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Methodist church building in Dehiwela
Photo from The Sunday Times
A church was robbed and a pastor threatened in Sri Lanka in recent weeks, according to reports from the National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka and Compass Direct.

On the evening of April 5, a gang of unidentified assailants broke into a Methodist church building in the city of Dehiwela, Colombo district. Musical instruments, Bibles, hymn books and church documents, including baptism and marriage records, were stolen.

On April 8, four Buddhist militants gathered outside Pastor Padeep Kumara's home in the town of Weeraketiya, Hambanthota district. They demanded that he come outside and threatened to kill him. Pastor Kumara's wife, who was home with their two children, phoned her husband, but by the time he arrived home the militants had fled. Later that evening, the leader of the militant group phoned the pastor several times and threatened to kill him if he did not leave the village by morning. He then returned to the pastor's house and threatened him with violence. When the police arrived, the leader was arrested. He was released the following day and drew up a petition along with other local Buddhists against Pastor Kumara's church. The Buddhists also threatened the owner of the pastor's home with violence if he did not evict the family. The pastor's children have since been moved to a new location for safety.

Ask God to protect and encourage Pastor Kumara and his family. Pray that the perpetrators of these attacks will come to repentance and salvation. Ask God to enable Sri Lankan Christians to remain steadfast in the face of suffering (Revelation 2:10).

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

Current Ministry Projects

VOMC supports persecuted Christians in Sri Lanka as they witness for Christ in hostile environments through Biblical training, legal aid, and advocacy, as well as rehabilitation and emergency assistance.

Project Funds: Relief and Development, Legal Defense

Country Information

Population
23,044,123 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Sinhalese (74.9), Sri Lankan Tamil (11.2), Sri Lankan Moors (9.2), Indian Tamil (4.2), other (0.5)

Religion (%)
Buddhism (70.2), Hinduism (12.6), Islam (9.7), Roman Catholic (6.1), Evangelical Christianity (2.0)

Leader
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa (2019)

Government type
Presidential republic

Legal system
Mixed legal system of Roman-Dutch civil law, English common law, and Jaffna Tamil customary law

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Sri Lanka

Let's unite our hearts in prayer for those in Sri Lanka who are being persecuted for their faith, thanking God for what He is accomplishing despite the opposition. Ask that His people will be encouraged, strengthened and equipped by the promises of the Bible – the Sword of the Spirit – knowing that He is watching over His Word to perform it (Ephesians 6:17; Jeremiah 1:12). May they not only overcome the strategies of the enemy, but also serve as effective witnesses to those in need of eternal salvation and deliverance from spiritual captivity.

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