Thursday, February 27, 2014

Christian Churches in Algeria Thriving under Persecution

I read an amazing article yesterday in Ethics Daily that highlighted the growth of Christian churches in the North African country of Algeria in spite of the ongoing persecution taking place there.  Let me encourage you to click on the link and read the article if you haven't already seen it.

Several statements by Terry Smith, the author who serves as deputy executive director of Canadian Baptist Ministries, jumped out at me:

  1. The existence of perhaps a mere 200 believers at the end of the country's civil war that raged from 1991-1999.
  2.  The spectacular growth to approximately 100,000 Christians today.
  3. The testimony of an Islamic imam who while traveling to Mecca during Hajj asked a local Christian pastor to care for his wife and family in case anything should happen to him, commenting, "I can trust the Christians to care for my family."
  4. The description of attending a service in a Christian church where more than 650 had gathered and every seat was filled some 45 minutes before worship began.
The money quote though from the article was this one, attributed to one of the local Algerian Christian leaders: "We pray that the persecution won't end because we fear that when it ends, so too will end the revival."

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