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The result of a previous Boko Haram
car bombing in Jos, Nigeria.
Diariocritico de Venezuela via Barnabas Fund

At least 28 Christians were brutally murdered by militants during the weeks of Christmas and New Year's.

On January 2nd, Fulani militants torched houses and killed 15 people in Ambe-Madaki village, Kaduna State. Ten others in the same area were murdered days earlier on December 27th. In Plateau State, Fulani gunmen killed three Christians in Kantoma village on New Year's Eve. One of the believers was gruesomely beheaded, creating a wave of panic. In Gombe city, Gombe State, a suicide bomb attack caused injuries to at least eight Christians who were guarding a New Year's Day prayer service. The explosion is thought to be the work of the Muslim militant group Boko Haram, in keeping with their declaration of an Islamic caliphate in northern Nigeria. Churches, which are often the target of Boko Haram bomb attacks, were thankfully spared over Christmas.

"Christians in northern Nigeria face attack on two fronts: by Fulani militants who want their land, and Boko Haram who want an Islamic state," explains Paul Robinson, the Chief Executive Officer of Release International (VOMC's sister mission in the UK). He further notes the concern that Boko Haram may attempt to step up their attacks prior to the country's forthcoming elections in February.

In the midst of ongoing chaos and carnage in Nigeria, pray that God will grant much needed peace and strength to the assaulted church there. In particular, may those now grieving the loss of loved ones due to these latest attacks be greatly comforted and given the ability to extend grace and forgiveness to the persecutors. Also pray that those recuperating from injuries will experience a full and swift recovery. In the coming weeks, may adequate security measures be taken to ensure safety for all citizens during the election, and may those elected work for greater stability in Nigeria.

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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