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A tree in Kenya

On September 6th, Somali militants from Al-Shabaab, a terrorist group allied with Al-Qaeda, killed four Christians in coastal Kenya. The shaken residents of Bobo village in Lamu County left their homes and slept in the cold of the wilderness or in nearby Hindi after the Al-Shabaab terrorists, accompanied by local Kiswahili-speaking people, called three Christians out of their homes at about three a.m. and slit their throats. These vicious acts of violence took place even though a curfew had been set by the government in its efforts to prevent attacks from occurring in the counties of Lamu, Tana River and Garissa.

Among the local men abducted by the militants was Hillary Njuguna, who apparently had been forced to reveal the names of fellow Christians before reportedly being later killed. Prior to calling out the names of the targeted victims, the assailants first surrounded their homes. Along with other fleeing families, Hillary spent the night hiding among the bushes outside. The confirmed slain victims include Guchu Peter, Jared Maiko and Joseph Kinuthia. During the incident, the militants of Al-Shabaab also burned Guchu's shop.

The slaughter follows an August 18th assault that took place in Lamu County's town of Kasala Kairu where the militants allegedly killed four other Christians. (A report on this situation is available here.) Since Kenyan forces led an African coalition against terrorism in Somalia during October 2011, in response to previous attacks on innocent tourists and others along Kenya's coast, rebels from Al-Shabaab have launched several violent assaults on non-Muslims in northeast and coastal Kenya. Christians, especially those in Lamu County and elsewhere in coastal Kenya, have been regular targets of this violence.

Please prayerfully uphold the loved ones of those who were slain in these recent attacks, asking God to make His comforting presence known among them and to flood their grieving hearts with His overwhelming peace. Pray that the Christians residing in these targeted areas will be granted protection, as well as the strength and courage to stand firm in their faith. May they rest in the assurance that though they pass through troubling waters and the fires of affliction, the Lord is still near to them (Isaiah 43:2) and can be trusted above all things. Also intercede for the members of Al-Shabaab that they will experience the life-changing love of God in their lives as well.