(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)
Prayer in the desert
Join Uzbek believers in prayer as they seek the Lord for wisdom in these cases.

A small number of religious communities in Uzbekistan received their registration in late 2019. However, many others are encountering major obstacles in their attempts to obtain registration, which would allow them to function legally. While Christians are one of the religious communities affected, other groups are facing similar impediments -- including bribe demands, land use permits and outright rejection. Some have chosen not to apply at all, believing they will be rejected anyway.

Uzbekistan is predominantly Sunni Muslim and differing religious groups have frequently faced issues. In Bukhara, a Shiite mosque was closed, and police have pressured the members to drop a petition to have it reopened. Roman Catholic parishes continue to wait for registration with no response. Other groups, like the Jehovah's Witnesses, have been directly rejected.

For the Tashkent Protestant Church, registration has been denied because officials claim there is no valid legal address. As a small church, the congregation members cannot afford to purchase a building at this point. Another church would not be able to assist them because only one religious organization is allowed at a single address. Without registration, the congregants need to notify local authorities of any scheduled meetings, including gatherings taking place in members' homes.

The Baptist Union congregation in Gulistan submitted a registration request in late September. They were informed that a certificate is required from the Land Registry office. To date, they have not received a response from the registry office. They were also informed of a required letter of endorsement from the chair of a local committee. However, that chairperson is making repeated demands, including a mandated list of all church members' names and their passports. For more information on the numerous challenges facing Christian communities in Uzbekistan, go to our country report.

Pray that God will work mightily in the hearts and minds of Uzbekistan's governing leaders, helping them to realize the need to respect the rights of all citizens. Ask that every obstacle will be removed so these churches can proceed with ministry in their communities. In the meantime, while serving as a Mediator among officials regarding the required registration, may God's Spirit ensure the ongoing proclamation of the Gospel throughout the nation.

Current Ministry Project

VOMC has been working with project partners over the past couple of years to affirm and equip Christian women for continued ministry and to encourage unity among them.

Project Fund: Equipping the Saints

Country Information

Population
30,842,796 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Uzbek (83.8), Tajik (4.8), Kazakh (2.5), Russian (2.3) Karakalpak (2.2), Tatar (1.5), other (4.4)

Religion (%)
Islam (88), Eastern Orthodox (9), other (3)

Leader
President Shavkat Mirziyoyev (2016)

Government type
Presidential republic; highly authoritarian

Legal system
Civil law system

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Uzbekistan

Thank you for praying on behalf of our brothers and sisters in Uzbekistan who are undergoing severe mistreatment by those governing over them. Ask the Lord to remind these persevering believers that they are truly His beloved children. As their Heavenly Father, He is the One who governs their souls and eternal destiny. May they have a heightened awareness of His abiding presence, everlasting love, help in times of trouble – and whatever else they specifically need – as conveyed through the infallible promises of His powerful Word.

end

Select a Region

Uzbekistan News

  • Christian Fined for Distributing Magazines
    Magazines

    This past Christmas, a neighbourhood celebration in Uzbekistan was hosted by Tatyana Akhmadiyeva, a member of a local Baptist church. At the event, she offered Christian magazines to 15 of her neighbours. Local authorities received a report about the distribution and summoned Tatyana for questioning

    ...
  • Registration Applications Denied
    Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tashkent - Photo: Wikimedia Commons https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Evangelical_Lutheran_Church_in_Tashkent_15-12.JPG Bobyrr, CC BY-SA 4.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
    A Lutheran church in
    Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
    Photo: Wikipedia / Bobyrr (cc)

    Although religious communities in Uzbekistan would like to obtain official permission (to exist), as required by the state, all their applications have been blocked. Protestant churches, Shia Muslim communities, along with gr

    ...
  • Obstacles to Registration
    Prayer in the desert
    Join Uzbek believers in prayer as they seek the Lord for wisdom in these cases.

    A small number of religious communities in Uzbekistan received their registration in late 2019. However, many others are encountering major obstacles in their attempts to obtain registration, which would allow them to fun

    ...
  • Woman Killed for Her Faith
    Tashkent, Uzbekistan - Photo: Wikipedia / Atilin
    Tashkent, Uzbekistan
    Photo: Wikipedia / Atilin (c)

    A Christian mother in Uzbekistan was killed by her husband on February 9th because she had recently accepted Christ. The attack happened at the Tashkent airport as she was attempting to flee the country.

    Problems for "Umida" (not her real name) beg

    ...