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The Church Persecuted

Here, we aim to offer support for those committed to pray in support of Christians around the world who face persecution.  In particular, we include below brief details of the nation for this month.  This year we will be featuring the 'next twelve nations' rather than starting again at [1] in January. This might result in the occasional repeat as the order might have changed since last year.  For further information to support you as you pray, click on the links below.

Image Vietnam
Leader:  President Tran Dai Quang
Population:  95.4 million (8.4 million Christians)
Main Religion:     Buddhism

World Watch List Rank:  18

Local and national government authorities persecute the Christian minority through their laws.

Believers from ethnic minority groups face the greatest persecution. Seen as traitors of their culture and identity, they face harassment, violent attacks and social exclusion. Villagers collude with local Communist authorities, beating believers, kicking them out of their villages and stoning places of worship during meetings. Non-Christian relatives cut family ties and deny inheritance. Christian bloggers and political activists have been arrested and sentenced.

Please Pray:

  • That the God will build up the faith of new believers like the Hmong
  • That the light of Christ will shine through those who are being pressured to return to their family's faith
  • That the Holy Spirit will move government leaders to loosen restictions on the Christian minority

More Information:

"They came to Dohns* house more than once, forcing him to deny his faith in the Lord, but he refused", said Open Doors partner, Cang*."They destroyed his house, savaged his crops and kicked him out of the village. But despite being treated like that, he spread [the Gospel] to his relatives.Three families related to done then became Christian.

In July 2016, an angered policeman and around 20 other men came to Dohn's house, armed with clubs and knives.

"They pointed at him and came at him, shouted that 'he follows Jesus' and beat him [until they thought he was dead]." Dohn was forced to flee his home. Not only is he not able to minister to his village, but Dohn now experiences frequent headaches from the attack.

Vietnam is one of the few remaning Communist countries, but change is taking place. There is a rising private economy (the 'doi moi policy') which has allowed many Communist leaders to become rich, leading to an ideolgical crisis. In an attempt to maintain control, the regime operates harshly against deviant thought, including Christianty, which is still seen as foreign influence and highly suspicious.

Churches are closely monitored and there are reports that even youth gatherings were raided during the 2017 reporting period. The issue of church building permits is regulated by Decree No 92 and is handled by the authorities in a highly restrictive way.  Land-grabbing by the authorities also continues.

Though no one knows the exact figure, the majority of Vietnamese Christians are from tribal backgrounds. They face particular pressure from the families and communities to return to traditional faiths. Some tribal movements are trying to establish an independant state, giving the government further reasons to monitor tribal Christian closely.

Despite the pressures faced by Christians in Vietnam, Huu and Nyuget remain hopeful. "It is through persecution that we grow," Nyuget says.  "It is a blessing to be part of Christ's suffering."


*Names changed for security reasons

For more details please see the following website:

Open Doors      Christian Solidarity Worldwide       Release International

 
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© 2018 Gateway Baptist Church
Pastor: Revd Paul Jackson MTh BA
churchoffice@gatewaybaptist.org.uk
www.gatewaybaptist.org.uk
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