Update Nigeria: Native Missionaries Rescued; Another Mission Base Under Terrorist Attack

By Rae Burnett, Africa Director for Christian Aid Mission

Just as word came that native missionaries under siege last week had escaped from Muslim terrorist murderers, gospel workers from another mission field called in to report that they are now under attack:

Dear Rae,

Just as I am writing this evening, a whole village in southern Kaduna is fighting. We have five missionaries there now whose work among local unreached Muslim tribes has been very successful. They are helping to comfort and shelter unprepared villagers who fled in terror as heavily armed Muslim militants invaded without warning. No police or soldiers have come, and it is doubtful they will.

Please pray that our base there is not destroyed tonight. Pray that our missionaries will be safe. We have no money again to temporally move staff. Christian Aid sent out a prayer alert for our workers who were trapped after more than 400 people were killed last week near this same area when Muslims bombed three churches. Thank God they finally escaped from the danger zone.

The Islamic terrorist group Boko Haram has demanded that Sharia law be established in Nigeria. Fanatics have murdered more than 3,000 men, women and children since mid-2009. Thousand more have been maimed and wounded. Attacks have become increasingly bold and more frequent, often two or three per week. Until recently, the primary targets were schools and police stations in Muslim areas, but now Christians are under siege.

The location of an indigenous missionary ministry in Nigeria that Christian Aid has supported since 1986 is well-known to all. In spite of its location in an Islamic state, it has never been in danger of violence until the past few months when aggressive terrorist attacks have become bolder. With this new threat to focus on Christians, the need to relocate ministry headquarters has become critical.

They are planning to return soon when things are calmer. To me they are now like refugees in our own hands. We need your prayers for eight households, most of whom have children, their converts, and for our Nigeria It was not easy financially to bring these ones out. Now we need places to house and feed them.

When the killing began in the main city, Muslims in the small town started intimidating our people. They told them to leave or be blamed for the killing because we are making their people Christians. The village chief has welcomed and accepted our people, but he was afraid of the militants, so we temporarily retreated the missionaries. Many people died near them, and they admit that they were afraid.

There is still much good news.  All our Muslim converts on whose account we are being asked to leave are secure and protected now in our discipleship center. The chief wants us back when he knows it is safe.

The work has been so successful, beyond what we could ever have imagined, but that has given us such huge challenges.

The discipleship center for Muslim converts needs mosquito nets, school supplies for the children, and medical supplies. We are caring for many wounded in this war. We are committed to reaching the militants, and some few have left and joined us. We are discipling and protecting them in secret.

I am very sorry to keep disturbing you with crisis after crisis. It is that we value your prayers so much, and you always ask me to update you.

I know you will keep sharing this passion with others. We are so grateful for the many years of loving prayer and financial support form Christian Aid. We are just reeling with unbelief at the horrors our country is experiencing at the hands of these terrorist murderers. We know our Lord will use it all for good.

Pray for the peace of these areas and our country.

Signed, missionary leader, Nigeria

All of these native missionaries are well known to me. I am praying that God's people will be moved to help this ministry generously in this time of desperate need.

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