In 1947, the year of the Pakistan’s independence, the situation for Christians became more complicated as this country officially became a Muslim state. Christians in Pakistan suffer from institutionalized discrimination, and occupations that are regarded as low, dirty and derogatory are reserved for followers of Christ by the ruling authorities. Many Christians are poor and some are victims of bonded labor. There are middle-class Christians as well, but many are disregarded by society and persecuted. Larger denominations have some freedom for worship, but they are heavily monitored, and extremists regularly target them for attacks. In Pakistan, Christians are regarded as second-class citizens. The country’s laws concerning acting and speaking against Islam are disproportionately and often deceitfully applied against the Christian minority—making it difficult and dangerous to live out one’s faith in public. Forced marriages of very young Christian girls are becoming more commonplace and many in this situation are compelled to convert to the Islamic faith. Haroon Massey, our pastor in Lahore, the second largest city in Pakistan with a population of over 11 million people, has asked us to send out this urgent video prayer request. The situation has become almost intolerable for our brethren there and only the grace of God will see them through. Thank you for your heartfelt prayers for the brethren.
“For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God. Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.” (Ephesians 3:14-21)