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Shafqat Emmanuel & Shagufta Kausar - Photo: Family
Thank God for Shafqat and Shagufta's safety.
Photo: Family

In Pakistan, many Christians have been falsely accused of blasphemy, resulting in years of imprisonment. If released, their lives are frequently in greater danger outside of prison due to the threat of mob violence --- posing them to conditions that are far more serious than those they faced while in prison. To learn more about what life is like for Christians in Pakistan, and to read about the situations they have encountered, go to our country report.

The case of Asia Bibi made international headlines when years of prayers were answered with her acquittal in October 2018. However, threats of violence kept her locked away for her own safety until plans were made to have her secretly flown to Canada six months later. Asia was not alone in facing the real possibility of death after being released from prison. Such cases usually require the discrete relocation of released believers and their families to a safe undisclosed location for their protection.

In June, we were thankful to report that Shafqat Emmanuel and his wife Shagufta Kausar were finally acquitted on June 3rd, after waiting seven years on death row. We praise the Lord that, according to the latest report, they have since been released from prison and are now residing in a safe location with their children.

This Christian couple had been arrested in 2013, after a Muslim cleric claimed to have received a blasphemous text message from Shagufta's phone. Despite multiple irregularities proving their innocence, the two were sentenced to death for blasphemy. After years of legal appeals and delays, the verdict was finally overturned.

Praise God that Shafqat and Shagufta have been joyfully reunited with their children, and that they are now all residing together in a safe location. Pray that this Christian family will continue to be protected from vigilante violence. Considering the lengthy ordeal and separation they have all endured throughout the imprisonment, ask God to administer greatly needed healing and restoration in every area of their lives. Also prayerfully remember the many other Christians who remain incarcerated in Pakistan because of the false accusations of blasphemy against them. May they too experience the grace and strength of the Lord as they anticipate His promised deliverance and restoration in their own lives.

Current Ministry Projects

VOMC partners to train Christian women in sewing skills throughout Pakistan to provide a sustainable source of income for their families and encourage them in their faith and witness for Christ.

Project Funds: Families of Martyrs, Women’s Ministry

Country Information

Population
233,500,636 (July 2020 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Punjabi (44.7), Pashtun [Pathan] (15.4), Sindhi (14.1), Sariaki (8.4), Muhajirs (7.6), Balochi (3.6), other (6.3)

Religion (%)
Islam (96.4), Other - Christian and Hindu (3.6)

Leader
President Arif Alvi

Government type
Federal parliamentary republic

Legal system
Common law system with Islamic law influence

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Pakistan

Pray that amendments will be made to Pakistan's existing blasphemy laws so that the country's citizens – including its children – will be protected from injustice and abuse. May our Lord's mercy and justice prevail, not only in the judiciary system but also in the hearts of the country's militants. Ask Him to transform their "hearts of stone" into hearts that are receptive to His love, mercy and the workings of His Holy Spirit – not only for the purpose of protecting the Christian minority but also for the salvation of their own eternal souls.

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Pakistan News

  • Christian Medical Worker Forced to Decline Promotion
    Riaz Gill - Photo: Facebook
    Riaz Gill
    Photo: Facebook

    In recent months, a number of healthcare workers in Pakistan have faced opposition because of their Christian faith. In April, two nurses were charged with blasphemy after following instructions from their supervisor (see this report). In another instance, a nurse was accu

    ...
  • Acquitted Couple Finally Released!
    Shafqat Emmanuel & Shagufta Kausar - Photo: Family
    Thank God for Shafqat and Shagufta's safety.
    Photo: Family

    In Pakistan, many Christians have been falsely accused of blasphemy, resulting in years of imprisonment. If released, their lives are frequently in greater danger outside of prison due to the threat of mob violence --- posing them to conditi

    ...
  • Young Teens Forcibly Converted by Employers
    Young Pakistani bride
    Pray for young believers who
    are facing forced conversion.

    Two 13-year-old girls from Christian families have been forcibly married to their employers and converted to Islam in separate incidents. These recent cases further demonstrate the ongoing abuse of young Christian girls in the country. It is

    ...
  • Life Sentence Upheld
    Pastor Zafar Bhatti - Photo: Pakistan Christian Post
    Pastor Zafar Bhatti
    Photo: Pakistan Christian Post

    Pakistani pastor, Zafar Bhatti, has been in prison since July 2012, after being accused of sending blasphemous text messages. In May 2017, he was sentenced to life imprisonment. The accused pastor denies any involvement in the texts, stating that th

    ...