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Readers Talk to Us Story

Persecution Report

Anna
Anna

Nine-year-old Anna F. and her family read VOM publications and pray for persecuted Christians. After learning about Christians who worship in “underground” (secret) churches, Anna wrote the following report.

“Some Christians in the world are not as blessed as we are. In the morning, as we get up to go to church, we don’t even think about the risk that the police could find our beloved church today. Think of this: You’re in the underground church, praying, with about 50 Christians around you when suddenly, an officer bursts in the hidden door of the underground church.“‘Just as I thought. A bunch of Christians!’ he says to another officer. You are afraid. Will he arrest you too? Your fears come true. The officer grabs the pastor and you. He shoves you roughly at the other officer. ‘Take this one to the prison,’ he commands. Your prison cell is tiny and dark. You are angry and afraid.

“You pray to God, ‘Lord, why are you making me suffer like this? I know you want me to love my enemies, but how can I love these people who have thrown me in jail? Lord, I’m helpless in here. You’re the only one who can help me. Please help me now.’ You can feel the love of the Holy Spirit flooding through you. You know you have been blessed.

“These Christians need help. Pray for these Christians tonight as you go to bed.”


Spotlight Story

News from Iran

Interesting Fact
Farsi is the main language of Iran. Unlike English, Farsi is read from right to left. So, scroll bars on Farsi websites are on the left side of the screen instead of the right.

Christians in Iran
Iran is a Muslim country, and many Christians in Iran have been imprisoned for their faith. Reports say that the Christians in prison suffer from harsh treatment, including not being allowed to sleep enough, solitary confinement (being alone in a closed space), long periods of questioning by guards, loudspeakers preaching Islam constantly, threats to harm their family, insults, and lack of medical care.

Note: Find out how to write Christian prisoners in Iran at www.prisoneralert.com.


Spotlight Story

News from China

Interesting Fact
The China Daily newspaper reported recently that more than 400 dogs in China were rescued from becoming dinner at restaurants. Many of the dogs were stolen pets. The thieves planned to sell them as food. A group of 200 citizens helped free the dogs.

Christians in China
The Chinese government seems to be cracking down on Christianity in some places in China. In April, officials arrested more than 150 worshipers at a Beijing house church. Authorities want churches to register with the government as official churches. Many Christians meet in unofficial house churches instead.

The Beijing church of 1,000 members is not an official church. The disagreements between the church and the government continued after the arrests. “Everyone should cherish the social stability in China,” said the government newspaper.

What Do You Think?: The church members believe they are obeying God by continuing to meet together. They did try to register with the government for two years, but were not successful in getting government approval. Should they stop meeting to create “social stablility” (peace)?


Spotlight Story

Risky Witnessing

Iran

Iran is a Muslim country where Christian activities are strictly controlled by the government. Christians meet together in secret house churches. In some of the churches, each member takes seven Bibles when they leave church on Sunday. Then they give one Bible a day to a non-Christian. But sharing the gospel with Muslims is against the law in Iran. So the Christians risk being arrested every time they give someone a Bible.

(Source: Vision Beyond Borders)

To Think About: What do you think would happen if everyone in your church shared the gospel with seven people every week?


Activities Story

India Word Square

Print the puzzle boxes below, or draw a 4 by 4 block of squares like the ones below on a piece of paper. Solve the puzzles so that each word square reveals the same words vertically (up and down) and horizontally (across).
Across and Down

  1. A main food in southern India (rhymes with “nice”).
  2. A statue representing a god honored by Hindus.
  3. Hindus honor ____, animals that give milk.
  4. Salvation is found in no one ____ but Jesus.
1
2
3
4

Word Square Answers

rice, idol, cows, else