Category: 5 Minutes

5 Minute Challenge – Kazakhstan

Following the example of Tajikistan, Kazakhstan adopted new religious legislation. Kazakhstan’s prime minister Karim Masimov officially signed the laws on September 1, 2011 and within a month they were unanimously passed by the lower and upper house, with only minor amendments. The drafts were then sent to president Nursultan Nazarbaev to be signed into law. …

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5 Minute Challenge – Northern Nigeria

Last month, two suicide bombers drove their car into the worship service of the Jos Church of Christ in Nigeria (COCIN). Open Doors confirmed the killing of least four people and injuring of over 40 church members. Among the dead was a young girl, whose exact age remains unknown. The Islamist sect Boko Haram claimed …

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5 Minute Challenge – Eritrea

All evangelical churches were closed following the government’s ban on all religious groups other than state-approved Orthodox, Catholic, Lutheran or Islamic groups in 2002. Anyone discovered to be an evangelical is tortured and forced to revert to the registered denominations. If they don’t, they are held in military camps without trial. Around 1500 are believed …

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5 Minute Challenge – Afghanistan

All Afghan Christians come from a Muslim background. Believers who are discovered face discrimination from family and community, Muslim clergy and local authorities. The government treats converts in a hostile manner, using any means possible to make them recant. The tiny Christian minority cannot meet in public; meetings in private homes are possible, but require …

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5 Minute Challenge – Saudi Arabia

There is no freedom of religion here. The legal system is based on Islamic law and conversion to another religion is punishable by death if the accused does not recant. Non-Muslim public worship is prohibited, and although the government recognizes the right of non-Muslims to worship privately, the religious police often do not. Worshippers risk …

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5 Minute Challenge – Somalia

Somalia – civil war, life expectancy = 50 years, median age = 17 years, famine, pirates, hot climate, Sunni Muslim   No one is expected to be a Christian in Somalia, so there is no organized church. Muslim converts exist as individual secret believers, and can only know a few others to make a small …

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5 Minute Challenge – Iran

Ethnic Persians are by definition Muslim, so ethnic Christian converts are considered apostates. Almost all Christian activity is illegal – from evangelism to Bible training to publishing Christian books. Many church services are monitored by the secret police. The governor of Tehran has criticized Christian evangelicalism as a ‘corrupt and deviant movement’ and ‘a cultural invasion …

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5 Minute Challenge – Maldives

Pray for the Christians on the Maldive islands – that they will be brave among the secrecy. Pray that God will make Himself known.

5 Minute Challenge – Uzbekistan

Uzbek Christians strive to live with faith in God’s promises, despite the fear of surveillance, intimidation and imprisonment. Private Bible study meetings are always in danger of being closed down. Churches are raided and literature and other materials confiscated. Printing or importing Christian literature is prohibited. Christians are fined or given short-term prison sentences. When brought to court, fair treatment is not ensured.

5 Minute Challenge – Yemen

In January of 2011, the people of Yemen joined numerous other Arab countries and began protesting unemployment in the country, the economic conditions and corruption. Yemen is the poorest Arab country due to widespread corruption, low education levels, violence and mismanagement. Official statistics say that one out of every three Yemenis is unemployed, especially younger citizens. Almost half of the population lives under poverty line. Islam is the State religion, and Shari’a, the Islamic law, is the source of all legislation. The Government forbids conversion from Islam and proselytizing of Muslims. Family and the government are the main sources of oppression and persecution.