is time to pray even more for their country asking God to give them opportunities to tell non-Christians about Christ.”

Evangelizing in North Korea is dangerous and Christians take great risks to share the Gospel.  In a nation of 24 million, there are approximately 400,000 Christians practicing their faith in underground networks. Last year in 2008 Open Doors secretly trained 4000 Christians, nearly ten times more than in 2007.  Emergency aid consisting of food, clothing and medicines, as well as thousands of Bibles, books and other materials, were distributed to 54,000 Christians. Praise God!     

Father, thank You for the courage of Your servants in North Korea.  Please give them strength and protect them in all ways.  “Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak Your word with great boldness."  (Acts 4:29-30)  Guide us today as we join them prayer for the nation of North Korea uniting us in fellowship and effort ...bringing honor and glory to You.   



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anonymous  May 13, 2009 1:45 PM

North Korean Christian offers 80-year old Bible

Eighty years ago a missionary gave a New Testament Bible to a young boy in Korea.  As the years went by, life changed drastically in Korea.  After the war, he saw that his country was divided; the Southern part of the peninsula was free and God’s church flourished.  While in the North, where he lived, life became harsh and hostile for God’s people.  However, in God’s providence he was able to escape, but not without taking with him, his precious Bible. In gratitude, he recently sent this Bible to Open Doors as a testimony to the work God has accomplished through this organization.  Many pages are worn and others are handwritten as evidence of the faith held courageously by North Korean believers. This Bible is a very precious gift to our ministry.

We pray Father, that Your Word will spread, extending from border to border, and reaching into the darkest places so that many more will come to the life saving knowledge of Your Son, Jesus Christ. “Finally, brothers pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored.”  (2 Thessalonians 3:1)  

Additional Prayer Requests for North Korea    

  • Pray for the North Korean government and the possible transfer of power, that it will be done peacefully and without bloodshed.
  • Pray for the prisoners, especially for Christians and others who have been unjustly accused.
  • Pray for the poor in North Korea, that they would have relief from the on-going famine. 
  • Thankfully pray for servants, missionaries, and organizations providing assistance to believers and ask for divine protection of these saints.     

Lord, we prayerfully stand with our persecuted brothers and sisters around the world, especially in North Korea.  Guide us by the intercession of Your Holy Spirit that we may boldly serve as tools in Your hands.  Thank you for the privilege you have given us - to stand united with them in prayer.

The Prayer Force Team 

News Source
Compass Direct News

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 June 03, 2009 8:27 PM

DEAR FRIENDS,
As you can see my group has been ruined practically, and I am very alarmed and upset about how without informing me or giving me any legal rights someone can, without any reason whatsoever, take away a group; this is with the truest sense of the word persecution.
I care more for the persecuted Christian and the pastor in a third world country than anyone can imagine and prayed long months and put many long hard hours of work into this.
And as far as I know I haven't done a thing wrong. If I have, I haven't been informed of it. I plan to get a lawyer, and I ask you to pray for me.

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 August 11, 2009 7:11 PM

Update on Marzieh & Maryam

On Aug. 8, Marzieh and Maryam were summoned to an Iranian court and ordered to deny their faith verbally and in a written statement. Praise God, they stood firm and replied, "We love Jesus. We will not deny our faith." They have been sent back to Evin prison, where they have been held since March.
Maryam and Marzieh have been strengthened by the prayers and help of believers like you. We encourage you to continue writing them letters and to continue praying. Also, write to the Iranian government requesting they be released.
Please send this e-mail to others who have a heart for persecuted believers and encourage them to write, as well. Get involved. Pray and write today!
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 August 19, 2009 6:23 PM

August 19, 2009

Dear Donna,

Last August, 17-year-old Manini Digal was caught by extremists during the outbreak of violence in Orissa, India.   They tore off her clothes, assaulted her and then set her on fire.  Through the help of Open Doors Manini received the medical care she needed and survived; she stands today to praise God for His protection and her recovery.

Along with other Christians in Orissa, Manini will remember the one-year anniversary of the anti-Christian violence sparked by the August 23, 2008 assassination of Hindu leader Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati. Although an extreme Marxist group claimed responsibility, Hindu nationalist groups blamed Christians for the assassination. This Sunday India’s church leaders will commemorate the anniversary with “Peace Day” which will include marches, fasting and prayer vigils.

Is the crisis over?  Orissa Christians remain targets of violence and persecution by Hindu extremists.  This year India jumped from No. 30 to No. 22 on Open Doors’ World Watch List of countries where Christians suffer the most severe persecution. Last week the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) placed India on its watch list for frequent outbreaks of violence against minorities, especially Christians. The report sharply criticized the Indian government for failure to protect the rights of religious minorities. 

Over 4,000 Christians remain unable to return to their homes because of the threat of violence.  They need our prayers more than ever.  On Monday, August 24, we invite you to call and join the Open Doors staff as we mark the anniversary of the Orissa violence by upholding our fellow Christians in prayer.  (Prayer phone-in instructions).

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 August 19, 2009 6:43 PM

Remember to pray for the church builders and church planters!
Please choose a day[Monday, August 24th and one other day] to pray for the church planters and church builders in poverty stricken countries, third world countries, war torn countries and restrictive countries!


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 August 19, 2009 6:44 PM

Remember to pray for the church builders and church planters!
Please choose a day[Monday, August 24th and one other day] to pray for the church planters and church builders in poverty stricken countries, third world countries, war torn countries and restrictive countries!
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 August 22, 2009 7:06 PM

Please pray for the Underground Churches thy have a bad time trying to serve Jesus. Thy are torcherd and killed every day.

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 August 26, 2009 2:08 PM

August 19, 2009

Dear Donna,

Somali Christian Shot Dead near Kenya Border

According to Compass Direct News, Muslim extremists shot and killed Ahmed Matan on August 18 near the Somali border with Kenya.  Matan, who converted from Islam to Christianity, had been a member of the underground Christian church since 2001.  The shooting comes at a time when Islamist groups, led by al Shabaab, are hunting down converts to Christianity as they seek to establish sharia (Islamic law) throughout Somalia.

“I am afraid for my life, the al Shabaab want to get proof that I follow the Christian faith,” Matan told Ismael, a former leader of a secret Christian fellowship in Somalia to which Matan belonged. “They have not been seeing me in the mosque and seem to have realized that I am not part of them.”  

Father we join in prayer for Matan’s family.  He was a father of three, and his last child is just 3 months old.  We also pray for the small but faithful fellowship of Christians in Somalia, that they might  worship You in safety and without fear. Father, please protect them and provide for thier every need.

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 August 26, 2009 2:18 PM

Christians Pray for Peace in India

One year after India’s worst-ever attack on Christians, which began after Maoists killed a Hindu leader, churches across India and around the world fasted and prayed for peace, healing and reconciliation.  On Monday August 24, prayer partners from the U.S. and other countries joined Open Doors USA staff in prayer for India. 
> Listen to audio of Orissa discussion and prayer.

Praying with you,

The Prayer Force Team

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 August 26, 2009 2:20 PM

Today, August 26 marks the fifth day of Ramadan, one of the holiest seasons for Muslims.  As Muslims fast, pray and seek God, pray that they seek the truth found only through the saving grace of Jesus Christ.  Pray that they will desire to learn more about His promises of love, peace, and eternal salvation and pray against the blindness and darkness that surrounds them.  Please use the Ramadan Prayer guide as you pray for the countries listed on the Open Doors World Watch list where persecution of Christians is most severe  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 August 26, 2009 2:30 PM

Dear Donna,
 
There is an extraordinary situation taking place right now that you need to know about today. It involves Christians who are under attack by Muslim extremists.
 
Radical Muslims are specifically targeting families simply because they are Christians. Injured, hungry, and destitute, they have nowhere to take their sick children; nowhere to get treatment for the wounds they suffer; and no way to even get the most basic of medical supplies like aspirin or bandages. 
 
For security reasons I cannot mention the specific location, but I can tell you it is a situation that is all over the daily news, TV, and internet.
 
Our brothers and sisters plead for much-needed relief.
In response, we are launching Project Hope. I have recorded a personal message for you to explain this crucial project in more detail.
    
Today I am asking you for your online gift to support Project Hope, which will help us deliver over $3.5 million worth of vital medical supplies to our suffering brothers and sisters.
 
Your gift will also mean we will be able to continue supporting and encouraging those who are looking to us in these truly difficult days.
 
Thank you for responding generously. God bless you for your relentless commitment to “strengthen what remains and is at the point of death.”
 
In Christ,
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 August 26, 2009 2:40 PM

Click image to view video from Carl

Help Now
click button to donate

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 August 27, 2009 12:38 AM

Donna, thanks for posting this . My prayers that God will supply their needs. We ask in the precious name of Jesus to help our brothers and sisters in the persecuted world amen.

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 September 03, 2009 9:54 PM

Dear Donna,

Testimony of Emad, a Believer in Iran

“I travelled around the world with my business; I was married and had children. I had everything in life, money, car, home, a really good life.  I was a successful man.

“But I was empty, life had no meaning and I was desperately unhappy. I considered suicide and set out to take my own life. I should have been dead.  I heard a voice calling my name and reaching out to help me, and then I woke up and was shocked that I was still alive. A friend came to see me; he was a Christian and led me to Jesus. I converted 9 years ago.

“Within 2 months of this, my wife left me and took me to court. In the court the judge asked me, ‘Are you a Christian?’ I replied ‘Yes.’  The judge asked me to write down that I was a Christian. This became the evidence used against me.  In just one court hearing I was divorced, lost my children, lost my business, lost my home, all my money and possessions and was kicked out of the city.”

Emad is now remarried and is a leader of a group of mostly men.  He however remains unemployed and sometimes still struggles to understand why.  When people find out he is a Christian they will not hire him.  Also people owe him money but he cannot take them to court; he no longer has any rights because of his faith.  He knows this is part of being a Christian; it comes with saying “yes” to Jesus. 

Recently Emad participated in a training course.  “I really was grateful for all the training and the books.  These things we can touch and give thanks but I cannot put into words the depth of gratitude for knowing that people care and pray for me.  It encourages us all so much and reminds us that God will not leave us all alone. Thank you very much.”   

Father today we lift up men and women, like Emad, who have sacrificed so much for their faith.  As we unite in prayer, help us to see the spiritual depth to be found in their suffering and understand that their suffering does not defeat them, but strengthens them.  “I delight in weakness, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.  For when I am weak,then I am strong.” (2 Cor 12:10)   

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 September 03, 2009 10:01 PM

Today, September 2 marks the 12th day of Ramadan.  Let us join in prayer that as Muslims fast and pray, that they find the truth found only through the saving grace of Jesus Christ.  Please use the Ramadan Prayer guide as you pray for the countries listed on the Open Doors World Watch list where persecution of Christians is most severe.

Praying with you,

The Prayer Force Team

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 September 19, 2009 9:12 AM

Asia Bibi

Location: Pakistan
Arrested: June 2009

Asia is the wife of 50-year-old Ashiq Masih, and their family is one of only three Christian families in a village of more than 1,500 families. Many of the local women work on the farm of Muslim landowner Muhammad Idrees, including Asia. During their work many of the Muslim women have pressured Asia to renounce Christianity and accept Islam. In June, the pressure became especially strong. On Friday, June 19, there was an intense discussion among the women about their faith, with the Muslim women telling Asia about Islam. Asia responded by telling them about her faith in Christ.

More Info...
Prisoner Archives  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 September 19, 2009 9:14 AM

Asia Bibi

Location: Pakistan
Arrested: June 2009

Asia is the wife of 50-year-old Ashiq Masih, and their family is one of only three Christian families in a village of more than 1,500 families. Many of the local women work on the farm of Muslim landowner Muhammad Idrees, including Asia. During their work many of the Muslim women have pressured Asia to renounce Christianity and accept Islam. In June, the pressure became especially strong. On Friday, June 19, there was an intense discussion among the women about their faith, with the Muslim women telling Asia about Islam. Asia responded by telling them about her faith in Christ.

More Info...
Prisoner Archives  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 September 23, 2009 12:40 PM

September 23, 2009

Dear Donna,  

North Korea Prayer Vigil 

Scores of North Korean citizens have tried to escape the oppressive regime in their country.  Once across the border, instead of finding freedom, often they are caught and forcibly repatriated.  In North Korea this crime is punishable by death.  Many who have been captured are sent to a labor camp…seldom do they survive living under the horrific conditions of a North Korean prison. 
 
Tomorrow, September 24, marks the 27th anniversary of the signatory date when the government of China agreed that they will allow refugees to seek asylum, as defined through the United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.   However, since that date there have been countless violations with refugees being repatriated to North Korea or forced into prostitution, marriage or other forms of human bondage in China.  This is often to the gain of the Chinese capturers; it has become a lucrative business in China. 

For seven consecutive years, North Korea has held the number one position on the Open Doors World Watch list of the countries where persecution of Christians is most severe.  This year the anniversary of the signing will be marked with prayer vigils around the world along with other activities. 

Father, we feel the heaviness of the fear in which the people of North Korea exist on a daily basis.  May the forced repatriation of North Korean refugees who have sought refuge in China come to an end.  May Your mighty hand of protection be upon the people of North Korea, especially Christians, who live in the shadow of fear, that they might know the light and hope of the gospel.

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 September 30, 2009 12:09 PM

September 30, 2009

Dear Donna,  

Prison Terms Upheld for Two Christians in Ethiopia 

An Ethiopian court last week (Sept. 21) threw out an appeal by two evangelists thus upholding their six-month prison sentences.
 
In July Temesgen Alemayehu and Tigist Welde Amanuel went to Debiretabor, Amhara state, to plant a church.  After a week in the area, according to area Christian sources, their proclamation of Christ led several people to confess their sins and receive Him as Savior.  Some passersby however began to question the two evangelists; a heated argument then led a group to attack them.

According to Compass News police later submitted the attackers’ false statements to district prosecutors stating that the evangelists offered money and gifts to make converts.  Alemayehu said that his only sin was telling of his faith in Christ to interested persons. The next day, the court delivered a guilty verdict. “There is an open conspiracy between judges, police and prison officers,” the church leader said. “Police speeded up the investigation and brought it to the district prosecutor’s attention within a day.” Alemayehu and Amanuel are currently serving a six-month sentence.

Father, we lift up these two precious saints to Your loving care.  Just as Paul while in prison said to the guard, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved.” (Acts 16:31), we pray for the same boldness and witness for our brother Alemayehu and sister Amanuel

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 October 08, 2009 1:39 PM

Is There No One to Help? 

Often it seems that places like Iraq are imploding.  Help is desperately needed in these dark places.  However there are many who work tirelessly to assist the downtrodden.  Open Doors launched a mobile medical clinic with doctors and nurses to travel to remote villages providing medical care as well as Bibles and spiritual encouragement.  A staff member observes, “The people love the Bibles and often start reading them immediately. What a blessing.”

Father, thank you for these faithful ones who bring physical and spiritual healing to the suffering in Iraq, both Christian and Muslim Kurds.  Protect the medical workers that they might continue to bring help.  Give them wisdom and opportunity not only to provide good medical help, but also to meet the spiritual needs there.



This post was modified from its original form on 08 Oct, 13:40  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 October 08, 2009 1:49 PM

Free to Believe 

Please join the Open Doors advocacy team by signing the "Free to Believe" petition by saying NO to the Defamation of Religions Resolution being introduced in the UN.  While appearing to simply promote religious tolerance, in reality it promotes intolerance and human rights violations for religious minorities in some countries.

Why is this urgent?  While Defamation of Religions Resolutions have been introduced and passed by some countries in the past, it is up again this year for re-authorization. Policy experts at the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom believe there is a real opportunity to defeat it this year.  The Open Doors advocacy team will be conveying the level of support by our members against the resolution as we interact with the countries which have abstained from voting on this issue in the past.  Your voice is vitally important.  Please visit Open Doors website and say NO!

Praying with you,

The Prayer Force Team

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 October 11, 2009 12:53 PM

Meet Shafia

The Voice of the Martyrs

 

Shafia's Story

Kidnapped. Tortured. Forced into poverty because of her faith. Shafia is one of thousands of Christians around the world persecuted because they stand strong for Jesus. On Nov. 8, Christians will unite in prayer as they observe this year's International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church.

To help you tell the story of our persecuted brothers and sisters, VOM has assembled a new IDOP Church Resource Kit featuring a video about Shafia, along with special products you can share with your church or Christian group. In VOM's new video "They Call Me Chura... ," you will learn the amazing story of this young Pakistani woman who found God's peace and the power of forgiveness while held hostage by a Muslim neighbor. For a sample clip of the video, click here.


You can order the new IDOP Church Resource Kit for only $9.

VOM's new 2009 IDOP Church Resource Kit also includes prisoner profile sheets, prayer bulletins, resources for kids and more. Also available is VOM's new prayer banner for $25. Share the story of the persecuted church with your church, friends and family. Order the 2009 IDOP Church Resource Kit today!

» Click here to order your Church Resource Kit.

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 October 11, 2009 12:54 PM

NOVEMBER 8TH IS INTERNATIONAL PRAYER DAY!
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 October 14, 2009 9:29 PM

Continued Prayers for our Imprisoned Brethren in Ethiopia 

Last month we lifted up in prayer two Christians held in an Ethiopian prison on false charges of bribing people to convert to Christianity.  Compass Direct News reports that although they successfully appealed to the State Supreme Court in Bahir last week, new charges have been waged against them of insulting the Ethiopian Orthodox Church while in prison.  They are scheduled to be in court today (October 14) to face these new charges that have been brought against them.

Father, we do not know yet the result of today's trial in Ethiopia. Whether they are released or remain in prison, thank you that they have true freedom in You and that Your Word will continue to be proclaimed, in prison and out.

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 October 16, 2009 4:43 AM

Dear Donna,

This is a crucial year in the fight to preserve religious freedom worldwide. Open Doors USA will be helping to lead the advocacy effort at the United Nations to prevent the Defamation of Religions resolution from passing through our Free to Believe Campaign. But we need your help. Please sign on to our petition to register your disapproval of the resolution. The campaign already has recieved an amazing response with over 2,600 signatures. But we need to keep the momentum going.

The Defamation of Religions Resolution seeks to criminalize words or actions as attacks against a particular religion. As incredible as it sounds, passing this resolution could allow a Christian to be persecuted under UN approval. We need you to voice your protest of this resolution.

The resolution protects a faith rather than individuals who hold a faith, which goes against the very purpose of human rights in international law. The result is that this resolution gives UN sanction to Muslim majority countries to persecute Christians and other religious minorities for not sharing the same beliefs as Muslims. It also provides legitimacy to these countries' blasphemy laws which are often used to accuse, imprison, and even murder Christians.

While Defamation of Religions Resolutions have been introduced and passed in previous years, it is up again this year for re-authorization. Policy experts at the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom believe we have a real opportunity to defeat it this year. Members of Congress and non-profit organizations will be organizing to urge countries to vote NO on Defamation of Religions Resolution.

Please sign the Free to Believe Petition today! Many signatures gives our advocacy team the backing to approach these countries and ask them to change their vote.

Advocating with you,

Lindsay Vessey



Lindsay Vessey

Advocacy Director

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 October 16, 2009 8:24 PM

NOVEMBER 8th IS INTERNATIONAL PRAYER DAY FOR THE PERSECUTED CHRISTIAN!
ICC is offering inexpensive prayer bulletins that you can use in your service to remember the persecuted. This year's theme is the suffering Body of Christ. The bulletins cover the stories of Christians in seven countries and include a prayer calendar for the persecuted.
 
Bulletins are $0.30 for continental US orders and $0.40 for Alaska, Hawaii and Canada. Minimum order of 50. Prices include shipping!
 
  
 
Order Your Resources Today:
call us at 1-800-422-5441.
Burma
Free Resource Kits for Churches:
We've also created a Resource Kit CD that we're offering to churches, free of charge. If you do not work for a church, you can still order one of these kits for $5 (just enough to help us recover our production costs).
 
The ICC Resource Kit is packed with a planning guide, videos, stories, sermon ideas, Sunday school lesson ideas and much more!
 
If you're ordering for a church, please call us (1-800-422-5441) with a valid church address.
ICC Logo


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 October 23, 2009 7:17 PM

China's 'Conscience' Missing in Action
Top Christian lawyer Gao Zhisheng vanishes as government stifles dissent.
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 October 24, 2009 5:36 AM

October 21, 2009

Dear Friend,

Upcoming Tunisian Elections

Join Christians in Tunisia as they pray for their country and the presidential and legislative elections to take place October 25.  This North African country along the Mediterranean boasts a population of over 10 million people. The comparatively small Christian community is largely made up of foreign residents and native-born citizens of Arab or European descent.  There are no laws against conversion from Islam; however, government officials use bureaucratic means to discourage it, and new Christians often face ostracism, with most of the pressure from families.  

Father we join the Tunisian Christians as they pray for their elections that those who rule their country will rule with godly justice and that their hearts will turn to You. We also ask that You protect the Muslim Background Believers from persecution, but also bring opportunities for them to share the good news of reconciliation with Yourself through the sacrifice of Christ.

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 October 24, 2009 5:45 AM

Acteal Prisoners – Update

Alonso Lopez Entzin spent 11 years and eight months in prison for a crime he did not commit.  Accused of participating in the tragic “Acteal massacre” in December 1997, he and more than 80 of his neighbors were arrested and charged with the murders. On Aug. 12, the Federal Supreme Court of Mexico ordered that Lopez Entzin and 19 other men accused in the Acteal killings be freed.  Of these men, 18 are believers, but only 5 of the men were believers when they entered prison almost 12 years ago.  The remainder met Christ during their time in prison.  

“There are thousands and thousands of brothers who prayed for us inside the jail – thank God He answered those prayers,” Entzin said through tears.  Despite being freed, the 20 men have yet to resume normal life with their families. They are living in makeshift half-way houses provided by the federal government in hot, bustling Tuxtla Gutierrez, awaiting re-settlement on land that state authorities have promised them. Please continue to pray for these men as they readjust to life outside prison walls and for the Federal Supreme Court of Mexico who will be reviewing 31 more cases in the coming weeks.  

Father, we give thanks for bringing about justice for these men.  And we give thanks for Your work in the hearts of many who encountered You in saving faith while in prison.  We thank you, too, for the confidence that
even now You continue to work for justice on behalf of those who remain
in prison.  Give them all courage and hope.

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 October 29, 2009 7:28 PM

Encouragement from Vietnam

Compass News reports that on October 19, the Assemblies of God (AoG) church in Vietnam received an “operating license,” the first step in becoming legal.  They now have permission to “carry on religious activity” anywhere in the country for the next year.  In the meantime, they must submit some extensive documentation, including a doctrinal statement, a constitution and by-laws, and a four-year working that must be approved by the government before being allowed to officially organize.  This is the first of these operating licenses to be granted in two years.    

Father, we give thanks for this encouraging news from Vietnam.  We call for your Spirit’s intervention this year as the AoG prepares and submits the required documentation.  Give them favor with the authorities that Your Word would go forth in great power and the people of Vietnam might stand united in praise and worship.

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 October 29, 2009 7:32 PM

Join “Greater Calling” in 24 hour prayer for IDOP Moved by compassion for the persecuted church, "Greater Calling” is hosting a 24 hour prayer call for International Day of Prayer from 8:00 PM Eastern Time on Saturday, November 7th (00:00 GMT) through 8:00 PM Eastern Time on Sunday November 8th (00:00 GMT).  This call is open to anyone with a heart for our brothers and sisters living in persecuted countries.  Visit their site for more information or to get involved!

Praying with you,

The Prayer Force Team


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 October 29, 2009 8:04 PM

Our Brothers and Sisters Around the World Are Suffering for Their Faith.

BE THEIR VOICE
Volunteer with www.Be-A-Voice.net

It's as simple as sharing current prayer requests,
encouraging others to write to Christians imprisoned for their faith
and requesting complimentary copies of Tortured for Christ
for those who want to learn more.

Photo of People

When you join VOM's new Be-A-Voice Network you will receive FREE online access to prayer bulletins, prisoner profile sheets and the ability to request free copies of Tortured for Christ for your Christian friends.

 

By becoming a member, you make a commitment to continue making the message of today's persecuted church known through prayer, education and practical involvement.

Volunteer for VOM in Your Local Church and Community.

» JOIN NOW at www.Be-A-Voice.net

Questions? Contact our network administrator at info@be-a-voice.net.

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 November 05, 2009 1:33 PM

Dear Friend,  And the Walls Fell Down  

November 9 marks the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.  Over the years, Brother Andrew delivered hundreds of Bibles to former communist countries in his now famous blue Volkswagen. He helped bring God’s love to the discouraged but faithful pastors behind the wall.  Then in 1989 this seemingly impenetrable wall fell. Praise God!  At Nikolai Church in Leipzig, Germany, prayer meetings for peace were held every Monday evening from 1982 until that day in 1989 when around 70,000 gathered outside the church and God turned their meeting into a revolution of “candles and prayers."

How magnificent is Your name in all the earth!  Father, thank you for this reminder in real time and place that You are sovereign over the rulers of this world.  We continue our prayers now for the Christians in North Korea, Iran, Afghanistan and all of the strongholds of persecution.  Strengthen believers with Your Word and give them courage to stand firm.  Break the bands of injustice and set the prisoners free.    
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 November 05, 2009 1:38 PM

Prisoners Freed - Update  

The latest in a series of false charges against two Ethiopian evangelists was put to rest on Friday (Oct. 23) when they were finally released from prison.  Fellow prisoners had accused Temesgen Alemayehu and Tigist Welde Amanuel of insulting the Ethiopian Orthodox Church (EOC) after they had successfully appealed charges of accepting bribes and forcing conversions.  Compass Direct News reports that the judge however rejected witnesses’ testimony on the most recent charges as contradictory and of no value.  Alemayehu and Amanuel thank you for praying.  “The enemy has tried to frustrate us and delay our freedom,” said Amanuel. “But through prayers and God’s intervention, we are now released from prison.”

Thank you, Father, for Your protection of these saints.  Empower them now as they return to ministry that the seed of Your Word might be spread over their land and yield abundant fruit.   
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 November 05, 2009 1:41 PM

International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church (IDOP)  

Unite in prayer this Sunday, November 8.  Whether at a church IDOP event, in your own home with friends, or on your telephone with a Greater Calling event; join in prayer for those who suffer because of their faith in Christ.  Pray that Christ will be exalted in all the earth!

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 November 06, 2009 11:04 PM

FREE TO BELIEVE UPDATE: This fall, the Defamation of Religions Resolution will likely again be presented to the UN General Assembly. This resolution severely limits freedom of religion and expression, and legitimatizes Christian persecution in Islamic countries. Therefore, Open Doors has launched the Free to Believe campaign, which urges key members of the UN to vote against the resolution. Thank you to those who signed the petition to tell the UN members, “NO to suppression of religious freedom.” We are pleased to report that over 5,000 people have taken action in the fight to preserve religious freedom worldwide. Open Doors President, Carl Moeller, and the Advocacy Team were in New York City last week. They met with various country delegates, asking them to change their vote and oppose this resolution. Read article by Carl Moeller>>

COPTIC FAMILY FORCED TO SURRENDER WOMAN RESCUED IN EGYPT: State Security Investigations (SSI) forces in Egypt arrested, abused and then extorted money from a Coptic Christian for rescuing his daughter from her Muslim husband, who was holding her against her will in Alexandria, according to sources in Egypt. Full story>>

FLARE IN BJP-RUN MADHYA PRADESH, INDIA: Since the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) came to power in Madhya Pradesh in December 2003, Christians in the state have suffered increased attacks and concerted efforts to tarnish their image, church leaders said. Full Story>>

SECRETARY OF STATE CLINTON ASKED TO ADDRESS RELIGIOUS FREEDOM VIOLATIONS IN IRAN: The following letter regarding religious freedom violations in Iran was sent to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Tuesday, October 13 by the US Commission on International Religious Freedom. Full Story>>

IMPRISONED CHRISTIAN IN SOMALILAND ON HUNGER STRIKE: A convert from Islam in Somalia’s self-declared state of Somaliland has staged a hunger strike to protest his transfer to a harsh prison in a remote part of the country. Full story>>

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 November 08, 2009 7:15 AM

Nov 8, 2009

TODAY IS THE INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER FOR THE PERSECUTED CHRISTIAN!
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 November 12, 2009 8:05 PM

>Carl Moeller: May we continue to pray, give and show love to our persecuted brothers and sisters.
Read more>>
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 December 04, 2009 1:25 PM

Update on Father Nguyen Van Ly

Father Nguyen Van Ly, who was sentenced to eight years in prison in March 2007, recently suffered a severe stroke, according to Forum 18 News. He was admitted to the military hospital in Hanoi. At last report, he was semi-paralyzed but was conscious and able to speak. Family members report that he is being treated well. Pray that Father Van Ly will have a full recovery.
We encourage you to continue writing him letters and to continue praying. We also encourage you to write to the Vietnamese government requesting Father Van Ly's release.
Please send this e-mail to others who have a heart for persecuted believers, and encourage them to write. Get involved. Pray and write today!
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 December 07, 2009 8:36 PM

Dear Donna Matthews,
 
Thank you for your support to date. We just learned that the Burma orphans are again in a percarious position: 
On November 27th, Thailand’s border police stormed the Shekinah (Glory to God) orphanage in Mae Hong Son Province near the Burma border, put the names of all the residents on a register and asked them to prepare for deportation.
 
After fleeing Burma in June, the children were temporarily moved to another orphanage closeby. However, due to the spread of Malaria in that orphanage and the subsequent death of one girl, they were quickly shifted to the new location. It has been just a week since the 76 children (between the ages of six and sixteen) were moved to the new location, around 100 miles from the orphanage on the Burma/Thailand border.  
 
Please pray that the Thai officials would have mercy on these children and allow them to stay. The best situation would be for the orphans to be granted permanant immigrant status.
 
Thank you once again for your prayers and your action on behalf of the persecuted.
 
ICC
 
International Christian Concern
P.O. Box 8056
Silver Spring, MD 20907
Phone: (800) ICC-5441
Fax: (301) 585-5918
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 December 09, 2009 10:14 PM

December 9, 2009

Dear Donna

Alimjan Yimit Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison

Chinese authorities have quietly sentenced Uyghur Christian Alimjan Yimit to 15 years in prison on the apparently contrived charge of “providing state secrets to overseas organizations,” according to China Aid Association (CAA).  The charge against the 36-year-old house church leader, held for more than two years at Kashgar Detention Center, was based on innocuous interviews he granted to media outside of China, according to his lawyer, Li Dunyong.

“The 15-year sentence is far more severe than I originally expected,” Li said in a CAA press statement. “The whole world should be appalled at this injustice against innocent Christian leader Alimujiang,” said CAA President Bob Fu.

More Chinese House Church Pastors and Leaders Sentenced

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 December 09, 2009 10:29 PM

DAY 308: GAO ZHISHENG TORTURED, FAMILY REPRESSED!

ChinaAid recently received another report from inside sources in China that Gao Zhisheng has been severely beaten by authorities. The report stated his current living condition is worse than death and that Gao is crying daily in pain and desperation.

The Chinese government has responded to the increased worldwide pressure for Gao Zhisheng's release by cutting off communication with two of Gao's siblings living in China and placing them under police surveillance.

In a November 26th interview with Radio Free Asia, Gao's brother, Gao Zhiyi, stated, "For every question, there are three unknowns. No one knows anything. They won't talk to us and they won't meet with us... Even if Gao Zhisheng had committed a terrible crime, his family would still have the right to know what had happened to him!"

On Saturday, December 5th, Gao's older brother (Zhiyi) and sister lost all communication contact when their phone lines were disabled, following the release of the RFA interview.

Now more than ever, Gao Zhisheng needs our help!

In a recent visit to Washington, D.C., ChinaAid met with several leading congressmen who have been moved by their constituents (those like you) telling Gao's story - and they have proposed a Congressional Resolution on Gao Zhisheng's behalf. Our American leaders have begun to listen, and with more voices, we can make that resolution a reality!

So far, 5,284 people have contacted their local U.S. Representative to speak out on behalf of Gao Zhisheng. Continue to add your voice! We have to keep the momentum going on behalf of this innocent man who himself was a defender of the persecuted.

Please take action now.

1) Encourage others to Sign the Petition to Free Gao Zhisheng. You can forward this email to all your friends.

2) Email your U.S. Representative. Even if you have already done this, you can do it again with the updated information. Encourage your friends to do likewise. Learn more about contacting your U.S. Representative

3) Join ChinaAid in fighting for prisoners of conscience like Gao Zhisheng throughout China with your financial support. Make a monthly or one time contribution now.

We thank you for your support of ChinaAid, and urge you to continue spreading the word. Gao's story is gathering force in Washington, DC. With your help, our leaders will know that we concerned American citizens will not rest until Gao Zhisheng and his family are free to enjoy their fundamental human rights.

For more ways to take action, visit www.FreeGao.com.

For more information on other cases of religious persecution, visit www.ChinaAid.org

 

This online offer is being presented by ChinaAid and The Voice of the Martyrs. For additional information, you may contact us by clicking here or calling at 888-889-7757. To view our privacy policy, click here.

If you do not wish to receive these

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 December 17, 2009 6:57 AM

Dear Donna

“One Hundred Days of Combat” in North Korea

September 17 marked the end of “150 days of combat” in North Korea during which the movement of citizens was closely monitored.  Permits were required to go from one place to another.  Everyone was required to work for the state and if they were found on the streets without a permit they were sent to labor camps.  Additionally, church leaders report that many are starving to death from the famine.  Even some parents have left their children as orphans to wander the streets because the pain of helplessly watching them slowly starve to death was too much to bear.

The work of Open Doors was restricted during those 150 days, but on September 17 the workers were ready to begin again distributing Bibles, Christian literature, food, medications and emergency goods.  Then a mere five days later the disheartening news broke that another “100 days of combat” was declared.  After much prayer, the Christian leaders have determined to continue this vital work during the restrictions and have asked that we cover them in prayer.
 

Father, our hearts weep over our brothers and sisters in North Korea who suffer so much hardship simply because they were born in a place ruled by a tyrannical leader.  Comfort them in their suffering; have mercy on them; meet their basic needs of food and shelter; protect them.  Thank you for the bold compassion of those who share even their meager rations with others who have less. And in the midst of this profound darkness may Your light  shine and cause Your church there to grow.

Letters from America
  
Consider sending an e-letter to “Free North Korea Radio” and let the North Koreans know we are praying for them.  Your greeting will be read on the radio in North Korea!   Include your first name, what state you live in, and a brief message.  We ask that you avoid making the message overly complicated as it will be difficult to properly translate.  Send your e-letters to prayer@odusa.org and put "Letters from America" in the subject of the email – you can write as often as you wish!

Praying with you,

The Prayer Force Team





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 December 18, 2009 8:28 PM

Update on Sandul Bibi

Praise God! Sandul and Gulsher Masih have been released from prison. "I am thankful to God he released me from prison," Sandul said. "I am thankful to VOM for helping my family, and I thank my brothers and sisters who wrote me letters in prison. May God bless all of you, and Merry Christmas." We rejoice with Sandul and Gulsher's family.
We encourage you to continue writing letters to believers who remain in prison.
Forward this e-mail to others who have a heart for persecuted Christians, and encourage them to write and pray. Get involved! Pray and write today.




More Info...

Sandul Bibi  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 December 23, 2009 2:06 PM

December 23, 2009

Dear Donna

Pakistani Christians Released

After 14 torturous months in prison, Gulsher Masih and his daughter Ashyana Gulsher (known as Sandal), from the Faisalabad District of Pakistan, were released from prison.  According to information from Compass Direct News, Sandal (20) was falsely accused in 2008 of burning a copy of the Quran and the two were charged with blasphemy.  Once arrested there were delays as judges in the trials asked for witnesses.   A few Muslims gave statements but they gave conflicting reports of the incident.   In addition, each time witnesses were requested, the case was transferred to a new judge, delaying the trails.  Finally, their attorney Khalil Tahir was able to submit clear proof during cross-examination of witnesses that the charges were false.  The presiding judge then dropped all charges and ordered their release.
 

Father, week after week we hear of those who are suffering for their faith.  But today we give You praise for this glimpse of Your work.  Thank You for Your mercy upon Masih and Sandal.  Continue to protect them and give them favor with friends and neighbors that Your Word might bear much fruit in Pakistan.

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 January 01, 2010 10:13 PM

Record Numbers of Vietnamese Attend Christmas Rallies

God has heard your prayers on behalf of Christians in Vietnam.  For the past two years, authorities have granted permission to unregistered house churches in Ho Chi Minh City for Christmas rallies. Compass Direct News reports that last year more than 10,000 people participated in Tao Dan Stadium.  On December 11th of this year, a record breaking 40,000 people met in Ho Chi Minh City to worship God in the Christmas season with upwards of 8,000 people committing their lives to Christ in response to the gospel message.  And then 12,000 people attended a December 20 Christmas rally in Hanoi. While permission was never officially granted for this rally, authorities in Hanoi indicated they would not interfere with the event.
  

Father, as 2009 comes to a close, we give thanks for this clear evidence of your power at work in Vietnam.  We pray that the hearts of the leaders would soften toward Your people and that a mighty revival would wash over this country.

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 January 01, 2010 10:19 PM

Christian Attacked in Jerusalem
  
Yossi Yomtov, a Jewish Christian living in Jerusalem, has been attacked four times in recent months because of his faith in Christ.  He reported to Compass Direct News that the attacks have involved being sprayed by pepper spray and stun guns as well as verbal harassment and being punched in the face.  Some of the assailants have been youths wearing kippahs, cloth skullcaps typically worn by observant Jews.  Others have been teens or young adults of French origin.  Attempts to obtain police help have been largely unsuccessful, though recently the police have agreed to investigate one of the attacks.  To date there has been no progress in the investigation.

Yossi received Christ in 1984 while living in the United States.  He said he became a Christian after he “hit the bottom” – taking drugs and engaging “in illegal activity." Yossi told Compass, “I’m not secretive about my belief like some other people, and I often talk about it.  That’s how many people are aware of me believing in Jesus Christ.”  

Father, we commit Yossi into Your hands of protection. Encourage him in his faith.  As he faithfully speaks about Your Word, cause the seed sown to take root in the hearts of many living in Jerusalem.  In this place where Your Church began, may it flourish.

Praying with you,

The Prayer Force Team

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 January 10, 2010 7:26 AM

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – Firebombs were thrown at three more churches in Malaysia on Sunday and another was splashed with black paint, the latest in a series of assaults on Christian houses of worship following a court decision allowing non-Muslims to use "Allah" to refer to God.

Despite the attacks, thousands of Christians nationwide attended Sunday services and prayed for national unity and an end to the violence.

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 January 13, 2010 6:29 PM

January 13, 2010

Dear Donna, 

Iran Moves to #2 Spot on 2010 World Watch List

Due to the increase of arrests that began in 2008, Iran replaced Saudi Arabia in the #2 position on Open Doors World Watch List. Islam is the official religion in Iran and all laws and regulations must be consistent with the official interpretation of Sharia (Islamic) law. Churches are closely monitored and at least 85 Christians were arrested in 2009 with most having been mistreated in prison, Maryam Rustampoor and Marzieh Amirzadeh were among them. We praise God that they were released from prison, but these brave women, along with hundreds of other believers, still remain at risk inside Iran. 

Not surprisingly, North Korea remains in the #1 position on the WWL for the eighth straight year. Under Communist rule, it is one of only two countries in the top ten positions with a non-Muslim government. The continued targeting of Christians in Kim Jong-Il’s regime in 2009 resulted in arrests, torture and killings. There are an estimated 40,000 to 60,000 Christians in North Korea’s political prisons. The plight of the people of North Korea is desperate.

Saudi Arabia now holds the #3 position on the WWL. The legal system is based on Sharia law. Apostasy – conversion to another religion – is punishable by death if the accused does not recant. Give thanks that in 2009 there were no reports of Christians killed or physically harmed for their faith.
 

View Open Doors 2010 World Watch Listfor a complete listing of all the countires where persecution of Christians is most severe. 

Father, we pray in quietude as we gather to intercede for the nations. We pray You would hasten that day when “every knee shall bow… and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord….” (Philippians 2:10-11). In the meantime, we lift up the persecuted that You would comfort and strengthen them to endure faithfully the life set before them, that You would release them from tyranny and that their suffering would not be in vain. We pray for a revival to sweep across the globe.

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 January 14, 2010 1:40 PM

Brothers and Sisters,
There has been a terrible earthquake in Haiti, and many people are injured or dead. I am asking everyone to pray and especially asking the prayer warriors and intercessors to pray for the many victims of this terrible disaster, for the children who are orphaned, for the parents who have lost children, for those who have lost loved ones, for the families separated, for the injured and for the economic  implications of a disaster of this size. Many international charities and asking for donations and relief workers are also on their way or already there to provide help. Please pray for the relief workers, the missionaries, and those who give spiritual guidance. Thank you and God Bless! Donna
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 January 19, 2010 9:27 PM

Your prayers can help Muslim believers hold their 'shield of faith' high.
Read More>>
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 January 27, 2010 7:00 PM

. 

Christians Jailed, Believers' Homes Destroyed in Chiapas

In a series of incidents in the Chiapas region of southern Mexico, Christians have been arrested and jailed, and homes and buildings belonging to Christian families destroyed by leaders of the local community. Local leaders have harassed Christians for months, telling the believers that they need to leave their new faith and return to traditional beliefs. On January 17, eight believers were arrested on the charge that it is a legal violation to not support traditional events and that this is a sign that the Christians don't care about their community.

After being held in custody for 24 hours the men were released. Open Doors staff are now working to help those involved and have filed a case at the local Office for Indigenous Justice in San Cristobal de Las Casas.

Lord, we pray for justice in Chiapas. For those who have lost their homes we pray for shelter. Soften the hearts of local authorities toward the Christians and bring about reconciliation.

Praying with you,

The Prayer Force Team

 

 

 

Believer worshipping God  
Pray for Religious Freedom




 

 


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 February 02, 2010 4:48 AM

On the one-year anniversary of Gao Zhisheng's disappearance, ChinaAid is humbly asking for your help to expand our efforts in raising awareness on Gao's behalf. Please read the complete message below.

On February 4, 2009, Gao Zhisheng was abducted from his home and disappeared into the black hole of the Chinese detention system. After one year, Gao is still missing - his condition and whereabouts are still unknown.

Rumors of Gao's death have viciously circulated since December, 2009, inflicting pain and despair on his family, and weakening the resolve of many human rights organizations. Some believe that the Chinese government will never yield, and that human rights for the Chinese will remain an elusive myth.

Yet the Chinese government's silence cracked ever so slightly on January 21, 2010. Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Ma Zhaoxu publicly acknowledged Gao's case to the media for the first time in over a year in a news conference: "The relevant judicial authorities have decided this case, and we should say this person, according to Chinese law, is where he should be."

ChinaAid believes that based on the minister's comments and other inside reports, Gao Zhisheng is still alive, but suffering incredible torture. We will not give up on Gao until he is guaranteed his basic human rights with dignity before the law.

There is hope! And now it's time to bring up the intensity to a new level.

24-Hour Free Gao Ad Campaign

On February 4, 2010, the anniversary of Gao Zhisheng's disappearance, ChinaAid will be launching a one-day, 24-hour targeted issue-based advertising campaign to spread the news about Gao. The ads will feature a basic message, and urge people to learn more about Gao Zhisheng's case. See banner ads live on-line, Thursday, February 4, 2010, hosted on www.DrudgeReport.com

The chosen site boasts traffic of up to 25 million page views per day, with over 2 million unique site visitors - promising a high number of concerned citizens learning about Gao Zhisheng for the first time. We hope to effectively generate new interest and add more pressure to the Chinese government to respond.

The sample below illustrates the primary design for the 24-hour campaign. These banner ads will be animated, linking to a webpage sharing Gao's story, and directing the viewer to www.FreeGao.com, to Sign the Petition, and to Contact their U.S. Representative or the Office of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

365 ad framesWe humbly ask you to consider being a part of this next push on behalf of Gao Zhisheng, to get his story out and urge the international community to step forward to raise the alarm.

Please consider donating to specially offset the cost of this ad campaign, as we step up the campaign to the next level on the Anniversary of Gao Zhisheng's disappearance. Every small effort helps.

Donate Today

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 February 03, 2010 6:15 PM

February 3, 2010

Dear Donna, 

Violence Erupts in Jos, Nigeria

Attacks against Christians continue in Jos, Nigeria. According to a Compass Direct report the violence began when Muslim youths attacked worshipers during a church service on January 17th. The aggression soon escalated. The Christian Association of Nigeria stated at a press conference that 10 church buildings were burned and that 27 Christians are still missing however local police estimate that over 300 lives were lost.

Father, we pray for peace to reign in this region of Nigeria located between the Islamic north and Christian south. May the darkness in the hearts of the Muslim youth be broken by the light of Your gospel. Today, comfort those who mourn and strengthen their faith.

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 February 03, 2010 6:24 PM

Christian shopkeeper Imran Masih, last July, was falsely accused of desecrating the Quran. Compass Direct reports that a neighboring shopkeeper accused Masih of tearing out pages of the Quran and burning them. Masih explained to investigators that the papers were a heap of old records he had gathered while cleaning his store. Family members said that the neighboring shopkeeper had fabricated the blasphemy case against him because of a business dispute. Sadly, two weeks ago, 22 year-old Masih was sentenced to a life term in prison and fined more than $1,000.

Father, our hearts break over this conviction. Encourage him, strengthen him. Bring about justice. While others mean it for harm, we call on You to work it out for the good both of Masih and Your church in Pakistan.

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 February 04, 2010 9:11 AM

Baptist ministers have been arrested in Haiti for trying to remove children that were orphaned in the earthquake. They say that they were trying to rescue the orphans. Please pray about this situation and I will let you know if I hear anything else! Donna  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 February 04, 2010 9:16 AM

PORT-AU-PRINCE (Reuters) – The U.S. and Haitian governments are holding talks on the fate of 10 American missionaries accused of illegally trying to take children out of the quake-hit Caribbean country, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Wednesday.

Haitian authorities said they would decide on Thursday whether to pursue a case against the missionaries, who were arrested on Friday trying to cross into the Dominican Republic from Haiti with a busload of 33 children they said were orphaned by the January 12 quake.

Haiti's prime minister, Jean-Max Bellerive, said on Wednesday the death toll from the quake exceeded 200,000 people, raising previous estimates of 150,000 to 200,000 dead.

In Washington, Clinton said for the first time the two governments were discussing the missionaries' case, which is diplomatically sensitive because the United States is heading a massive relief operation after the earthquake wrecked the capital, Port-au-Prince, and killed up to 200,000 people.

"We are engaged in discussions with the Haitian government about the appropriate disposition of their cases," she said.

The State Department, which has been at pains to avoid any impression it might be interfering in the matter, said on Tuesday it had not been involved in any broad discussions about the missionaries' case or any possible prosecution.

The accused missionaries vehemently deny they were engaged in child trafficking. They said they were just trying to help some of the thousands of orphans left destitute and abandoned by the quake.

"It was unfortunate, whatever the motivation, that this group of Americans took matters into their own hands," Clinton said.

'VICTIMS OF SCAM'

Haitian officials said the detained Americans, most of whom belong to an Idaho-based Baptist church, had no documents proving the children were orphans and no official permission to take them out of the country, which meant the group faced possible kidnapping charges.

But a Haitian lawyer hired to represent the missionaries said on Wednesday the Americans "were the victims of a scam."

Attorney Edwin Coq said the scheme was orchestrated by a local pastor who claimed his orphanage had been destroyed in the quake and he had no means to continue feeding or housing the 33 children.

"The Americans are missionaries, they were naive. They had no idea they were violating the law. They were acting in good faith and they just wanted to help," Coq told reporters.

Five of the missionaries were questioned by a judge on Tuesday and the remaining five gave testimony on Wednesday, the prosecutor in the case, Mazarre Fortil, told Reuters.

"Tomorrow, my decision will be known. Tomorrow, everybody will know what we decide," Fortil said.

Bellerive said the case was stealing attention from the plight of Haitians.

"I believe it's a distraction for the Haitian people because they are talking more now about 10 people than they are about 1 million people suffering in the streets," he said.

Speculation about the case has increased after evidence emerged that most of the children intercepted with the missionaries were not orphans. Haitian police say some parents admitted to handing over their children to the American Baptists in the belief they would get an education and a better life.

Haiti's government has tightened adoption procedures since the quake, saying it feared unscrupulous traffickers could try to take advantage of the disaster by spiriting away vulnerable children. Officials said they have already had reports of trafficking of minors, and even of human organs.

CONFLICTING VIEWS

The U.S. public, which has donated tens of millions of dollars to the Haiti relief effort, is following the case of the detained Americans closely.

Ordinary Haitians expressed mixed views about the controversy, which highlights the extreme poverty of the most underdeveloped

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 February 06, 2010 7:58 AM

 Sunday, 8:00 PM

I would like prayer for the poor Lakota on Pine Ridge....this is so very heartbreaking...especially in light of the fact that our country rushes to help other countries in need (which they should) but does not seem concerned about those that are freezing and starving within our own borders!!  Please pray that food, heaters, water and food will get to both adults and children before they freeze or starve to death!!

State of Emergency Declared on the Pine Ridge Reservation

From Kamora Herrington via Facebook:

A State of Emergency has been declared on the Pine Ridge Lakota “Sioux” Indian Reservation. People have died. Many more people are at risk of freezing to death. Another cold front is coming in, yet where is the national media coverage?

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 February 10, 2010 11:31 AM

Fourteen Iranian Christians in Prison After Authorities Crack Down

Following several waves of arrests throughout Iran, at least fourteen Christians are now in prison for their faith. Three of them - Maryam Jalili, Mitra Zahmati and Farzan Matin - are being held in Tehran's notorious Evin Prison. In Shiraz seven Christians - Parviz Khaladj, Mehdi Furutan, Roxana Furouyi, Behrouz Sadegh-Khanjani, Abdol Reza Ali Haghnejad, Iman Farzad and one identified only as Mahyar - have been detained since January 11th; six of them have been told they will be charged with apostasy. Two brothers in the northern city of Rasht, Davoot Nejatsabet and Yousef Nadarkhani, are in prison. Two more Christians were arrested in Isfahan.

According to Compass Direct News most of Iran's human rights lawyers have either fled the country or been imprisoned. The few lawyers remaining regard Christian cases as low priority making it virtually impossible for detained Christians to get legal representation. Every Iranian Muslim knows that to become a Christian involves breaking the law and risking your life as apostasy is a criminal offence and the judge may issue a death sentence if he so chooses.

Father, we praise You that in the midst of this adversity You are growing Your church in Iran. We call each prisoner by name. Protect and encourage them and multiply their witness while in prison. Persuade the human rights lawyers to represent them and in Your power, free them.

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 February 14, 2010 3:36 PM

Maryam Jalili

Location: Iran (Islamic Republic of)
Arrested: December 2009

Maryam Jalili, Mitra Zahmati and Farzan Matin, are imprisoned in Iran following their arrest while gathered at a house church to celebrate Christmas. On Dec. 24, Maryam, Mitra, and Farzan were among 12 Christians arrested by security forces in Pakdasht, Iran. After a week without information, family members contacted authorities and demanded to know where they were being held. Officials told the families that the Christians would be released the same day, but instead they were secretly transferred to the notorious Evin prison in Tehran. Twelve of the believers were released on Jan. 4.

More Info...
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 March 09, 2010 7:00 AM

JOS, Nigeria – The U.S. government and human rights activists called Tuesday for Nigeria to investigate and prosecute those responsible for the deaths of more than 200 unarmed people in renewed violence between Christians and Muslims.

Acting President Goodluck Jonathan had promised that the fighting would stop after more than 300 people were slain in January. Jonathan fired his national security adviser late Monday night following the weekend violence.

"After the January killings, the villages should have been properly protected," U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said. "Clearly, previous efforts to tackle the underlying causes have been inadequate, and in the meantime the wounds have festered and grown deeper."

Human Rights Watch also urged Jonathan to provide protection for those in the small villages surrounding Jos, a central Nigerian city that has become the fault line for religious violence in the region.

Those who survived attacks Sunday in three mostly Christian villages said security forces never provided them any guards, even though Jos itself has remained under a dusk-til-dawn curfew since January's fighting.

"It's time to draw a line in the sand," Human Rights Watch researcher Corinne Dufka said in a statement Tuesday. "The authorities need to protect these communities, bring the perpetrators to book and address the root causes of violence."

Police say they have arrested more than 90 people suspected of inciting the violence. Some described it as a reprisal attack for Muslim deaths in January, while others said Fulani cattlemen wanted to take  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 March 10, 2010 2:45 PM

March 10, 2010

Dear Donna

Islamic Assailants Kill Hundreds of Christians near Jos, Nigeria

A tragic genocide took place yesterday morning in Plateau state, Nigeria. Several hundred Christians, including many women and children, were killed with machetes by ethnic Fulani Muslims in a violent rampage. “We were woken up by gunshots in the middle of the night, and before we knew what was happening, our houses were torched and they started hacking down people,” survivor Musa Gyang told media.

According to Compass News the attack on Sunday is the latest in several religious clashes in the state in recent months that have claimed lives and property. Plateau state is a predominantly Christian state in a country almost evenly divided between Christians and Muslims. The Muslim minority has been contesting ownership of some parts of the state, leading to frequent clashes.

Father, we pray that You would be with the Christians that are still living in the midst of the chaos in Jos. We ask that You would bring peace and civility to the region now. We pray that the violence would not spread any further, but instead stop completely. Please give wisdom to President Goodluck Jonathan, particularly as he is meeting to discuss strategies to prevent clashes spreading to neighboring states.

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 March 10, 2010 3:06 PM

Iranian Pastor Tortured, Threatened for ‘Converting Muslims’ 

Rev. Wilson Issavi, 65, was accused for “converting Muslims” and thereby arrested after finishing a house meeting at a friend’s home in Isfahan. Issavi is now being tortured in prison and threatened with execution, sources reported to Compass News. Arrests taking place over the last month seem to be part of an anti-Christian sweep in Isfahan, particularly targeting Christian leaders. One regional analyst, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the Iranian government is set on crushing religious freedom within the country. “The recent spate of church leader arrests provides clear evidence of the Iranian authorities’ desperate determination to strangle the growing church movement, along with all other forms of perceived political dissent,” he said.

Another case in point: on Feb. 28th, Isfahan residents Hamid Shafiee and his wife Reyhaneh Aghajary (both converts from Islam and house church leaders) were arrested at their home. Aghajary was at home with a group of other Christians when police came for her and her husband, who was not at home. Police handcuffed her and, upon finding boxes of Bibles, began beating her. Her husband Shafiee was arrested an hour later when he returned to the house. Their fate and whereabouts are still unknown.

Father, we ask that You would work mightily in the area of Isfahan, and continue to strengthen the Christians and church leaders there as they suffer for Your Gospel. We pray for religious freedom in Iran, and for Your Word to pierce the hearts of the Iranian authorities. We ask that Your Holy Spirit would minister to Rev. Wilson Issavi in his pain and hardship in prison, and comfort the families of Hamid Shafiee and Reyhaneh Aghajary as they wait to hear their kin’s outcome.

Praying with you,

The Prayer Force Team

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 July 14, 2010 6:56 PM

North African Christians are being comforted by prayer and support.
Read Update>>

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 July 15, 2010 6:01 PM

July 15, 2010

Dear Donna

“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed day by day. For this slight momentary affliction is preparing us for an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen.” 1 Cor. 4:16-18

Muslim Mob Kills Wife and Children of Christian in Pakistan

On June 21, Jamshed Masih left his house for work while his wife and four children were still singing hymns before breakfast. Later that morning, a neighbor, Ali Murtaza, witnessed Masih’s 11-year-old son buying detergent for his mother at a local shop. The shopkeeper asked him if he was a Christian; the child responded that he was. “The shopkeeper refused to give him the packet of detergent and spoke harshly to him, ‘I don’t sell to any non-Muslim, you are not welcome here, don’t you dare ever come to my shop again,’” Murtaza said. Soon after, a mob of local residents came to the family’s door, led by the Muslim religious leader, Maulana Mahfooz Khan. The mob confronted Masih’s wife, Razia, and accused the boy of blaspheming Muhammad, the prophet of Islam. When she protested, they brutally murdered her and her children.

The family had recently moved to the area due to a work transfer for Masih. The Muslims there had notified the religious leader, Khan, saying, “We cannot allow these non-Muslims to live here, they will be a bad influence on our children.” Local authorities are now too afraid of the Muslim leader to file charges, according to Compass News. Masih has filed a complaint with the chief minister of Punjab Province, begging him for justice. “We condemn this brutal murder of innocent children in the name of Islam,” local pastor Saleem Mall said. “This has to stop now. We appeal to the government to let us live in peace.”

Father, we are devastated to hear of Masih’s loss and the persecution he faces. Please give him strength as he mourns his loved ones, and let him experience Your comfort and love in the midst of such pain. We pray for justice, freedom, and peace in Pakistan, and for protection over the Christians who remain opposed in Muslim dominant areas.
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