Afghanistan is second to North Korea as most hostile to Christians. There is not a single Christian church building in the country, although there are over 48,000 mosques. Afghans who convert to Christ are considered traitors to their country and can be sent to a psychiatric hospital or face a death sentence for apostasy. In addition, relatives who forsake Islam are often murdered by Muslim family members in “honor killings.” As a result, many Christians must flee the country in order to escape persecution. Please pray for the Gospel’s advance within the spiritual darkness of Afghanistan and for special grace for believers who follow Christ at great cost.
The government of Afghanistan has written radical Islamic sharia into its constitution and is now considered the fifth worst nation for persecuting Christians. Home to some 48,000 mosques, one cannot find a single Christian church building in Afghanistan, and Afghan believers number less than 5,000. Afghans who convert to Christ are considered to be traitors to their country and face a death sentence for apostasy. Persecution also comes from Muslim family members, who do not hesitate to perform “honor killings” on relatives who forsake Islam. One Muslim man offered a Western news reporter $20,000 to tell him the location of his brother-in-law, who was in hiding after becoming a Christian. Last November the Taliban murdered a South African believer and his two teenage children, who had been serving as humanitarian workers for the last twelve years. Please pray for the Gospel’s advance within the spiritual darkness of Afghanistan and for special grace for believers who follow Christ at great cost to their lives.
Today marks the fifth anniversary of the massacre of the Nuristan Eye Camp team in northeastern Afghanistan. It was the deadliest attack on aid workers in Afghanistan in recent history. Among the ten who were killed was a dear friend, Cheryl Beckett. Cheryl was a brave, gifted, prayerful woman full of “love and good works”; and even in the midst of many years of hard ministry in a war zone, she kept her good sense of humor. By her life and by her death, Cheryl put Calvary Love on display for the Afghan people. As a tribute to her, here are Tim Keesee's journal entries from 2010 reflecting later on Cheryl’s death and that of the other brave men and women of the Nuristan team.