VOM Prayer Requests – Mali, Turkey and Burma

VOM-USA Prayer Update for February 24, 2012

The Voice of the Martyrs USA: www.persecution.com
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18

Mali—Safe Houses Foster Evangelism
Source: VOM Contacts

Jeremiah 10:6–7
Inasmuch as there is none like You, O Lord
(You are great, and Your name is great in might),
Who would not fear You, O King of the nations?
For this is Your rightful due.
For among all the wise men of the nations,
And in all their kingdoms,
There is none like You.

Conversions to Christianity have increased dramatically in Mali in recent months, due in part to the evangelistic work of Muslim Background Believers (MBBs) who have been trained at VOM-supported safe houses. “Not only are the safe houses a hiding place [for new converts running from Muslim families], but they are also places where MBBs can strengthen their faith,” a VOM worker said. “With their training … they become real national leaders who embark courageously on the evangelization of their compatriots and support the building of a true local or indigenous church.” These evangelists are the main distributors of Christian materials in the country. “That explains the explosion of conversions they are noting these days,” the VOM worker said. “The Muslim communities note now a real drop of their members.” Pray for the continued spread of the gospel in Mali and for the protection of these courageous believers.

Turkey—Visa Restrictions Hinder Missionaries
Source: VOM Contacts

Phillippians 3:14–16
I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Therefore let us, as many as are mature, have this mind; and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal even this to you. Nevertheless, to the degree that we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us be of the same mind.

The Turkish government recently tightened its visa regulations, hindering the work of foreign missionaries in the country. The new visa policy, which became effective on Feb. 1, 2012, allows 180-day multiple-entry visas, but visitors may spend only 90 consecutive days in the country and must wait 90 days between visits. Christian workers will have to leave Turkey every three months and remain outside the country for three months before returning. “We will only be able to spend half our time in Turkey,” wrote one worker. Since the beginning of February, the Turkish government has expelled a number of missionaries who had resident permits. Others who have left the country and tried to re-enter have been turned away at the border under the new visa regulations. Please pray that the Church in Turkey will continue to grow and develop mature leaders despite increasing government restrictions.

Burma—Evicted Christians Get New Homes
Source: VOM Contacts

Ephesians 3:16–17
that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love,

Forty families that were evicted from their villages because of their faith recently began construction on their new homes. After a local Buddhist monk drove the families, including about 300 people, out of their homes, VOM and a partner organization helped them buy land, pay taxes and begin construction on the first five houses. The Buddhist monk took offense when the believers refused to sponsor Buddhist activities. The situation remained tense for two months, until the monk eventually expelled them from their villages. Pray that these believers will remain rooted in Jesus Christ and that their new community will be a blessing.

-posted by Tim A. Blankenship

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