Bold Believers in North Korea includes stories, history and culture facts, activities, and recipes that help children understand the daily lives of people in a country where citizens are forbidden to practice Christianity. The 54-page book is available free from the Downloads section of this site.
Readers Talk to Us Story
Published on May 21st, 2019
Michelle Curtis wrote the following story about a group of Texas kids who provided 300 Bibles for Christians in China. Michelle is an editorial assistant for the organization that produces the Torchlighters DVDs in cooperation with The Voice of the Martyrs. The DVDs feature stories of Christian heroes.
Today Michelle assists with various stages of bringing the stories of Christian heroes to the next generation. But years ago, Michelle was the child who first inspired the Torchlighters DVDs. You can read how that happened at Torchlighters.org. Now some children in Texas are inspiring those around them to put the lessons learned from Torchlighters into action.
The Texas Torchlighters
When the 2nd-5th graders of Life Foursquare Church (Angleton, TX) watched Torchlighter William Tyndale’s story, they were inspired to send Bibles to persecuted Christians in China. These eager youngsters wanted to follow Tyndale’s example and share God’s Word with people who otherwise could not read it. In just four weeks, together with their leaders, they collected enough money to send 300 Bibles to believers in China with the help of The Voice of the Martyrs (a co-producer of the Torchlighters).
Each child had a cardboard “gospel box” to collect money. Leaders encouraged the children to think about ways they could sacrifice in their own lives to send Bibles to Christian believers in China. Some gave their allowance. Some stopped buying things they wanted in order to give the money. One even gave the money that was supposed to go toward repainting a room and instead lived with the old paint. The kids also enthusiastically shared the need for Bibles and encouraged many others to contribute—family, neighbors, and even strangers!
In 1536, William Tyndale gave his life for “heresy,” having drawn attention to himself by illegally translating the Bible into English so that the common people could read it for themselves. Now a group of believers in Texas have made personal sacrifices to provide Bibles for Chinese Christians. Torchlighters is inspiring young torchlighters to grow even more torchlighters! We pray that the torch Tyndale lit by translating the Bible into English will continue to light many hearts of fire for God’s Word.
[Learn about VOM’s commitment to provide a Bible for every believer here.]
Published on May 20th, 2019
Katherine P., a homeschool mom, blogger, and co-op teacher in Virginia, recently sent this comment to Kids of Courage about the books in the Courageous Series.
“I teach a class of 5-7 year olds every week, and every time I’ve brought out these books, I’ve asked, ‘Are they going to be able to handle this?’ And every time, they have such a beautiful response to these stories. So… I will continue to spread the word and teach them.”
Katherine has developed lesson plans based on some of the books in the series. “Friends, I want my kiddos to learn to do hard things,” Katherine wrote in her plan. “As a Christian, I pray for a revival of the gospel in our land, I truly do. But at the moment, it looks like Christians and all that we believe are increasingly being made fun of, mocked, and rejected. This is the world our children are growing up in. They’re going to face the darkness soon enough, why not show it to them early, and let them hear of these heroes of the faith who faced the darkness head on with Christ, and triumphed victoriously. And I will tell you – they can handle it. They really can.”
To Talk About
Part of Katherine’s lesson plan about The Story of St. Patrick included the following comments and questions to share with kids.
*Patrick grew up in a Christian family that loved Jesus. But even though Patrick’s parents loved Jesus, Patrick hadn’t discovered Jesus for himself yet. Your parents take care of you and tell you about Jesus, but one day, you are going to have to decide for yourself, “Am I going to follow Jesus even when mom and dad aren’t around?
*Well, Patrick basically ignored God and didn’t think much about Him. Until something really bad happened. His choice: Just because you have a Christian family, doesn’t make you a Christian. At some point YOU must choose on your own to become a Christian. This is what Patrick did when he was alone on the island.
Share Your Ideas
Click on “Contact Us” at the bottom of this page to send your ideas about sharing The Voice of the Martyrs/Kids of Courage resources with children.
Published on May 17th, 2019
Parents and Teachers
The Kids of Courage VBS connects your students to other young Christians around the world. The curriculum introduces students to real Kids of Courage at risk for their faith today in five countries: China, Egypt, Nigeria, North Korea, and India. Students learn how bold believers around the world live, worship, and play.
The lessons teach children how to pray for those who risk everything for their faith, and how to become Kids of Courage themselves. They learn that Kids of Courage: Trust God, Get Prepared, Remember Persecuted Christians, Forgive Others, and Witness Boldly.
For more information and feedback from VBS directors, visit kidsofcouragevbs.com. The curriculum is also appropriate for Sunday schools, homeschool co-ops, and other kids’ groups.
Published on May 16th, 2019
Thirteen-year-old Sadaf lives in Pakistan. Her Christian family recently made a video about her. But the video does not tell about a happy family celebration or vacation. It is a plea for help.
A few months ago, three Muslim men kidnapped Sadaf. Her family was able to contact the kidnappers and tell them they wanted their daughter back. The kidnappers said they would return Sadaf to them.
But eight days later, instead of giving Sadaf back to her family, the men gave them a marriage certificate. The certificate falsely said that Sadaf was 18 years old. It said she had converted to Islam, the religion of Muslims, and that she had married a Muslim man.
Christians say that hundreds of girls in Pakistan are kidnapped every year and forced to change their religion and marry Muslims. Sadaf’s family has requested help from the police, and they made a video about her situation in an effort to pressure the authorities to act. But so far the police have ignored their requests.
Read below three prayer requests for Sadaf and her family.
*Ask the Lord to directly intervene to ensure the release of Sadaf and other captives, either through His miraculous hand or through the work of the local authorities. Pray that Sadaf’s case will be taken seriously and that she and her family will be looked upon with compassion.
*Ask the Lord to comfort, protect, and strengthen Sadaf and her family during this very difficult time.
*Pray that the Lord will bring change to the hearts of the captors to bring true repentance.
(Source: VOM Australia)
Read more about Christians in Pakistan in the book Bold Believers in Pakistan, available in the Downloads section.
Published on May 15th, 2019
When Ruchika was in the 12th grade, her parents began to search for someone to marry her. Like many parents in India, they planned to choose their daughter’s husband. They were looking for a man who worked hard, had a good job, and made lots of money. However, Ruchika told them, “I will not get married unless I marry a pastor.” She wanted to help a pastor in his work for the Lord.
Ruchika’s parents were Christians, but they did not agree with her plan. After many arguments and counseling from Christian aunts and uncles, her parents gave in to her wishes.
When Aditya was a boy in India, he grew very ill. “He will not live,” the doctors told Aditya’s parents. An evangelist visited Aditya’s house, talked to his family about Christ, and prayed for Aditya. “If he lives, let him live for Christ,” said Aditya’s mother.
Aditya recovered from his illness! He gave his life to Christ and became a pastor. In the area where he lived, pastors were often threatened and attacked, so he knew the risks of sharing the good news of Jesus. Soon he, too, was attacked and warned not to continue his preaching.
Aditya knew about Ruchika’s desire to help share the love of Jesus with those who don’t know Him. So he asked her to marry him.
[Talk to three couples who have been married a long time. Ask them what they talked about during their marriage proposal. Was their conversation anything like Aditya’s proposal below?]
“This is my life,” Aditya began his proposal to Ruchika. “I am a minister and have been attacked so many times. In the future, you may be attacked. I might go to jail. Sometimes we will have food, sometimes we will not. This will be the life. If you would like to marry me, you can. Otherwise, say no.”
Ruchika answered, “Live or die, I will live for Christ.”
Serving the Lord Together
Aditya was not exaggerating in his proposal. The couple has endured hardship, attacks, arrests, and threats. They now have a baby who may also endure hardship someday.
“The problems, trials, tribulations, and whatever comes is nothing with God,” Aditya told a VOM worker. “God has made a new heaven house for us, so we have to wait and strive for that. That is what we are waiting for.”
(To protect their identities, the names of some of the people on this website and some identifying details have been changed. Some of the quotes and stories have been edited and paraphrased from the original sources for clarity, length, and age appropriateness. In the photo above, Aditya and Ruchika’s faces are covered to protect their identity from those who might want to harm them.)