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Bold Believers in Syria

Bold Believers in Syria includes stories, history and culture facts, activities, crafts, and recipes that help children understand the daily lives of their Christian brothers and sisters who face Islamic extremism. The 48-page book is available free from the Downloads section of this site.

Bold Believers in Syria provides age-appropriate companion material for VOM’s I Am N information and resources. (See

Spotlight Story

How Pastor Richard Wurmbrand Got in Trouble

In Pastor Richard Wurmbrand’s country of Romania in the mid-1900s, Christians had many enemies. Iron Guard terrorists scared Christians, and both the police and the Iron Guard worked with the German Nazis, who occupied the country. The policed arrested many Christians. Pastor Wurmbrand was arrested and questioned, just because he was a pastor. Each arrest became a lesson that prepared him for harder times to come.

Pastor Wurmbrand’s Story
I was standing at the pulpit one Sunday when the terrorists appeared. They filed silently into the back of the church and sat down. No one else saw them enter. The congregation waited eagerly for me to begin my sermon. Then I saw the guns in the strangers’ hands. I thought to myself, “If this is going to be my last sermon, it should be a good one.”

My sermon told about the hands of Jesus, who wiped away tears and fed the hungry. His hands blessed children and healed the sick. “But you!” I raised my voice. “What have you done with your hands?”

The congregation stared in amazement. Their hands held Bibles! They didn’t know I was preaching to the terrorists. “You hurt innocent people with your hands!” I thundered. “Clean your hands, you sinners!” The terrorists whispered to one another and scowled. They clutched their guns while I said a closing prayer.

The puzzled church members began to leave. I came down from the pulpit, quickly stepped behind a curtain, slipped through a secret door, and locked it. Footsteps pounded behind me as I raced through hidden hallways, found my way to a side street, and escaped.

Later, after the Nazis lost power, a million Russian communist soldiers marched into Romania. They made the problems during Nazi times seem easy. But I loved the Russians! I had asked God to send me to Russia to be a missionary. But instead, he brought the Russians to me! Their leaders didn’t want them to learn about God, but to me, it was worth the risk to preach to them.

Pastor Wurmbrand was later arrested, and he spent a total of 14 years in Romanian prisons before he and his family left the country. He started The Voice of the Martyrs 50 years ago in 1967. He wanted VOM to help the families of persecuted Christians, because he and his family had been persecuted for standing up for Christ.

Parents & Educators Story

This Month

Parents and Teachers

The October 2017 issue of The Voice of the Martyrs newsletter highlights:

*VOM’s 50 years of ministry
*VOM’s founder, Richard Wurmbrand
*A VOM worker’s 14 months in a Sudanese prison
*Stories about believers who boldly follow Christ in countries where Christianity is restricted
* Information to help you prepare for the November 5th International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church.

Kids of Courage will cover similar topics this month to share with your children.

To subscribe to the free monthly The Voice of the Martyrs newsletter, visit the subscription signup page.

To find downloadable materials for children about Richard Wurmbrand, click here.

Student and leader guides for The Torchlighters: The Story of Richard Wurmbrand DVD are also available in the Downloads section of this site.

Find IDOP resources here. (Please preview the resources to decide which are appropriate for your children.)

Spotlight Story

India: VBS Leaders Arrested for Kidnapping

Children in India reading the Bible

Sixty children in India were singing Christian songs and reading the Bible as they traveled by train to their VBS camp this summer. When they reached their destination, the police arrived and arrested nine adult VBS leaders for kidnapping the children!

Some Hindus in India do not want Christianity to spread in their country. The VBS group had attracted the attention of radical Hindus during their trip. The Hindus called the police and falsely reported that the VBS leaders were kidnapping the children and converting people to Christianity by force.

Three of the leaders were released on bail after 40 days. But the other six remained in jail.

Please pray that the children’s faith will grow and that they will have other opportunities to learn more about Jesus. Ask God to strengthen the VBS leaders. And pray that Hindus will remember the songs and Bible verses they heard from the children and will seek the truth.

Learn more about Hinduism here.

Spotlight Story

“I Like to Go to Prison”

Daniel is an evangelist in a Muslim country. An evangelist is someone who spreads the gospel of Jesus. (The photo shows an evangelist in a country where Christians are persecuted. His face is covered to protect his identity.) But sharing the gospel is risky in Daniel’s country. So he has been in prison several times for his “crime” of leading Muslims to Christ.

Daniel had some surprising things to say about his time in prison.

• Daniel said, “When people tell me, ‘I’m lonely,’ I say, ‘Get yourself thrown in prison for Jesus! People all over the world will pray for you, and God answers prayer!’”

• Daniel said, “Prison is evangelism heaven! I met an atheist in prison, and I told him, ‘God sent me here to talk to you.’ He listened!

“I also met a man who had sinned many times. I told him a story about how Jesus forgives sinners. He said, ‘I like this Jesus!’

“Now do you see why I like going to prison?”

(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.)

To Think About
*Why does Daniel like going to prison?
*Why did Daniel call prison “evangelism heaven?”
*Why do you think some people might be more likely to listen to someone talk about Jesus when they are in prison than when they are out of prison?

Activities Story

Bookmarks for Prisoners

Stephen, a VOM newsletter reader, designed bookmarks for prisoners who are featured on The Voice of the Martyrs Prisoner Alert website. Follow the instructions below if you want to make similar bookmarks.

1. Click on a country at, then on the name of a prisoner, then on “Write a Letter.” Print a copy of a verse in the prisoner’s language shown under “Available Phrases.”

2. Click “Add Phrase” (even if you are going to mail a bookmark to a prisoner instead of printing a letter), then “Continue” to find the prisoner’s address.

3. Glue the verse on art paper then laminate the bookmark and add small tassels or other decorations.

4. Use the address to mail the bookmark, and if you wish, a message or letter. Find suggestions for writing letters here.

5. Take your message and bookmark in an addressed envelope to a post office to see how much postage to include.

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