(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)
Pastor Michael Abraha
At least twenty Christians, including several young children, were arrested and detained when security forces raided a home in the town of Dekemhare, 40 km south of the Eritrean capital of Asmara, on May 27. According to a June 6 report from Release Eritrea, the authorities went to the home expecting to apprehend a group of Christians gathered for prayer. When they did not find such a meeting taking place, they arrested the families living in the home and several other Christians in the neighbourhood, including a well-known Bible teacher and church leader, Pastor Michael Abraha of the Kale-Hiwot Baptist Church. They also confiscated videos of a wedding conducted by Pastor Abraha. There is considerable concern for the Pastor's health as he suffers from diabetes.

Pray for the Lord's grace to abound in Pastor Michael while he suffers for the Name of Christ. Pray also that he will receive appropriate medication for his diabetes. Pray that the members of Pastor Michael's congregation will not give in to fear and despair but be enabled by God to stand firm in their faith. Ask the Lord to continue to bring forth more Christian church leaders in Eritrea to take the place of those who are imprisoned (Luke 21:13-15).

For more information on the persecution of Christians in Eritrea, click here.

Country Information


6,147,398 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Tigrinya (50), Tigre (30), Saho (4), Afar (4) Kunama (4), Bilen (3), other (5)

Religion (%)
Islam (47.4), Christianity (48.8), other (3.8)

President Isaias Afworki (1993)

Government type
Presidential republic

Legal system
Mixed legal system of civil, customary, and Islamic religious law

Sources: CIA World Factbook, Operation World

Pray for Eritrea

Ask the Lord to provide imprisoned Eritrean believers a means of escape and a place of safe refuge. Pray for Him to also work deeply in the hearts of the country's governing officials so they will grant His people the freedom to worship Him and glorify His matchless name. Mindful of their own human frailties, may these political leaders realize the need to make Jesus their own personal Saviour and Lord by accepting His gift of eternal salvation.


Select a Region

Eritrea News

  • More Church Leaders Detained
    Church building
    A church in Eritrea

    In 2002, the government of Eritrea outlawed every religion except for Sunni Islam, Eritrean Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism and Lutheranism. Since then, the oppression against other religious groups has been severe. Even those within the approved faith groups have been at risk of op

  • Twenty Years of Oppression
    Eritrean Bible
    Photo: VOMC

    In May 2002, the Eritrean government closed all unregistered churches and established legislation outlawing any religious community except for Sunni Islam, Eritrean Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism and Lutheranism. Government oppression and control was strongly instituted, even within these

  • Christians Arrested During Prayer Meeting
    Several rusty shipping containers - Photo: VOMC
    Prison officials continue to hold detainees in cramped, unsanitary shipping containers.
    Photo: VOMC

    In mid-March, 29 evangelical Christians were arrested when Eritrean security forces raided a home prayer meeting in Asmara. According to reports, 17 women and 12 men were taken to the Mai Serwa prison