By Emily Drooby
Every day, Christians around the world are persecuted for their beliefs.
This Good Friday, hundreds prayed for them during an online vigil hosted by the group “Save the Persecuted Christians.”
“We don’t understand what true suffering is, and so this is just an incredible way to reach out across the miles and connect with one another,” explained Dede Laugesen, the organization’s executive director.
The second annual event started in Jerusalem early in the morning, and continues for 24 hours straight.
Across the world, an estimated 327 million Christians are persecuted for their faith. That’s about the same number as the entire population in the U.S..
In West Africa, prayer facilitator Dr. Oluwasayo Ajiboye was a pastor who experienced persecution first hand.
“I heard with my own ears a preacher, Islamic preacher say if his daughter dares to marry a Christian, that he would kill her himself,” Dr. Ajiboye recalled.
This year, the COVID-19 crisis is opening the door to new forms of persecution.
According to Dede, some Muslims in Pakistan and some Hindus in India are responsible for cutting off the Christian rations.
“Know that in Pakistan, in India, in Vietnam and elsewhere, Christians are being denied the rations that they’ve been promised by their governments,” he said. “And they’re being denied these rations by groups that are opposed to their love for Jesus.”
According to Dede, Muslims in Pakistan and Hindus in India are responsible for cutting off the Christian rations.
Everyone participating in the vigil prays it gives a voice to the voiceless and hope where none exists.