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Letters Encourage Chinese Prisoner

Shi Weihan
Pastor Shi and his family looking at their letters after his release

Pastor Shi Weihan lived in China with his wife and two daughters. Very early one morning, their dog’s loud barking woke them up. Pastor Shi wondered why the dog was making so much noise. Usually he barked only when a group of people came to their house.

Pastor Shi looked out the window. He saw 30 police officers and 20 vehicles.

The pastor knew why the police had come for him. He and other Chinese house-church Christians had been printing Bibles to give away free. China’s Amity Press is the only press allowed to print Bibles legally.

The police took Pastor Shi to jail. They put him in a cell that was about 60 square feet in size. (A 10-foot by 6-foot room would be 60 feet square.) More than 30 other prisoners were already stuffed into the small space.

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Teacher Becomes a “Bold Believer”

Shelter
The Bold Believers’ class Colombia “shelter”

The Voice of the Martyrs received the following email:

“Hi. I’m trying to find some recipes for Colombian desserts to use in a drama. If you have some, or know where I could get some, that would help. Thank you. Anne M.”

Note: Most of the Bold Believers activity books in the Downloads section of this site include recipes from the featured countries. Read an edited excerpt below from another recent email to find out how a teacher in Michigan used the recipes, activities, and information in the Bold Believers books — and what she learned.

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Singing in the Cold

Icicle

Pastor Richard Wurmbrand, the founder of The Voice of the Martyrs, told the following story about a man who was imprisoned for his faith in a country where Christians were persecuted:

“I met a Christian who had been in jail for 22 years. He was alone in a cell for 18 of those years. No books, no Bible, no anything. Just sitting in his cell. No letters from his family were allowed, no one ever coming to see him.

“For seven hours a day, they gave him a mattress to sleep on. Then they took the mattress out. For the other 17 hours of the day, he was not allowed to sleep even a little bit. He was not allowed to lie down on the cold concrete floor, to sit down, or to stand still. For 17 hours a day, he had to walk around the cell. The guards watched him through a peephole in the door. If he stopped walking, they entered the cell and pushed him so he would start walking again.

“After 18 years, they sent the man to work in north Siberia where the ice never melts. I asked the man, ‘After 18 years of suffering in your cell, then in the cold, how could you stand it?’

“The man did not reply in words. Instead, he sang a song that said, ‘The flames of the fire of love which Jesus kindled in my heart made the ice of Siberia melt. Hallelujah!’

“Later I was a welcomed guest in the home of a rich Christian in America. He told me, ‘I had such a bad day today. I lost a million and a half dollars in business deals.’

“’How much money do you have left?’” I asked.

“’I don’t know exactly,’ he answered. ‘Ten or 11 million.’ He was very unhappy.

“We get so attached to money and things, thinking that they are so important.

“But I had met the man who had spent 18 years in a cell and four more where the ice never melts, and he was not unhappy. He sang.

“All men stand before a narrow gate. One day we will have to pass through this gate. But on the other side is paradise. So let us prepare ourselves for it, beginning a life of joy and love now. May we live life with a shining face, a smile, and a song, as people who have an eternity of paradise before us.”

(Edited for clarity and reading level)

Note: Reports say that in some parts of Siberia, it is so cold that the moisture in people’s breath freezes solid and falls to the ground.

What did Pastor Wurmbrand mean when he said, “All men stand before a narrow gate”?


Seeing the Hand of the Lord in Morocco

Morocco
Satellite dishes bring Christian programs to Moroccan homes

Hassan grew up in a family of three boys and four girls in Morocco. When he was 3 years old, his father began taking him to the mosque to learn to memorize the Quran. (A mosque is a building where Muslims worship, and the Quran is the Muslims’ holy book.)

One day when he was a teenager, Hassan discovered a Christian program on the radio. He continued to listen to the program for six months. “I decided to act as a good Muslim,” Hassan said. He wrote the radio station a letter telling the Christians that their ideas were wrong. “I included some verses from the Quran and also a lot of insults,” Hassan said. He didn’t expect to receive a reply to his letter.

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Brave Christian Saves Children from Bomb

Nigeria
Awuna’s hand was injured by the bomb

Awuna was working as a volunteer at a hospital in Nigeria when he heard gunshots outside. Christians are often attacked in Nigeria, so Awuna decided to go home where he would be safer.

As he rode his motorbike toward his house, he remembered that it was Friday. The children at his church would be practicing for a Sunday school program. Instead of going home, Awuna went to the church.

When he got to the church, the children were crying. Awuna saw a can in the church with a wire hanging out of the opening. Awuna had never seen a bomb, but he thought the can might be dangerous to the children. He picked it up to throw it out the window. Awuna didn’t stop to think that it might hurt him. The bomb exploded in his hand.

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