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Egypt: A Child's Prayer for his Mot...

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Egypt: A Child's Prayer for his Mother

Country/Region: EGYPT

“Oh Daddy Jesus, bring Mum back and heal her. Bring Dad and heal him ... Daddy Jesus, may you forgive the bad guys who are striking Mum and Dad ... make them your children so that they will not strike Mum and Dad again.”

egypt_art_161009
Carlos and Emmanuel Samuel, who witnessed their mother Martha being stripped and beaten in an attempt to force her to convert back to Islam

These are the words of Emmanuel Samuel, aged 4, when asked if he would like to pray for his mother, Martha Samuel. Emmanuel and his younger brother Carlos (aged 2) witnessed their mother, an Egyptian Christian from a Muslim background, being stripped and kicked at Cairo airport in December 2008 as the family were leaving Egypt to settle in Russia in the hopes of escaping the persecution they were enduring from the police and Martha’s Muslim relatives. During their detention at the airport, the children were reportedly deprived of food to increase the pressure on their mother to return to Islam.

Emmanuel says that Martha had always taught them, “When somebody struck us or insult us to tell him, may baba [daddy] Jesus forgives you.” Emmanuel’s prayer to the persecutors continues: “Daddy Jesus set them free so we can go to the church [it was close to Christmas], do the manger … and attend the feast and take our gifts ... and to see Santa and the baby in the manger. Daddy Jesus make Carlos sleep well and drink his milk today. Daddy Jesus heal my cough my cold and heal Carlos also … Amen”. Following her detention at the airport, Martha was arrested, charged and imprisoned for a month. She was released on bail but not before the judge hearing her case told her if he had a knife he would kill her for leaving Islam.

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christian, persecution, charity, church, persecuted, sookhdeo, Islam

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    • The case of an Egyptian Christian man arrested following complaints by Muslim neighbours that he had been using his home as a church without a permit highlights the need of the Christian community for more places of worship. The 55-year-old man from Minya in Upper Egypt, where Christians are particularly vulnerable to persecution, was arrested once before, in 2011, for the same offence. Every church building in Egypt requires a permit, but these are notoriously difficult to obtain. Pray that the authorities will show leniency to the Christian man and that a provision in the new constitution addressing the issue of church buildings will be enacted. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Tue, Sep 2014 00:00

    • Kidnapping for ransom has been a persistent problem for the Christian community in Egypt amid the political upheaval and instability following the “Arab Spring” revolution of 2011. On 14 June, Wadie Ramses, a well-known surgeon, was seized in El-Arish. The assailants opened fire on his vehicle and took him away wounded. They later demanded a ransom of ten million Egyptian Pounds (£800,000; US$1.4 million) for his release. Two days later, Christian merchant Gemal Shenouda was captured near his home in the same city. It is thought that Islamic militants with links to al-Qaeda, who have been behind escalating violence in the Sinai region, are responsible for the kidnappings. Pray for the safe return of our two Christian brothers and that they and their families will know the Lord’s peace. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Mon, Sep 2014 00:00

    • On 18 June, Bishoy Armia Boulous (31) was sentenced to five years in prison and given a fi ne of 500 Egyptian Pounds (US£70; £40) for “disturbing the peace by broadcasting false information” in connection with reports he produced relating to anti-Christian violence in Minya for a Christian TV channel. His lawyer believes that Bishoy has been targeted because of his conversion from Islam. The Christian gained notoriety in Egypt in 2007 as the first person to try to change his religion on his ID card, a case that is still unresolved owing to the political tumult in the country over the last three years. Pray that the Lord will be Bishoy’s strength and shield (Psalm 28:7), and that he will soon be released. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sun, Sep 2014 00:00

    • Saudi Arabia remains unique in the extent to which it restricts the public expression of any religion other than Islam.” In its annual report for 2014, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom highlighted the extraordinary restrictions faced by Christians and other non-Muslims in one of the most rigid and hardline Islamic states in the world. No churches exist in Saudi Arabia because of an Islamic tradition that Muhammad said there should be only one religion in the Arabian peninsula. Pray for peace and perseverance for the small number of Saudi converts and the many expatriate Christians practising their faith in this repressive context, and ask that the authorities will yield to international pressure to introduce greater religious freedom. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sat, Sep 2014 00:00

    • On 23 June, Vahid Hakkani, a Christian convert in prison in Iran, resumed a hunger strike in protest against the refusal of a court to grant him and two other Christians conditional release. Vahid had broken his previous strike in May after another of his fellow-detainees was set free. The prison authorities have reportedly confiscated his personal belongings from his cell and are denying him the right to make phone calls; they have also separated the Christian prisoners from one another. Even before his first hunger strike, Vahid had been suffering from a digestive problem and internal bleeding. Pray that his health may not fail altogether and that his action will secure justice and freedom for him and his friends (Psalm 69:33). Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Fri, Sep 2014 00:00

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