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Shadrack Luka, eight, was among 12 Christians wounded
in a church attack near Zonkwa, Kaduna state.
Photo: Compass Direct News

A murderous, four-hour rampage in early November in the eastern region of northern Nigeria left 150 people dead -- at least 130 of them Christians, according to church sources. Ten church buildings were also bombed and hundreds of people are still missing after more than 200 members of the Islamic extremist Boko Haram sect stormed the Yobe state capital on November 4. The attacks by Boko Haram were motivated by anti-Christian sentiments. Witnesses say the terrorists asked Christians they met to recite the Islamic creed, and those who could not do so were instantly slaughtered.

The day before the terrorist attack, an armed Muslim gang not believed to be affiliated with Boko Haram, killed two Nigerian mothers and injured 12 others including an eight-year-old boy in a raid on a Catholic church in Kaduna state. "As these Muslims began shooting, they shot Mrs. Justina Isaac, a mother of three, who had all the while been hanging around by the window outside the church listening to my teachings in the church," said a Catholic seminary student who was leading worship at the time. "And when she was felled by the bullets, the cry of her baby attracted another woman, Mrs. Hassana Luka, who came out of her house close to the church to find out what the problem was, only to be killed too." The following night, the gang went on to attack a Christian village in the same area killing another Christian and injuring one other.

Please pray that those who are beating and killing Christians in northern Nigeria will see their sin and will turn to Jesus and repent. Pray that the Lord will protect Christians in the region and that the families of those murdered will find peace and comfort in Him.

To learn more about persecution in Nigeria, please visit the Nigeria Country Report.

Current Ministry Projects

VOMC works with in-country partners to encourage and strengthen persecuted Christians through a variety of methods. Christians are equipped with audio bibles to distribute to their persecutors. Christian widows receive skills training and trauma counselling as a way to provide an income for their families and heal from the trauma they’ve faced in losing their husbands. Children who have lost parents and relatives due to attacks are provided with a safe place to grow and be nurtured. Medical fees are paid for Christians who have suffered injuries due to attacks by Boko Haram and Fulani. Discipleship and vocational training are given to Muslim Background Believers to help them start their new lives spiritually and practically. The Glenn Penner Scholarship Award is used to help equip persecuted Christians completing their Masters and have a heart to share the Gospel with the lost in their community.

Project Funds: Women’s Ministry, Bibles, Medical Fund, Families of Martyrs, Equipping the Saints, Relief & Development

Country Information

Population
219,463,862 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Hausa (30), Yoruba (15.5), Igbo (15.2), Fulani (6), Tiv (2.4), Kanuri/Beriberi (2.4), Ibibio (1.8), Izaw/Izon (1.8), Other (24.7)

Religion (%)
Islam (53.5), Christianity (45.9), Other (0.6)

Leader
President Muhammadu Buhari (2015)

Government type
Federal presidential republic

Legal system
Mixed legal system of English common law, Islamic law (in 12 northern states), and traditional law

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Nigeria

May God minister great comfort and healing to all who have been injured or bereaved as a result of the militants' brutal attacks. In addition, pray for the remaining abducted Chibok schoolgirls, that they will be assured of the Lord's abiding presence as they await release from captivity. Continue to uphold President Buhari and other members of the Nigerian government as they make further attempts to rescue the remaining girls and provide protection for vulnerable citizens. As they persevere in their endeavours to overcome terrorism, may they be granted wisdom, courage, strength and help from on high.

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