(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)

While the majority of Christians around the world were peacefully celebrating our Lord's birth on Christmas Eve, vicious attacks took place during two church services in northern Nigeria that have resulted in the deaths of at least 12 innocent people. This is the third year in a row that violent attacks have been launched against Christians in Nigeria at Christmas. For more information on the challenges facing Nigerian believers, go to the Nigeria Country Report.

Gunmen opened fire at the Church of Christ in Nations located in a small village of Yobe state, killing a total of six people, including the pastor. The perpetrators also set the church on fire and left several congregants seriously injured. That same night, a deacon and five other Christians were killed at the First Baptist Church in the city of Maiduguri (Borno state). Although no one has claimed responsibility for this year's attacks, an Islamist terrorist group known as Boko Haram is widely suspected. Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan has issued a statement promising improved security for Christian communities.

Please lift up those who have been greatly impacted by the attacks, asking God to overshadow them with His comforting presence and perfect peace. Also pray that He will powerfully minister healing to the injured and bereaved, and that all surviving Christians in northern Nigeria will receive an extra measure of His grace and strength to remain faithful in the midst of persecution. Thank the Lord for His promise to remain close to the brokenhearted and to save those who are crushed in spirit (Psalm 34:18). May He impart wisdom and courage to the country's authorities as they take necessary steps to end the violence caused by extremism.

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.

end

Select a Region

Nigeria News

  • Multiple Attacks on Christian Villages
    Rubble of a home
    A burned home in Kagoro, Kaduna State.
    Photo: Gideon Agwom Mutum via Morning Star News

    The Nigerian state of Kaduna experienced multiple attacks on predominantly Christian villages between March 17th and March 24th. Due to the nature of these recent attacks, the exact number of victims is not yet cl

    ...
  • Leah Still in Captivity After Four Years
    Leah Sharibu
    Leah Sharibu

    February 19th marked the fourth anniversary of the abduction of Leah Sharibu, a Nigerian schoolgirl who was kidnapped by Boko Haram terrorists when she was only 14 years old. Originally, 110 students were captured during the raid. Five died following the attack and, after negotiations,

    ...