Churches in Indonesia will have armed guards for their Christmas services this year.
As we reported in an earlier blog, persecution in Indonesia has increased in recent months. Because of this, the government in some parts of the country feels the need to provide protection.
Christmas for Persecuted Believers
This won’t be the first Christmas that the church in Indonesia has faced heightened risks of terrorist attacks. According to a news article by Today, 18 people were killed in 2000 during coordinated bombings of Christmas Eve services.
The Islamic State movement is believed to have reached Indonesia, influencing more violence against Christians in the country with the world’s largest Muslim population. Because of this, 1,500 officers will guard churches during their Christmas services.
As we gather in the safety of our homes or our churches this Christmas to celebrate the birth of Jesus, it is likely that many believers around the world face a similar threat to those in Indonesia. Yet they still celebrate, whether in secret or in public church gatherings, because our Savior is worth it.
Wherever you are in the world this Christmas, would you take time to support our brothers and sisters around the world who are facing persecution for their faith? What better time to support the global body of Christ than when we celebrate the glorious event of Jesus coming to earth so that salvation could be offered to all nations!
How to Support Believers
Here are a few ways you could support persecuted believers this Christmas season:
- Research the top persecuted countries on the World Watch List and choose one or two to focus on in prayer. Discuss these countries with your family or small group at Christmas gatherings and spend time praying together.
- Choose one of the past Secret Church prayer focus countries. Read the blogs to get to know what persecution is like in those areas. You might choose one from this list. Think about how you can share this information and encourage other people to pray.
- Consider giving to support persecuted believers around the world. A few ministries that directly help persecuted Christians are Open Doors and Voice of the Martyrs. You might also consider giving to Radical so that we can continue to produce resources in multiple languages for people to use all over the world.