August 2017 Global Prayer Agenda

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     Category One

Prayer for North and South America, the Caribbean and Europe

Scripture Reading: Psalm 46: 1 – 11.

The United States of America

Prayer For Revival in the Church Across America

59 Percent of Millennials Raised in a Church Have Dropped Out—And They’re Trying to Tell Us Why

According to a recent study (and many others like it) church attendance and impressions of the church are the lowest in recent history, and most drastic among millennials described as 22- to 35-year-olds.

  • Only 2 in 10 Americans under 30 believe attending a church is important or worthwhile (an all-time low).
  • 59 percent of millennials raised in a church have dropped out.
  • 35 percent of millennials have an anti-churchstance, believing the church does more harm than good.
  • Millennials are the least likely age group of anyone to attend church (by far).

Among the negative impressions, causing millennials to distance themselves from the church in America are the following:

    1. Nobody’s Listening to Us
    2. We’re Sick of Hearing About Values & Mission Statements
    3. Helping the Poor Isn’t a Priority
    4. We’re Tired of You Blaming the Culture
    5. Distrust & Misallocation of Resources
    6. We Want to Be Mentored, Not Preached At
    7. We Want to Feel Valued
    8. We Want You to Talk to Us About Controversial Issues (Because No One Is)
    9. Stop Talking About Us (Unless You’re Actually Going to Do Something)
    10. You’re Failing to Adapt

(Source: www.Faithit.com, February 9, 2017)

This study, reflecting on the large-scale rejection by millennials of the church in America, is another indication of the dire need for spiritual renewal in the church America to cause it to arise from its spiritual slumber and to take a bold stand now to reach and rescue those in need of the redemptive love of Christ.  Let us pray for a move of God in the church across America. 

Pray

  1. That the Lord would continue to raise up intercessors across America with a true vision of intercession and call to stand in the gap for spiritual revival in the church to positively influence or transform American culture.
  2. For God’s people across the nation to experience a deep spiritual hunger and thirsting after God and His Word to lay the foundation for a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon His people across the nation for the growth of the church and for the continued evangelism of the lost, including those that view themselves as non-religious or atheists
  3. For revival among the mainline Protestant denominations that are either stagnant or in a state of decline, evidence by a lack of love for Christ, the Word of God, lack of love for His Church reflected in the declining attendance of church members, lack of joy and vibrancy in worship services, little evangelistic fruits and low community impact.

Prayer for the Survival and Strength Marriages and Families across the United States 

Young men giving up on marriage: ‘Women aren’t women anymore’

“Fewer young men in the US want to get married than ever, while the desire for marriage is rising among young women, according to the Pew Research Center.”

“Pew recently found that the number of women 18-34 saying that having a successful marriage is one of the most important things rose from 28 percent to 37 percent since 1997. The number of young adult men saying the same thing dropped from 35 percent to 29 percent in the same time.”

“A cross section of research data from the Pew Research Center for the last months of 2012 shows the alarming trends for marriage and child-bearing in the US. One report published in mid-December said that the latest census data showed “barely half” of all adults in the United States are currently married, a “record low”. Since 1960, the number of married adults has decreased from 72 percent to 51 today and the number of new marriages in the U.S. declined by five percent between 2009 and 2010.”

“Moreover, the median age at first marriage continues to rise with women getting married the first time at 26.5 years and men at 28.7. The declines in marriage are “most dramatic” among young adults. Just 20 percent of those aged 18 to 29 are married, compared with 59 percent in 1960.”

“If current trends continue, the share of adults who are currently married will drop to below half within a few years,” the report said.

“Moreover, the link between marriage and childrearing has become disconnected in the minds of the so-called Millennial generation, those between 18 and 29. While 52 percent of Millennials say being a good parent is “one of the most important things” in life, just 30 per cent say the same about having a successful marriage, an attitudinal survey found.”

“The gap, of 22 percentage points, between the value Millennials place on parenthood over marriage, was just 7 points in 1997. The research found that Millennials, many of whom are the children of divorce and single-parenthood themselves, are also less likely than their elders to say that a child needs both a father and mother at home, that single parenthood and unmarried couple parenthood are bad for society.” (Source: www.Lifesitenews.com, )

PRAY

The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. They forbid people to marry …. (1 Timothy 4: 1 – 3, NIV)           

  1. For the Christian community across America to take a bold stand in support of marriage as it was originally instituted and ordained by God as a lifelong relationship between one man (the husband) and one woman (the wife).
  2. For God’s blessings upon Christian marriages across the country and also the protection, survival and success of all marriages in the Christian community facing the onslaught of a high divorce rate within and other threats posed by the forces of secular humanism, feminism, and other evils.  That these blessings from God  on Christian marriages will     demonstrate to the world that the traditional marriage as He designed and ordained it is still vital relevant to the development and survival of nations for general success of Christian couples throughout the US to remain faithful to the firm stance of the church against divorce, gay marriage and   success of Christian marriages
  3. For the maintenance and establishment of new laws in the US Congress aimed at protecting, preserving, and facilitating the acceptance and growth of traditional marriage as an important aspect of the social and economic development of the nation.

Prayer for the US Government

“If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand.” (Mark 3:24-25)

The lack of unity among members of Congress has stifled the effectiveness of the US government for a long time, and the problem is so entrenched in this important US institution of government that the problem is quite evident even when one party is in control of Congress and the White House. This position is strongly supported by Tom McDonald in his recently published article, Republicans and the Will to Govern.  

“With President Donald J. Trump in the White House and the GOP controlling Congress, the expectation among the electorate was for swift and vast changes. The reality has been anything but!”

“The failure here has not been in our leadership, it’s certainly not been in the president, it’s been in our inability to overcome our own differences and our lack of trust in one another,” said Oklahoma Republican Rep. Tom Cole, of the GOP’s lack of firm footing in garnering change.

“While the House was able to pass the American Health Care Act, the Republican health care plan has yet to be acted upon in the Senate. And it is expected that changes will be initiated within the upper chamber that will require further action by the House before a final version of the bill replacing the ACA can be presented to President Trump.”

“Many believe the ability or inability of the Senate and House to legislate a workable replacement for the ACA will ultimately tell the tale of whether the GOP can and will effectively govern.”

This level of dysfunction plaguing the US Government demonstrates just how important it is for American Christians to heed Paul’s instructions in (1 Timothy 2:1 – 3) to pray for their government..

(Source: Portions of this article have been quoted from, Tom McDonald’s article, Republicans and the Will to Govern published on the website www.ThePresidentialPrayerTeam.com)

PRAY

  1. For members of congress to overcome petty political differences and to find ways to cooperate and effectively govern
  2. For our leaders to yield to the dictate of moral/spiritual truths and principles that guided the course that led America throughout her history and that such dictate would result in them   putting the welfare of America ahead of party politics and personal interest.
  3. For the Trump administration to continue to work together with Congress to advance the general welfare of the nation, against political interest

South America and The Caribbean

Prayer For Jamaica, Facing A Surge in Murders and Other Violent Crimes

Mobile gangsters bedevil Jamaica policing

Early in July gangsters ran riot in an outbreak of violence that affected most of the inner-city neighborhoods of Kingston, Jamaica. Twelve died and 15+ sustained gunshot wounds. Some of the incidents stemmed from petty conflicts between gangsters who knew each other. But other incidents came from mobile gangsters. Mobile gangsters leave one gang and abet another gang in another community where no one else knows them. Then the mobile gangsters return to their home base, making them difficult to track.

Damian Hutchison, Executive Director of the Peace Management Initiative (PMI), traces this situation to the crackdown of 2010. At that time police went after gang leaders and broke up their gangs. But the gangs only splintered and multiplied. Now Greater Kingston has a whopping total of 123 gangs. Jamaica has more than 200 nationwide. Mobile gangsters network across former gang boundaries. They “do their own thing their own way,” says Hutchinson. Police find mobile gangsters far more difficult to track down than if they stayed on one gang turf and followed one gang leader.

Gang leaders are now recruiting from schools to bolster their numbers. They seek students with little parental oversight. They lure them with food, money, and a sense of identity and purpose with their particular gang “family”. Then they coerce the students into drug-running, gun-running, extortion and other criminal activities, in order to stay under the care and protection of the “family.”

But if these students break away, they too may become mobile gangsters. Many who grow up in crime-ridden communities know no other life. This scenario has become increasingly common in many Caribbean and Latin American cities. We need a massive move of God to deliver them from the evils of gang domination.

Sources:

Under The Gun! Fear And Panic Across The Corporate Area As Gangsters Run Riot In Several Communities. Jamaica Gleaner, July 9, 2017.

Young Thugs Doing The Killings! Mobile Gangsters Teaming Up Across Political And Physical Boundaries In The Corporate Area. Jamaica Gleaner July 9, 2017.


Pray

  1. For an increased opportunity among the Christian community on the island of Jamaica to reach these prodigal sons with the love of God.
  2. For those gang relationships resulting from infiltration of gang networks into the Jamaican school-system to be dissolved and replaced with divinely ordained relationships, and safe places in the family of God, set them on a course of character-building, peacemaking and constructive social skills.
  3. For exposure of all political corruption influencing gang activities and other acts of evil that have allowed the wicked to prosper in the land.
  4. For the police and others in law enforcement to receive wisdom and guidance to track down and bring to justice those who persist in these criminal activities.

Europe

Prayer for Hungary

Hungary pledges support for Israel during budapest-talks

EURONEWS | July 18, 2017

http://www.euronews.com/2017/07/18/hungary-pledges-support-for-israel-during-budapest-talks

Hungary’s Prime Minister has hosted Israeli counterpart, in a visit overshadowed by accusations of anti-semitism.  Vicktor Orban offered his support to Benjamin Netanyahu, who is seeking to strenghten Israel’s ties with countries who will defend its interests.

The visit comes amid the Hungarian government’s flirtation with the radical right, which has unnerved with local Jewish population. Orban has praised Hungary’s inter-war leader Miklos Horthy, a Hitler ally, and used an image of Jewish financier George Soros in an anti-immigration billboard campaign.

However, the leader has repeatedly pledged zero tolerance of anti-Semitism.

Netanyahu wants pragmatic partners from the European Union, who will not object to Israel’s controversial settlement policies. After talks in Budapest [Hungary], Mr Orban said: “On behalf of the Hungarian government I made it clear that we recognize the right of Israel to defend itself, and we also expect others to recognize our right to do so.”

Mr Netanyahu said: “I also want to thank you, prime minister, for standing up for Israel in international forums. You have done that time and time again, we appreciate this stance not only because it is standing with Israel, but its also standing with the truth.” His visit to Hungary is the first by an Israeli leader since the fall of communism.

He will also meet the Polish, Czech and Slovak leaders in Budapest [Hungary] on Wednesday.

Related news:

  • [Hungary] The First Country to Officially Defend Christians Persecuted by ISIS

http://www.christianitytoday.com/news/2016/september/first-country-to-officially-defend-christians-persecuted-by.html

  • EU prepares to unleash ‘NUCLEAR OPTION’ on Hungary: Brussels loses patience with Orban

http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/806186/hungary-viktor-orban-european-union-nuclear-vote

  • Israeli PM and central European states [including Hungary] attack the EU

http://www.euronews.com/2017/07/19/israeli-pm-and-central-european-states-attack-eu

Pray

  1. That God will bless the nation of Hungary with lasting peace, prosperity and stability AS they CONTINUE to stand in defence of both Christians and Israel;
  2. That in the impasse between Hungary and the European Union, Hungary will be able to stand strong and to maintain its stance in support of both Christians and Israel;
  3. That efforts such as the ReachBudapest initiative, to bring about the spiritual transformation of Budapest through the gospel, will bear fruit and spread throughout and beyond Hungary.

Prayer for the united Kingdom

93 Percent of UK Christians Feel Their Faith Is Marginalized, Survey Says

BYSAMUEL SMITH, CP REPORTER | Jul 17, 2017 | 6:40 AM

http://www.christianpost.com/news/93-percent-of-uk-christians-feel-their-faith-is-marginalized-survey-says-192107/

A survey conducted by Premier Christian Communications, … has found that over 9 out of 10 Christians in the United Kingdom believe that their faith is being marginalized in British society today. Premier reported on Sunday that to date, over 12,000 “ordinary Christians” have taken part in its “State of the Faith” survey.

According to the data, 93 percent of the Christian respondents “believe that Christianity is being marginalised” in the U.K., while 50 percent say they have experienced prejudice because of their faith. Fifty-three percent say they strongly agree that Christianity is being marginalized, while 40 percent agree. Top of Form

Four out of 5 Christians (80 percent) who took part in the survey believe that “Christianity is not given equal respect” as other worldviews and religions. Meanwhile, 26 percent of respondents say that they are unable to be open about their faith in their workplace or equivalent setting. According to Premier, 67 percent of respondents say that it is not considered acceptable in society for Christians to share their faith with others, while just 29 percent disagree. Younger Christians were more likely to say that the experienced prejudice for their faith. The survey found that 70 percent of respondents aged 15 to 19 faced prejudice because of their faith. … “… we may be moving into a period when debate is shut down — where you can’t have an honest debate and agree to differ,” Nola Leach, the head of a Christian lobbying group called Care, told Premier.

Premier CEO Peter Kerridge said in a statement… “This survey clearly indicates how it feels to be an ordinary Christian today,” he said. “This is not the clergy talking, or academics theorising, or politicians making a case. These are ordinary Christians who feel overwhelmingly that their Christian beliefs are being marginalised and that as a result it is becoming far more difficult to live as a person of faith in the UK …”

The survey comes after a number of incidents have occurred in the U.K. in which Christians faced backlash for living and acting in accordance with their faith. Last year, a Christian nurse was fired by Darent Valley Hospital in Dartford after patients complained that she engaged them in “unwanted discussions” in which she talked about her personal faith and offered to pray with them.

Earlier this year, two Christian street preachers were convicted of disorderly conduct and fined for speaking out at a public shopping center in Bristol against homosexuality and Islam. They later won an appeal.  Additionally, a number of Christian schools have had their statuses downgraded by the U.K’s top education watchdog Ofsted for not teaching their students enough about other religions and for their teachings on homosexuality. And last month, Tim Farron resigned as leader of the Liberal Democrats, saying it was impossible to lead the party and remain true to his Christian faith.

“We are kidding ourselves if we think we yet live in a tolerant, liberal society,” he said in his resignation statement. …California evangelist Greg Laurie warned last month that the United States could become a “post-Christian” nation like the U.K. and other European countries if a spiritual awakening does not happen soon.

“I think we can look at Europe as maybe a model,” Laurie told The Christian Post. “Europe has become so concerned with political correctness and has moved to what is often described as a ‘post-Christian’ state, where church attendance is at an all-time low. I think if the people of the U.K. and Europe in general would turn to God, they would find strength and truth that would help them in the battle against terrorism and their cultures in general.”

Pray

  1. That instead of self-pity, Christians in the UK will take on a more positive attitude towards persecution that faces them due to their identification with Jesus Christ and that they will learn to really count it a blessing;
  2. That Christians in the UK will become increasingly bold and wise in declaring the gospel – both publicly and privately;
  3. That God will overthrow and demolish every opposition and effort to suppress Christian witness in the UK.

 

Prayer For Christian Refugees Facing Discrimination in Europe

Christian Refugees Banned from Seeking Asylum On Greek Mainland After Fleeing Persecution

Posted by icheraldadmin On July 19, 2017

http://intlchristianherald.com/christian-refugees-banned-from-seeking-asylum-on-greek-mainland-after-fleeing-persecution/

Christian refugees have been blocked from seeking asylum on the Greek mainland after fleeing Islamic persecution in the camps in the Greek Isles.

Muslim persecution of Christians from Syria, Afghanistan, and other Muslim countries has run rampant in the Moria refugee camp on the Isle of Lesbos, according to the British Pakistani Christian Association (BPCA). Christians in the camp have received death threats, been barred from openly practicing their faith, and in some cases have been beaten and had their makeshift homes destroyed at the hands of Islamic radicals. Many Christians have fled for their lives to seek asylum on the mainland, but current Greek policy turned them back to the camp, according to Wilson Chowdhry, president of BPCA.

Many Christians who fled Lesbos but were denied asylum on the mainland became illegal immigrants, as they could only receive state assistance and legally apply for asylum if they returned to their refugee camp. Christians like Haroon Maqbool of Pakistan, who arrived in Lesbos in 2016 with two children, chose not to face the dangers of the persecution they had already escaped, according to BPCA. Maqbool attempted to register for asylum at the camp in Lesbos but was pushed to the back of the line with other Christian men by Muslims who said they would kill him and the others if they entered the camp. Maqbool chose to flee by boat to the mainland instead of risking his life and has lived illegally in Greece for nine months.

BPCA told Christian Post that Maqbool’s situation is not unique among Christians who came to Lesbos. “Many just choose to be homeless rather than return back and stay at those camps,” Chowdhry said. “Those camps are extremely terrifying.”

Pray

  1. Change in Greek policy to ensure that Christian refugees fleeing persecution are granted asylum and are not sent back to the Muslim-majority Moria refugee camp on the Greek Isle of Lesbos;
  2. Protection of Christian refugees from attacks and harassment at the hands of their Muslim neighbors in the Moria refugee camp;
  3. God will strengthen, empower and enable the Christian refugees to bear powerful witness to the name of Christ amidst their hardships.

Category 2

Israel, the Middle East and Africa

Scripture—Psalm 89:11-18

 

Israel

Thousands of Muslim worshipers entered the Temple Mount on Thursday for the first time in nearly two weeks, many shouting in delight as they did so, and violent clashes erupted between Palestinians and Israeli security forces at the compound.

Channel 2 reported that 10 police officers were injured in the ensuing clashes. Some 115 Palestinians were treated for injuries both inside the compound and in the surrounding area, according to the Palestinian Red Crescent. A spokesperson said the injuries were mainly caused by rubber bullets, burns and bruises. Fifteen people were hospitalized, it said. Police said worshipers began hurling rocks at security forces upon their reentry to the compound.

After Israel removed the metal detectors and other security measures around the compound installed by police after a July 14 terror attack, Palestinians were given the all-clear by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Jerusalem’s Muslim religious authorities on Thursday to end their 12-day boycott of the holy site. However, a last-minute confrontation erupted at the Huta Gate where two Israeli policemen were killed on July 14 by three Arab Israeli gunmen who had smuggled weapons into the site. The Huta Gate was the final gate to remain closed as police rolled back the security measures this week. (Dov Lieber, Times of Israel, July 28, 2017)

http://www.timesofisrael.com/clashes-erupt-at-temple-mount-as-muslim-worshipers-return-to-site/

Israeli officials say three Israelis died and one more was wounded when a Palestinian broke into a home in a West Bank settlement and stabbed its residents while they were eating dinner. Two of the victims died Friday soon after the attack in the area known as Neve Tsuf, north of Ramallah. Another victim died later in the day.

The assailant was shot by Israeli police and is hospitalized in Israel. He has been identified as 20-year-old Omar al-Abed. His brother also has been arrested. (VOA News, July 22, 2017)

https://www.voanews.com/a/israel-palestinians-violence/3954785.html

Pray

  1. Thank God for the restoration of peace at the Temple Mount. Continue to pray for the peace, protection, and prosperity of Israel.
  2. Thank God that the US government has openly shown their support for Israel.
  3. Pray for the strengthening and growth of the Church in Israel.

 

Syria

The United Nations estimated Thursday that 20,000 to 50,000 civilians remained trapped in the Syrian city of Raqqa, the site of heavy fighting as U.S.-backed local forces seek to defeat Islamic State militants in their self-declared capital.

U.N. deputy humanitarian chief Ursula Mueller told the Security Council, “Their situation is perilous. There is no way for them to get out.” Mueller said the heavy fighting and airstrikes had killed or injured dozens of civilians and had displaced more than 30,000 people in July. (Margaret Besheer, VOA News, July 27, 2017)

https://www.voanews.com/a/united-nations-says-up-to-fifty-thousand-civilians-still-trapped-raqqa/3961749.html

Syrian government warplanes broke a cease-fire agreement Monday for the second consecutive day with airstrikes on districts in rebel-held Eastern Ghouta near the country’s capital, Damascus, say political activists. According to the British-based monitoring group Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a bombing raid Monday on the town of Arbin left eight civilians dead and at least 30 wounded. The Syrian military said it launched the bombing runs because of a breach of the cease-fire by Jaish al-Islam – an armed opposition group.

On Sunday, government warplanes launched half-a-dozen airstrikes on the towns of Douma and Ain Terma, breaking the so-called Cairo agreement sponsored by Egypt and Russia, which officially went into effect at noon Saturday. (Jamie Dettmer, VOA News, July 25, 2017)

https://www.voanews.com/a/syria-airstrikes-cease-fire/3958293.html

The United States will give Lebanon an extra $140 million to help Syrian refugees and the communities hosting them, the State Department said during a U.S. state visit by Lebanon’s Prime Minister. Lebanon is hosting at least 1.5 million Syrian refugees who have fled the more than six-year conflict there and who now make up about a quarter of the country’s population.

The latest grant means the United States has given Lebanon more than $1.5 billion in humanitarian assistance since the start of the conflict in 2012, the State Department said. (Reuters, July 26, 2017)

http://www.christianpost.com/news/us-to-give-extra-140m-to-aid-syrian-refugees-in-lebanon-193310/

Pray

  1. Pray for the establishing of peace in Syria. Also, pray for the liberation of the city of Raqqa from the control of IS.
  2. Pray that humanitarian aid will get to the Syrian Refugees in Lebanon. Also thank God for the financial support that the US government has given to help the Syrian Refugees.
  3. Pray for the protection and growth of the Church in Syria.

Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)

One of Democratic Republic of Congo’s most notorious warlords, Ntabo Ntaberi Sheka, wanted for alleged crimes against humanity, surrendered to U.N. peacekeepers on Wednesday, the U.N. mission in Congo (MONUSCO) said.

Sheka’s militia, Mai-Mai Sheka, is one of a patchwork of armed groups in eastern Congo regularly accused by the United Nations and rights groups of using rape as a weapon of war. After six years on the run, Sheka surrendered to U.N. forces in the town of Mutongo in Walikale territory and was transferred to the eastern city of Goma, said MONUSCO spokeswoman Fabienne Pompey. It was not immediately clear why he had turned himself in. (Reuters, July 26, 2017)

https://www.voanews.com/a/wanted-congo-warlord-surrenders-to-un-forces/3960246.html

Congo military “elements” are responsible for digging at least 42 mass graves in three Kasai provinces after clashes with alleged militia members in recent months, the United Nations said as experts were appointed Wednesday to look into a growing crisis that has killed hundreds and displaced more than a million people.

Human rights have deteriorated alarmingly due to the “brutal and disproportionate repression against the Kamuina Nsapu militia by the Congolese defense forces,” the U.N. Joint Human Rights Office in Congo said in a new report. Congolese soldiers have killed more than 428 people, including women and 140 children, in the once-calm Kasai provinces as of June, the office said. The militia has killed at least 37 people during that time, it said.

The U.N. said it regrets the “lack of efforts” to ensure independent investigations into the serious human rights violations that have included sexual violence and the use of child soldiers. The Catholic church has estimated that more than 3,300 people have died in the fighting in the Kasai provinces since the military killed the militia’s traditional chief in August. (Associated Press, July 26, 2017)

https://www.voanews.com/a/congo-mass-graves/3959778.html

 

Pray

  1. Pray that the perpetrators of the heinous acts in Democratic Republic of Congo would experience justice.
  2. Pray for GOD to comfort the families of victims including the UN human rights experts.
  3. We pray for the protection of humanitarian workers, journalists, local citizens from the evil forces in Democratic Republic of Congo.
  4. We Pray for strengthening and growth of the Church in Democratic Republic of Congo.

 

Somalia

Somalia is suffering from a renewed displacement crisis as people flee drought and conflict, particularly in the country’s southern region. Gerard Waite, chief of mission for the International Organization for Migration Somalia, told VOA that about 800,000 people have fled their homes in response to the drought over the past seven months. That is in addition to the 1.1 million people who were previously displaced in the country.

“We have a displacement crisis on top of a drought crisis,” Waite said. “The 800,000 new IDPs [internally displaced persons] that have resulted from the drought have put incredible pressure on the existing camps. The formation of new camps has developed, [and] these camps are, by and large, not very well managed. They are normally on private land in very cramped conditions. They do not have the basic services in these camps.”

A side effect of this displacement is people living in squalid conditions and being forced to drink unclean water. This has resulted in over 71,000 cases of cholera or acute watery diarrhea in 2017, resulting in nearly 1,100 deaths. (Salem Solomon, VOA News, July 26, 2017)

https://www.voanews.com/a/somalia-drought-famine/3959930.html

 

Pray

  1. Pray that humanitarian and medical aid will get to the needy Somalians. Also pray for an end to the drought in Somalia.
  2. Pray for the defeat and dissolution of the terrorist group al-Shabaab. Also, pray for peace to be established in Somalia.
  3. Pray for the protection and growth of the Church in Somalia.

 

Kenya

Somali-based terror group al-Shabaab killed seven Christians in a series of deadly raids in Kenya earlier this month where the Islamic radicals went door-to-door in villages looking for believers. Persecution watchdog group International Christian Concern reported on Monday that seven Christians were among the victims in the raids carried out by al-Shabaab between July 5–8, when the militants attacked the villages of Pandanguo, Jima, and Poromoko.

“The attackers have been targeting Christians living in Lamu County, especially farmers in the interior areas where small-scale agriculture thrives,” said Pastor Henry Divayo, head of the church in Witu town. “Victims have been evacuated to camps where food and security is provided by [the] government and the Kenya Red Cross,” Divayo added. “We are hosting more than 200 people in our church and we expect the number to increase as more families are evacuated from Boni Forest.” (Stoyan Zaimov, Christian Post Reporter, July 25, 2017)

http://www.christianpost.com/news/al-shabaab-slaughters-seven-christians-door-to-door-id-checks-kenyan-villages-193132/

With political tensions running high, it’s too early to tell how the August 8 elections might go. But Marietje Schaake, the head of the 2017 European Union Election Observation Mission to Kenya, says the voters she’s met with ardently hope there will be no election drama this time around.

“I myself have visited Mombasa, Eldoret and two other regions of Kenya, other than Nairobi, to talk to as many Kenyans as possible about what they see as important elements of this election. The vast majority of Kenyans want nothing more other than this election to be credible, transparent and peaceful,” Schaake told VOA’s Horn of Africa service in an interview Friday. (Sora Halake and Dan Joseph, VOA News, July 21, 2017)

https://www.voanews.com/a/european-union-monitors-watching-kenya-election-preparations/3954040.html

Pray

Pray that the al-Shabaab terrorists responsible for the killing of the seven Christians will be brought to justice.

  1. Pray for free, fair, transparent, and peaceful elections.
  2. Pray for the growth and strengthening of the Church in Kenya.

Category 3

Prayer for Movement Day Global Cities, the Persecuted Church and Other Critical Concerns of Asia

Scripture   –   Psalms 47: 1 – 9

  1. Movement Day Chennai, India, August 26, 2017. 

Movement Day Chennai, India, is set to take place on August 26th at the historic Le Meridien.

As we focus our prayers on this significant Gospel event let us bear in mind the following significant needs and challenges facing this important City of India:

Important Facts about Chennai

  • Population. Formerly known as Madras, Chennai is the capital of the southern state of Tamilnadu and with a population of 8.5 million, it  is India‘s sixth-largest city.
  • Culture. Chennai serves as one of the main gateways to South India and has a thriving local culture and art scene, and is one of the major destinations for medical tourism. It is considered one of the world’s fastest growing cities, although ranks 13th in terms of cleanliness.
  • Economy. Chennai is known as the Detroit of India because of its automobile industry, which produces more than 40% of the auto parts and motor vehicles in India. It houses some of the leading foreign banks, including Bank of America, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi, Citibank, Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India Ltd., Ryan Services and Standard Chartered Bank.
  • History of Christianity and Spiritual Climate.  Thomas, one of the twelve apostles of Jesus Christ, is associated with Chennai. He is said to have come to India as an evangelist and died in what is now Chennai. Two suburbs, Santhome and St. Thomas Mount, are named in his memory. There are more than 4,000 churches in Chennai; diverse intercessory groups, including the National Prayer Network, Light Up Chennai, a Monthly Prayer Gathering that meets every third Friday for the past 13 years, the Global Day of Prayer; and a number of Christian nongovernmental organizations, including Compassion International, World Vision, International Justice Mission, Prison Fellowship and Opportunity International..

Challenges to the Gospel in Chennai

  • Education for the poor and vulnerable resulting from an increasing slum population. The slum population has been increasing over the past decades almost doubling the number of people living in poverty in the past two decades alone. In 2011 29% of the population in Chennai were living in slums, compare to 30% to 40% of the population of Mumbai and Kolkata living in slums.
  • “The sharpest rise in unemployment among women was seen in Chennai, where the rate rose 17% points – from 2.3% in 2004 to 2005 to 18.8% in 2009 to 10.”Higher education levels for women have increased the supply of qualified workers, decreasing job availability and increasing unemployment.
  • Environmental Pollution, one of the leading cause of illness and death in India.

. (Mac Pier, A Disruptive Gospel: Stories & Strategies for Transforming Your City)

Pray

  1. Let us praise God for the rich history and growth of the Church in Chinnai, and the emergence over the years of robust market place ministries and various nongovernmental organizations offering hope to the people of Chennai;
  2. For the Movement Day conference to achieve the important task of mobilizing churches, pastors, market place leaders and diverse nonprofit agencies to collaborate their efforts in addressing the urgent spiritual, social and economic needs of the poor and marginalized people of Chennai.
  3. For the Movement Day conference to result in greater synergy between the church and corporate leaders to ensure the greatest impact on the city of Chennai.  Pray also that  whatever happens in Chennai as a result of the conference will serve as a model for rest of India’s cities.
  4. For the Movement Day conference to help facilitate the Gospel to have a greater impact upon the lives of millennial leaders moving into Chennai in search of economic opportunities and also for the significant conversations with leaders from 20 cities concerning future MD expressions across India. Pray also for a covering of protection upon the registrants and the gathering.
  1. B. Other Upcoming Movement Day Expressions happening locally and internationally.

Pray

  1. On Wednesday, August 9thMac, Craig and Ebony will meet with international leaders at Willow Creek’s Global Leadership Summit to cast vision for the 100 Cities Summit. Pray that it would be a fruitful meeting.
  2. Continue praying that God would identify leadership teams that he is raising up to launch Movement Day Expressions globally. We want to identify 40 more leaders to attend the Movement Day Institute this October 18-19.
  3. Key stakeholders in Cleveland are being convened for an August conference call with our team. Pray for these leaders as they explore the cities readiness factors for an MD gathering.

 

The Global Persecution of Christians

Here’s the Million-Dollar Answer to How Persecuted Christians Persevere

“Persecution can be difficult to measure. (For example, should Christians who weren’t murdered for their faith count as martyrs?) But by all counts, religious freedom violations are on the rise worldwide. Islamist extremism and ethnic nationalism have pushed persecution to record levels three years in a row.”

“Christians bear the brunt, experiencing between 60 percent to 80 percent of religious discrimination, UCS researchers concluded. And evangelicals and Pentecostals bear the brunt of that. They are more likely to be persecuted than mainline Christians, Catholics, or Orthodox Christians, according to the UCS report. That’s because in most places, evangelicals and Pentecostals are the relative newcomers, without the long relationships and history that older Christian groups have.”

“Survival is the most common response of evangelicals. More than 2 out of 5 responses (43%) involved such strategies, including “going underground, flight, and accommodation to or support for repressive regimes.” The majority of Christians in Syria and Iraq, for example, have fled before the terror and executions of ISIS, dropping the estimated 1.5 million Christians in Iraq in 2003 down to 400,000 last year.”

Persecuted Christians are less likely to attempt association strategies, which involve building “ties with others that strengthen their resilience.” About 38 percent of responses fall into the association category, including Turkish Christians seeking ties with the Greek Orthodox Church, Indian Christians attempting to build alliances with Hindu and Muslim leaders, and Sri Lankan evangelicals collaborating with other faiths to provide social services.

Association isn’t a bad strategy, because “isolation is among the most formidable obstacles facing persecuted churches,” the report stated. “Persecuting regimes and militant groups aim to keep Christian communities disconnected, hidden, and obscure.”

(Source: Excerpted from Christianity Today, April 20,2017)

Pray

  1. Let us praise God for the continued growth of His Church worldwide despite increased persecution of Christians worldwide.
  2. Let us continue to praise God the resilience believers living particularly in Muslim majority countries in Asia and the Middle East, where they find themselves at greater risk of persecution from both the state and Islamic militants.
  3. For provision of believers facing increased persecution and for increased opportunities to overcome religious discrimination and isolation, and preserve the Christian witness in these nations.
  4. For the preservation and growth of the Christian communities in Iraq and Syria facing extinction from Isis.

 Other Important Facts about the Global persecution of Christians

  • 200 million Christians in more than 102 countries are affected by persecution, including kidnappings, sex-slavery, imprisonment, torture, and killings, including beheadings.
  • Persecution is “a form of religious-ethnic cleansing of Christian communities” resulting in mass migration and the sharp decline in the numbers of Christians in the Middle East and other countries across Asia and Africa.
  • Persecution is not just an issue for Christians but a human rights issue that affects us all. Christians, however, suffer harassment than any other religion in the world.
  • The incidence of persecution is highest in countries with a high level of religious extremism. (Source:http://www.christiantoday.com/article/pope.francis.sees.christian.genocide.as.persecution.affects.200.million.christians/60393.htm)

PRAY 

  1. For increased awareness of persecution and its impact on Christians, living in countries in Asia, Africa and the Middle East, with the highest incidence of
  2. For Christians suffering persecution to experience God’s grace to enable them to (i) respond to their persecutors in the spirit of the love of Christ, who has called on His followers to love “your enemies” and bless those that “persecute you”; (ii) to remain faithful to Christ despite the sufferings they are enduring.
  3. For Christians in the West not only to become more aware and compassionate about the mounting persecution of Christians around the world but also to be moved by the Spirit of God to become involved with helping to bring relief to the plight of these believers through prayer, advocacy and other practical support.

Prayer for China

China, House Churches, and the Growth of the Kingdom

Two-thirds of Chinese Christians attend a house church. 

“To understand the Church in China, it matters what terms mean: Three Self churches are ‘registered churches’ and house churches are ‘unregistered churches.’”

“House churches (formerly referred to as ‘underground churches’) are smaller, who in the past mostly met in homes to escape the control of the police. Today, at least in the city areas, they are larger—between 50 to 600 attendees—and most often rent space in commercial buildings. They are not registered with the government, and in most cases, are not allowed to own a building or buy commercial space. They get no money from government and, in some cases, are harassed and even shut down. At the same time, there are still many small groups who meet in homes.”

“To understand the nature of persecution/freedom, keep in mind these realities:

  • The issue isn’t so much freedom of religionas it is freedom of assembly. The government seems not as concerned about what people believe, as they are over people gathering in large groups or by becoming too public.
  • Most often, house churches can’t build or buy their own buildings. In cities, they seem to most often rent space to hold their meetings. Smaller groups, especially in the rural areas, meet in homes and structures are often built so as to accommodate a group larger than a family.
  • They can’t open a bank account in the name of church or group: finances are held in the name of a person.
  • Pastors assume that the security police know much of the activities of their house churches.
  • It’s impossible to estimate the number of house churches. A pastor told me that a member of national security estimated that in his city of Nanjing (a population of over 15 million), there were more than 5,000 house churches of 50 plus members. This number did not include house churches with less than 50.
  • China is divided into provinces. The national government gives much control to the provincial and municipal/city levels. In some provinces, house churches may be closed, as in Hangzhou (Zhejiang province) in 2016.
  • It is estimated that two-thirds of Christians attend a house church.
  • The underground Church operated quite literally out of sight of the ever-watching police. They did this for survival beginning in the 1950s and 1960s.
  • All forms of religion, including shrines, were decimated by Mao’s Cultural Revolution: their goal was to strip it of any spiritual legacy.
  • The Christian population is guessed at between 80 to 130 (or more) million.
  • The well-known saying, “What you have heard probably happened somewhere, sometime with someone,” is likely true, but be careful of taking one or two incidents and extrapolating that into a nation-wide government policy.

 

Let us pray for China

“What goes on in China matters to the Church worldwide; soon, it will be the country with the largest Christian population and, in time, it might have the world’s largest missionary force.

When Jesus said He would build His Church, He surely had China in mind.”

(Source:  Adopted from Christianity Today, June 2017)

PRAY

  1. Praise God for the survival, resilience and continued growth of the Christian community across China despite the various attempts by the Communist government to decimate the Christian faith in China.
  2. For house churches (underground churches) in China facing persecution to continue to grow and expand across the nation despite the persecution they face and that their survival and growth will serve as a valuable source of hope and inspiration to those Christians from North Korea, India and other nations suffering persecution for their faith.

 

 

Speak Your Mind


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