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House church leader kidnapped in Iraq

by Staff
July 25, 2011
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( - A house church leader has been kidnapped by Muslims in Duhok, Iraq. A young Iraqi girl recently told VOM contacts that Muslims broke into her home and took her father, Jamal.

Pastor Jamal works among the Shabak people -- a people who have Jewish roots and speak Arabic and Kurdish. It is suspected the militants targeted him for helping lead many Muslims to Christ.

Several weeks ago, the home of one of Jamal's recent converts was sprayed with machine gun fire. Many fear that the militants, possibly members of al Qaida, will not give Jamal any option of release but immediately kill him.

Throughout Iraq, Christians in environments of violence continue to face the agonizing choice of fleeing their homes or remaining in a climate of fear and pressure. Most Christians have left the country or have been forced to move from their hometowns due to continuous attacks, and it is estimated that less than half of a million Christians remain.

Despite threats against them, hundreds of Iraqi Christians in Kirkuk recently celebrated the opening of a new church -- the first to be built in eight years.

Pray that Jamal will be released and brought home safely. Pray that he will rest in the knowledge that the Good Shepherd is with him through his sufferings (Psalm 23). Pray that both he and his family will remain faithful to the Lord in this time of trial. Thank the Lord for the opening of the church in Kirkuk. Pray that the Church will continue to strengthen and grow, even amid the ongoing persecution.

To find out more about Iraqi Christians suffering for their faith, go to

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