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Bold Believers in North Korea

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.

Countries Story

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka

HOSTILE

Capital
Colombo

Size
Slightly larger than West Virginia.

Main Languages
Sinhala, Tamil

Time
At 6:00 a.m. U.S. Central Standard Time, it is 4:30 p.m. in Sri Lanka.

History
Sri Lanka used to be called Ceylon. Britain ruled Ceylon until the country became independent in 1948. A 1956 law declared Sinhala to be the official language. Many Tamil-speaking people were angry. The law was later changed, and now Tamil is also an official language. But bad feelings between the Sinhala and Tamil people led to decades of war .
Religion
Mostly Buddhist, many Hindu, some Christian and Muslim.

Persecution
About 80% of the people are Sinhalese. Most of them are Buddhists. The government supports the majority Buddhists and does not provide adequate protection for Christians. Dozens of attacks on churches and against Christians are reported.


Countries Story

Sudan and South Sudan

Sudan and South Sudan

Sudan

RESTRICTED

Sudan Capital
Khartoum

Main Languages
Arabic

Time
At 6:00 a.m. U.S. Central Standard Time, it is 2:00 p.m. in Sudan.

South Sudan

South Sudan Capital
Juba

Main Languages
English

Time
At 6:00 a.m. U.S. Central Standard Time, it is 2:00 p.m. in South Sudan.

Interesting Fact
The new flag of South Sudan is one of only two country flags that has six colors as part of its main design. (The other is South Africa’s.)

 

History
Sudan became an independent country in 1956. It was the largest country in Africa. The North and the South often did not get along. Muslims who ruled the North often controlled and fought against Christians and others in the South. Many people around the world worked and prayed for peace in Sudan, and there were improvements in the early years of the 21st century. But more fighting started in the western region of Darfur, bringing much sadness and many problems to that area. South Sudan became an independent country on July 9, 2011.

Religion
The majority of the people in Sudan are Muslims. The majority of the people in South Sudan are Christians or animists.

Persecution

In Sudan, it is against the law for Muslims to become Christians. Muslim women cannot marry non-Muslim men. Pastors and Christian workers have been arrested, and churches have been demolished. In the Nuba Mountains, the government bombs Christians and non-Arabs.


Countries Story

Syria

Syria

Syria

RESTRICTED

Capital
Damascus

Size
Slightly larger than North Dakota.

Main Languages
Arabic

Time
At 6:00 a.m. U.S. Central Standard Time, it is 2:00 p.m. in Syria.

History
The capital city of Syria is the biblical city of Damascus. Syria became independent from France in 1946. In 2011, some Syrians held public protests against the leaders of the country.Government soldiers fought to stop the protests. More people joined in the fighting, some for the government and some for the protestors. The fight turned into a war.

Religion
Mostly Muslim.

Persecution
It is against the law for a Muslim to become a Christian.Christians are targets of the radical Muslims. Christian villages have been overrun, churches destroyed, and believers abused or driven out.


Countries Story

Tajikistan

Tajikistan

Tajikistan

RESTRICTED

Capital
Dushanbe

Size
Slightly smaller than Wisconsin.

Main Languages
Tajik, Russian

Time
At 6:00 a.m. U.S. Central Standard Time, it is 4:00 p.m. in Tajikistan.

History
The U.S.S.R. (often called “The Soviet Union”) was the largest communist country in the world. In the early 1990s, it broke up into many smaller countries. Tajikistan was one of those countries. After independence, different groups fought a civil war to try to get control of the country. Droughts, natural disasters, and war have made the people very poor.

 

Religion
Mostly Muslim.

Persecution
Although most people in Tajikistan are Muslims, the government is afraid of Muslim terrorists. So officials try to control all religions to make sure no violent groups gain power. It is against the law for children under 18 to participate in worship services at public places of worship. The government sometimes takes Christians to police stations to question them and find out more about their Christian activities. Muslims who become Christians are sometimes treated badly by officials and their families.


Countries Story

Tibet

Tibet

Tibet

RESTRICTED

Capital
Lhasa

Main Languages
Tibetan

Time
At 6:00 a.m. U.S. Central Standard Time, it is 7:00 p.m. in Tibet.

History
Communist China took over Tibet in 1950. The communist government wanted people to look to the government for answers, not religion. Most Tibetans are Buddhists. When China took control, the leader of the Buddhists, the Dalai Lama, fled the country with thousands of his followers.

Religion
Mostly Buddhist.

Persecution
Translators have translated the Bible into the Tibetan language, but many Tibetans cannot read it because they do not know how to read. The Chinese government tries to control the practice of Buddhism and Christianity in China. Tibetan Christians worship in secret. Most of the persecution of Christians comes from Buddhists who want to increase the strength of Buddhism.


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