2/18/2021 (Voice of the Persecuted) Eritrea: Population 5,3illion, Christians: 2,5 million
Christians from non-traditional denominations face the harshest persecution in Eritrea, both from the government and from the Eritrean Orthodox Church (EOC). The EOC is the only Christian denomination recognized by the government, and it is tightly controlled by those in power.
Government security forces monitor phone calls, scrutinize activity, and conduct countless raids which target Christians, seize Christian materials and damage house churches. Christians can be arrested and imprisoned without trial. Many Christians are held in inhumane prisons because of their faith, and their loved ones often do not know where they are or even if they are still alive. In June 2020, the UN reported there was no meaningful progress to address human rights violations in Eritrea.
Non-EOC Christians and Christians from a Muslim background face extreme opposition from their families and communities and from the state, often being denied crucial social services and other resources.
Evangelical churches must meet secretly. The government actively seeks to infiltrate these underground churches and imprison their leaders. About 600 believers are known to remain in prison, including several top leaders. Imprisoned Christians are not given a trial or allowed to see their families, many of whom do not know where their loved ones are imprisoned or even if they are still alive. Christians simply disappear and are assumed to be in government prisons. The conditions inside these “prisons” are some of the harshest in the world. Christian prisoners are provided meager rations and held in shipping containers in extreme desert conditions for years.
Bibles are available, but the government tracks each Bible sold. Christian literature is highly regulated, and most believers who want Bibles must smuggle them in. For this reason, many believers must access Scripture by digital means.
- Pray for President Isaias Afwerki that he will have an encounter with the Living God and that he will be convicted and stop Christian persecution.
- Pray that believers’ faith would grow, that their love would increase, and that their faith would be steadfast in persecution and affliction.
- Pray Eritrean Christians and church leaders would have wisdom and opportunities to engage their government on the topic of religious freedom.
- Pray for those suffering terrible conditions in prison, held because of their faith, and for the Christian women and children whose husbands and fathers are in prison.
- Pray, ask the Lord will show grace and comfort to the families who do not know of the whereabouts of their imprisoned loved ones and provide for their spiritual and physical needs.
- Pray that the NGOs will have wisdom in how to empower believers, supporting them in all their needs.
- Pray that the Pastors will encourage their saints.
- Pray to the Lord that believers will continue testify and share the gospel in very difficult circumstances.
- Pray for easy access to the internet and that both Believers and Muslims will see messages that encourage and or convict them.
- Pray the Lord will enable Christians to forgive their persecutors.
- Pray to the Lord that His hand of protection is over His Eritrean Church and that He will bind the forces of darkness and grow HIS CHURCH.
Again, we want to lift up persecuted witnesses to the Lord:
- Leah Sharibu and Alice, prisoners of Boko Haram since 2018, pray for their release
- Pray pastor Wang Yi to be released from prison.
- Pray Pray for Anita, a Christian convert persecuted for her faith in Iran.
- For the release of Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani from Iran, and his family as their Persecution continues. Pastor Nadarkhani is serving the second year of his six-year sentence, recently reduced from ten years.
Andy, Persecution Watch Prayer Call Moderator
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What is Persecution Watch?
Persecution Watch is a U.S. national prayer conference call ministry that prays specifically for the global Persecuted Church. For over a decade, Blaine Scogin led this national network of believers who faithfully pray for the persecuted and the global harvest for the Kingdom of God.
The group meets via a free call-in service every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday night at 9pm Eastern (please check your time zone). Blaine also served as Prayer Director for Voice of the Persecuted and our missions became one. The prayer mission of Persecution Watch is an important part of our own.
With the passing of Blaine into glory on December 26, 2019, Voice of the Persecuted is committed to continue the prayer conference call for the persecuted along with our dedicated prayer warrior team.
On occasion, persecuted brothers and sisters have been invited on the call to share the trials they’re facing. The team serves to encourage them by washing their feet in Spirit led prayer.
Time is often reserved for those on the call to ask questions. We believe this helps to gain a better understanding of the situation that persecuted Christians endure in their specific nations. Q&A also helps us to focus our prayers based on their current needs.
Persecution Watch also hosts callers who want to pray united from other nations. If your heart is perplexed by the sufferings of our persecuted brothers and sisters, you no longer need to pray alone. We welcome all who desire to pray for the persecuted church and consider it a joy to pray together with you.
If you’re new to the call and can’t find your voice, listen in and pray silently or on mute. We are grateful and thank the Lord for bringing us all together to pray in agreement for our persecuted family in Christ. We can all be prayer warriors on this call!
NOTE: Persecution Watch has a new email address for the prayer team and those who would like to receive urgent prayer requests, weekly call prayer points and notification of special prayer events and special guest speakers.
Please fill out the form below to be included in our new distribution list to receive this important information. We are grateful for your prayers and to the Lord for guiding us as we continue the Persecution Watch prayer call mission.
Note to Voice of the Persecuted (VOP) readers: The Persecution Watch prayer team is also the prayer team of Voice of the Persecuted. SIGN UP today.