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Housing persecuted Christians

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Housing persecuted Christians

Project(s): 00-977

Country/Region: Pakistan, Sri Lanka, India

Play videoPersecuted but not forsaken - video
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Thousands of Christians in three South Asian countries have lost their homes. Living in squalid conditions, without proper homes or places to worship, they are vulnerable, despised and cannot help themselves.

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Homeless Christians in Pakistan

“I have a dream in which I tell my friends, ‘This is my home that protects my family; it may be small but it is filled with God’s love and grace.’”

A pastor’s plea - Sri Lanka

“We lost all our belongings, and we also suffered many illnesses without any proper medical attention. We were living in a refugee camp till 2011. We have now moved back to our village with hope and vision to rebuild the ministry and make an impact for God. Land belonging to the church, which had a building, was destroyed in the war. As the church we will be grateful if this church could be rebuilt to serve the communities.”

Rosalina, a Christian girl from Orissa, India

“In July 2009, we had to return back to our village. We put up small tents with tarpaulin to stay in most unhygienic and unsafe condition… Only by the grace of God we are living and I praise and thank God.”

Click on the countries on the left for more information

India

At Christmas 2007, Hindu extremists entered the homes of their Christian neighbours telling them that they had to convert to Hinduism or leave. Many Christians were wounded or killed, unless they managed to escape into the jungle. Their houses and churches were burned down or rendered uninhabitable by the extremists. In August 2008 brutal attacks started again, continuing unabated for two months. At least 400 villages were “cleansed” of all Christians. Over 56,000 Christians were left homeless.

Pakistan

Following a housing dispute in which authorities reneged on their promise of providing land, more than 2,000 poor and vulnerable Christians became homeless in June 2009. They ended up living in tents along the centre of a highway with up to 20 people per tent. The only water supply ran beside an open pit latrine and waste dump. Two people died from the heat that first summer. In 2010 the government moved the families to a camp outside the city, but their tents were badly damaged by the devastating floods later that year.

Sri Lanka

The ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka that lasted more than 30 years has left the north and east districts of the country in a war-ravaged state: devastated land and vegetation, houses in ruins, and up to half a million people displaced and living in temporary camps. Since the war ended in May 2009 reconstruction work has begun, but many Christians are still without permanent homes. They meet together to worship in tents and sometimes under trees.

Can you or your church help provide a home?

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With your support, Barnabas Fund can enable local Christian groups to provide proper houses and churches for these homeless Christians in South Asia.

Since Barnabas Fund began in 1993 we have built hundreds of homes and scores of churches, transforming the lives of needy Christians under pressure. Help us to keep helping!

Any gift, no matter how small, will help!

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sevenhundred.jpg for simple, one-room house in Orissa, India (pictured). The overhanging roof creates a veranda for cooking.

twothoufivehunpounds.jpg builds a four-room house in Pakistan with a kitchen and bathroom with toilet/shower and electricity.

threethoufivehunpounds.jpg average cost for a basic house in Sri Lanka. Including indoor kitchen, toilet and water supply.

sixthoupounds.jpg typical cost of a new church building in Sri Lanka, becoming beacons of hope in these broken communities.

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    • Heavenly Father, we pray for Kim Jung-Wook, a South Korean Christian who has been sentenced to hard labour for life in North Korea for “spying” and attempting to establish house churches in the country. We thank You that although prosecutors demanded the death penalty, this was commuted, but we pray that Jung-Wook will be sustained by You in his imprisonment and cruel treatment and will soon be released. We pray too for the dozens of North Koreans who were detained after Jung-Wook’s arrest in October on suspicion of helping him, and for the families of any who have already been executed. We pray for political change and religious freedom in North Korea, that it may be made legal to be a Christian and to take part in Christian activity. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed 5 hours ago

    • Two Christian families in Uzbekistan who meet in a private home to read the Bible and pray together have been repeatedly fined and had property confiscated. Alisher Abdullayev and Veniamin Nemirov were originally fined in 2012 for unregistered religious activity and teaching religion “illegally”. They refused on principle to pay, claiming that they had not violated any laws. But earlier this year bailiffs went to their homes and confiscated a car, a mobile phone and household items. The men and their wives were then fined again, ten times the minimum monthly wage. Officers have also raided one of their meetings, filming and harassing those present and seizing religious literature. Pray that the authorities will stop targeting the families and that they will be left alone to study and pray in peace. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Tue, Sep 2014 00:00

    • Leaders imprisoned for up to 60 days and members for up to 45 days; fines, corrective labour or community service: these are the penalties for taking part in religious gatherings in Kazakhstan held without state permission, according to a new criminal code. Those who finance unregistered religious activity will be liable to the same punishments as leaders. In addition, a new Code of Administrative Offences lays down a wide range of penalties for exercising the right to religious freedom. Both codes have been condemned by 119 Kazakh and international human rights groups and individuals. They further tighten controls on religious practice in a context where it is already much restricted. Pray for wisdom and courage for Christians in Kazakhstan as they seek to maintain their worship and witness. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Mon, Sep 2014 00:00

    • Give thanks that 55 Christians, almost all church leaders and converts from Islam, received Bible training at a three-day seminar in Kyrgyzstan that was supported by Barnabas Fund. The participants have virtually no access to Biblical training, and so the studies were a great boost to their faith and ministry. Meeting fellow church leaders, who are all dealing with similar issues, such as isolation and persecution from Muslim relatives and local Muslim communities, was also very encouraging to them and gave them the opportunity to build up a Christian support network. Pray that the Lord will continue to speak to them through the Bible passages they studied at the seminar, and that He will bless their ministries. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sun, Sep 2014 00:00

    • Christians and other minorities in Burma (Myanmar) are extremely concerned about a proposed religious conversion bill that will require people to seek permission from the authorities before changing religion. It is part of a package of four bills designed to “protect race and religion” in the Buddhist-majority country. The government says it is intended to prevent forced conversions. The draft says that forcing someone to convert would be punishable by a year in prison, while insulting another religion would be punishable by between one and two years in prison. Similar laws in force in several Indian states are used to threaten legitimate evangelism by Christians and as a pretext by Hindu militants to attack Christians, whom they falsely accuse of forcibly converting people. Pray this bill will not become law in Burma. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sat, Sep 2014 00:00

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