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Learn About Sri Lanka

Sri LankaSri Lankan schoolchildren

Schoolchildren in Sri Lanka
A Christian worker in Sri Lanka said, “A Christian child has a time of devotion at home, then goes to school. Buddhist and Hindu children worship statues depicting their gods, and they offer white flowers to the statues as an offering. In school the Buddhist child is encouraged to bring flowers and oil for a lamp placed before a Buddha statue. [Buddha was the founder of Buddhism]

“It is also common to see non-Christian children wearing a white or colored thread around their wrist. They believe this keeps away evil and sickness, and that it helps them in their studies. Hindu girls wear a ‘pottu’ (dot) on their forehead to ‘keep away evil.’”

Christians in Sri Lanka
In recent years, there has been more persecution of Christians in Sri Lanka. More than 250 churches have been destroyed in violence.

Game and Recipe to Share
Share the following game or recipe from Sri Lanka with a Sunday school class or other group. Then tell them about Christians in Sri Lanka and ask them to pray.

Kotta Pora
Kotta pora is a traditional game played during spring celebrations in Sri Lanka. To play one version of kotta pora, players mark off a space about five feet and five feet. (Kotta pora is often played by two players sitting on a horizontal bar suspended above the ground, and sometimes on a low platform.) Two players face each other with a pillow in one hand. Their other hand is held behind their back, and they stand on only one foot. The players bat at each other with the pillows until one player puts his raised foot down or hops out of the marked-off space. The other player is the winner.

Gingered Bananas
Combine ¼ cup sugar, ¼ cup water, and 1 tablespoon lemon juice in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer for about five minutes until thickened, stirring frequently. Sprinkle ground ginger over three bananas peeled and cut in half lengthwise. Pour hot mixture over bananas. Chill and serve.


IDOP Prayer Reminders

Note: The International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church (IDOP) will be observed on November 1st and throughout the month of November this year.

To make clothespin magnets that remind you to pray for persecuted Christians all year long, glue decorations on one side of a clothespin. (Or decorate it with colorful, patterned duct tape.) Attach a piece of peel-and-stick magnetic tape on the other side.

Create decorative labels that include the name of a country where Christians are persecuted. (Or cut out small photos of persecuted Christians from The Voice of the Martyrs newsletters or printed from this site.)

Fasten the labels or photos with the clothespins, and display the clothespins on a refrigerator or another magnetic surface. Change or add to the items as you learn of additional prayer needs. Pray for one of the countries or Christians  on the clothespins during mealtime prayers or at other times when you notice the prayer reminders.

Enter “IDOP” in the Search box to find more IDOP activities, or check the IDOP lesson plans in the Downloads section.

IDOP Will Be on November 1st

The International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church (IDOP) will be observed on November 1st this year. You can make plans now to join other Christians across the country in praying for persecuted Christians.

How can you prepare?

*Let your parents, teacher, or children’s/youth pastor know about IDOP, and ask if you can help them prepare to observe it with your class or group.

*Make a list of five to 10 countries where Christians are persecuted. Enter the name of each country in the Search box on this site to find information about some of the struggles faced by Christians in those countries. Or, make a list of persecuted Christians from stories on this site or on List two or three prayer points for each country or Christian.

*Plan to start praying about the prayer points on November 1st and to continue praying after IDOP. Read below about a way that one family prays for persecuted Christians.

Tamara S. commented on VOM’s Facebook page about how her family prays for persecuted Christians at mealtime: “We have Popsicle sticks in a vase with the names of hostile and restricted nations on them, and some of them have names of imprisoned [Christians] on them,” she said. “We try to draw one every meal at which we sit down together.”

*Tell an adult about IDOP resources for adults available here. Teachers and parents can also find lesson plans for children and youth in the Downloads section of this site.

Who Came First?


Torchlighters DVDs tell stories of Christian heroes from the past. They are available here, or on Redeem TV for free viewing.

The 16-episode set here includes stories of these heroes:

Jim Elliot
William Tyndale
John Bunyan
Eric Liddell
Gladys Aylward
Richard Wurmbrand
Amy Carmichael
William Booth
Samuel Morris
Corrie ten Boom
John Wesley
Robert Jermain Thomas
Martin Luther
Adoniram and Ann Judson

Do you know when these heroes lived?
See if you can answer the following questions.

*Who was born first, William Tyndale or William Booth?
*Who came first, John Bunyan or John Wesley?
*Who was born first, Eric Liddell or Richard Wurmbrand?
*Who came first, Amy Carmichael or Gladys Aylward?
*Which two heroes were both born in 1902? (Hint: Both were named in the previous four questions.)

You can check your answers on the timeline at

Make a Nepali Topi

Schoolboys in topis

A topi is a hat worn by men and boys in Nepal. Follow the instructions below to make your own topi. Find these instructions and more in the activity book Bold Believers in Nepal, available for free in the Downloads section of this site.

Supplies needed: Two 8½- by 11-inch pieces of construction paper, scissors, stapler, pencil, markers, crayons.

Topi 1 Fold an 8½- by 11-inch piece of construction paper in half lengthwise. Cut the paper in two along the fold line.
Topi 2 Staple the halves together, overlapping the ends about 1 inch to make one long strip. Join the ends of the strip together and staple them, forming a circle.
Topi 3 Flatten the circle and crease it shut near both stapled ends, being careful not to hurt your fingers on the staples. To decorate your topi, use crayons or markers to draw designs or pictures on the flattened circle.
Topi 4 Open the flattened circle into the shape of an ellipse. It will be the bottom part of your topi. Stand the ellipse upright on an 8½- by 11-inch piece of construction paper.
Topi 5 Draw around the ellipse with a pencil, making a new ellipse that extends about 1 inch beyond the sides (but not the ends) of the old ellipse.
Topi 6 Cut out the ellipse you have drawn. It will be the top of the topi.
Topi 7 Using two staples on each side, attach the top to the bottom of the topi about ½ inch below the top edge.