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I recently received this email update from Prisoner Alert.  Please pray for Shuang Shuying; you can also visit Prisoner Alert’s website to learn how to write her an encouraging letter. 

Authorities denied 79-year-old Shuang Shuying’s request to visit her deathly ill husband, 91-year-old Hua Zaichen. China Aid Association reports that officials said if her husband dies before she is released from prison, she will be allowed to see his body for 10 minutes and would have to be chained, handcuffed and shackled. We encourage you to continue praying and writing to Shuang Shuying. She has been strengthened by the prayers and help of believers like you. Also, write to the Chinese government requesting she be released. Send this e-mail to others who have a heart for persecuted believers and encourage them to write as well. Pray and write today!

I received this email from International Christian Concern last week.  Click here for more of the story on ICC’s website, here for ICC’s page on Iraq, and here for the full story from AsiaNews (I encourage you to look at the other stories featured at the bottom of that page).  Please pray for Christ’s followers in Iraq–that God would give them strength and a greater faith in him–and that their persecutors would come to know the grace and salvation he offers. 

10/23/08 Iraq (AsiaNews) More Violence in Mosul: Father and Son Killed Because They Were Christian- The murder of Christians has continued in the Iraqi city of Mosul. Yesterday in Mosul, in the Sanaa neighborhood, a father and son were killed: no further details are available at this time on the method of the attack or the identity of the two victims, but their death is being viewed in connection with the violence in recent weeks that has emptied half of the Christian population of Mosul.

The last of this week’s Prayer Points from ICC; click here to subscribe. 

In the past nine months six Christians have been martyred for their faith by the Islamic extremists in Somalia. The last victim was 22 year old Ahmadey Osman Nur . Nur was a Muslim who had converted to Christianity.  He was attending a Muslim wedding ceremony when a bodyguard shot and killed him. According to witnesses attending the wedding, Nur had requested the Shik who was performing the ceremony to summarize the wedding in the Somali language because the ceremony was performed in the Arabic language which many guests did not understand. The Shik became offended at this request and asked one of his bodyguards “to silence the apostate.” The Shik had recently been recruited into the Muslim militant group Al Shabab.

Pray for the friends and family of Mr. Nur to be comforted during this time of loss, and that they will forgive his killers.
Pray for divine protection over the tiny Christian minority in Somalia as they go through these difficult times.
Pray that the militant group Al Shabab will weaken and they will surrender to the Army of the Lord..
More from ICC:
Fox News has reported the murder of Gayle Williams, a Christian aid worker in Kabul, Afghanistan. Gayle Williams was a South African-British dual national and was  34 yrs old. She was worked with a Christian organization called SERVE – Serving Emergency Relief and Vocational Enterprises, an organization specifically serving the disabled.  On Oct. 20th, as Gayle was walking to work, she was gunned down by  Taliban gunmen. A spokesman for the Taliban told the Associated Press ” This women came to Afghanistan to teach Christianity to the people of Afghanistan. Our leaders issued a decree to kill this woman. This morning our people killed her in Kabul.”
 
Pray for comfort for the family and friends of Gayle Williams, and that they will forgive her killers.
Pray for the salvation of the men who committed this horrible crime.
Pray that the Taliban will have the veil lifted from their eyes so they too can find salvation in the Lord.
More from International Christian Concern:
According to The Observer not only are Christians homes being burned down in the state of Orissa, but Christians are now  being forced to convert to Hinduism or die. At least 59 people have died, nearly 50,000 are homeless and thousands of homes and churches have been burned to the ground within the last two months. One 32 old woman and mother said that neighbors told her “If you go on being a Christian, we will burn your house and your children in front of you, so make up your mind quickly.” Reluctantly she gave in. Totally broken she says “Inside I am still praying for Jesus to give me peace and to take me out of this situation.”   About half of the Christians of one village converted to Hinduism and the rest fled to the jungle to escape.
 
Pray for the Christian families to be rescued from this terrible situation and find peace in their hearts.
Pray that the homeless Christians living in the jungle will find shelter and food.
Pray against the powers of darkness over India, and for Jesus to make Himself known to the suffering church of India.

I just received the following from International Christian Concern; to subscribe to these email updates, click here

Compass Direct News reports that violence against Christians continues to escalate in Mosul, Iraq. “Families are still fleeing as threats, bombings and deaths persist in Mosul” stated Father Warda. At least 1,700 families have recently fled Mosul leaving homes and businesses. An estimated 15 Christians have been killed in the past 2 ½ weeks, including a 15 year old boy and an aged man in a wheel chair. Many of the Christians fleeing Mosul must leave with only the clothing on their backs, and many are unable to afford to pay for food and shelter for their families.  Church leaders in Mosul recently asked  Prime Minister Nuri al Maliki to send the army to Mosul to assist the approximately 1000 extra policemen who were dispatched last week to provide security for the Christians in the city. 
Pray that the families who have left everything behind every to escape  persecution will find shelter, food, and security.
Pray for divine protection over the Christians who cannot flee and remain in Mosul. 
Pray that the Iraqi government will  provide security for the Christians and other minorities in Mosul and other areas of Iraq, and those responsible for these crimes will be brought to justice.
More from ICC:
Islamic extremists recently beat Mr. Ibrahim Yusuf (different name for security reasons), a Muslim Background Believer and Somali church leader in the capital of Addis Ababa.  Mr. Yusuf was on his way to secure documents that a martyred friend had left behind   containing information about the persecution of Somali churches. According to Yusuf, a Somali man entered the house where these documents had been safeguarded demanding to see them. Yusuf refused and later, when he left with the documents, he was accosted by five Muslim men who beat him mercilessly.. The men fled as police arrived. Yusuf is still recovering while two of the men have been apprehended. The documents are in safe hands.

Pray for Ibrahim’s full recovery of body and soul, that he will remain steadfast in the faith, and that he will have compassion on those who meant to harm him.
Pray that the truth held in these documents would be revealed and used to bring about greater tolerance and religious freedom in the Horn of Africa.
Pray for Somali converts overall who face persecution wherever they live, even as refugees in other countries like Ethiopia.

 

 

 

More from ICC:
Compass Direct News reports that apart from coordinated and intense international pressure, it is likely that the Iranian government will soon ratify a bill that will make “apostasy” for leaving Islam, a capital crime. On Sept. 9th the parliament approved the bill by a 196-7 vote calling for a mandatory death sentence for apostates. The world’s focus on Iran’s nuclear activities has provided cover for many deliberate human rights violations, even hiding this article in a 113-page penal code from some of the reformers in parliament. We have been urged to contact our representatives in our respective governments to protest, as some believe this bill is the act of a government desperately trying to hang on to power. The current regime is tightening control over its peoples lives as much as possible, which has been interpreted as the sign of a weakening regime.
Please contact your state representatives in Congress to request pressure be placed squarely upon the Iranian government to reject this bill.
Pray for the acquittal of two believers, Mahmoud Azad and Arash Basirat, who were charged with apostasy this summer and await a court date.
Pray that the Iranian Church would stand unconquerable in Him, revealing the vast difference between Jesus Christ and Allah.
More from ICC:
More than 2,000 Christians in Marxist leaning Eritrea are imprisoned for their faith.. About half the population is Sunni Muslim, and the balance is Christian with a small fraction of Buddhists and Bahai.   The government views leaders of large unregistered churches as threats and fear they will expose abuses and conditions in the prisons. As a result it is extremely difficult for relatives to visit those in prison, and inmates are not allowed to receive or send letters. One evangelist incarcerated since 2006 for his activities is receiving especially harsh treatment because of his ministry to inmates, according to Compass Direct News. Teame Weldegebriel is close to despair languishing at the Mai Sirwa Maximum Security prison. “It seems that hell has broken loose on me,” Weldegebriel told Compass sources. “Please tell the brethren to continue praying for me. I am not sure I will see them again.” Teame is considered dangerous due to his boldness in sharing Christ, leading to the conversion of many. His family is concerned for his health, and has not been allowed to visit him.
Pray for the Spirit’s sustenance of Teame, as many inmates are said to have insufficient food.
Pray that Eritrea would finally implement its 1997 constitution which provides for religious freedom.
Pray that the many reported converts to Christ in Eritrea would stand strong in the faith regardless of the difficulties being experienced. 
I received the following four prayer requests in an email from International Christian Concern; to sign up for the email updates, monthly newsletter, or press releases, click here.
The Chinese government has long stated that it respects freedom of worship, while critics say in practice believers face arrest, fines, and sometimes detention. China has at least 40 million active Christians, with numbers divided between the state-sanctioned and the underground or “house” churches. One of these house churches, the Qiyu Blessings Church in Chengdu City, Sichuan Province, is mounting a breakthrough challenge as a test case for the true extent of religious freedom that the government says its people enjoy. The Shuangliu County Bureau of Religious Affairs stopped the church from trying to hold services in a local hotel, confiscating bibles in the process, the group Human Rights in China reports. Wang Li, the church’s leader, now wants to take the Bureau to court hoping that “this will be a big event for the house churches, as it’s a way to encourage dialogue with the government and make the Bureau act within the law.” This appears to be the first time a house church has sought to press its rights in court and have the ban against house church declared illegal.
 Pray that the Chengdou court will hear the case, and the matter will open a dialogue that will result in freedom of worship for the house churches.
 Pray that the Chinese government, including local government authorities will abide with the court’s findings
 Pray for China’s believers to be secure, glad, and strong in their faith regardless of governmental stance.
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