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christian persecution

  • Turkey deports almost 200 Protestants since 2018

    Header photo courtesy of Samueles on Pixabay.

    Turkey (MNN) — Since 2018, Turkey has forced nearly 200 Protestant clergy and their families to leave the country. Intelligence officials claim they pose a security risk but do not say how. The expulsions began after the U.S. sanctioned Turkey for imprisoning an American pastor.

  • New Christians in Bangladesh face persecution from Muslim families

    Header photo courtesy of TheDigitalArtist on Pixabay.

    Bangladesh (MNN) — Christians make up just 0.3 percent of the population of Bangladesh. And it’s difficult for that number to grow.

  • God moves mightily in Asia despite pandemic horrors

    In the header image, a masked tourist walks on an empty street during COVID-19 pandemic lockdown in Singapore. (Photo courtesy of Victor He/Unsplash)

    Asia (MNN) — The first COVID-19 case surfaced in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. Several variants and a pandemic classification later, the battle seems never-ending.

  • Freedoms in U.S., but Persecution Elsewhere

    remembering the persecuted

    My friends, 

    I want to wish you all a very happy Independence Day this weekend! What a joy for those of us who are Americans to celebrate the freedoms we have in this world.

    As one who works globally, I'm well aware of these freedoms. Every day, I seem to hear about the Persecuted Church. And we even have friends right now whose children are in custody. And it deeply impacts you when you know these things. It really makes you grateful for these United States—that we get to have these freedoms.

  • Camellia Flower and the Gospel

    00399 00689As Silk and I are saying farewell to our home of the last 4.5 years, we have visited our friends and colleagues in several places. We wish we’d have time to see everyone but the coronavirus has limited our options. One of the places we were able to visit was the sites of the “Hidden Christians” in Japan. By now you have heard of the book and film “Silence” which reveals some of their story. They went through horrendous persecution for their faith and the stories we heard of their resilience, perseverance, and faithfulness despite the awful treatment and their ultimate sacrifice were sobering and inspiring...

  • Your gift—DOUBLED—could help reduce the jail time of pastors in Asia

    digital platform fuelingrevival may2020 800x800 b 1$200,000 matching gift will help Asian Access provide secure online tools for persecuted leaders

    "We are facing shutdowns and jail time almost daily here. We are reluctant to share with the news because of the repercussions it may entail. Please pray for us."

    That quote is from an Asian Access national director in one of A2’s most dynamic country movements.  Please do pray for them as...

  • Criminal charges brought against online churches in China

    China (MNN) — Concerning accounts are pouring from China that have nothing to do with a physical virus. Many local believers are reporting crackdowns on the underground Church’s digital presence in China in the form of arrests and criminal charges. Restrictions on digital Christian content are nothing new; some local believers already change their websites and programming on a near-daily basis. However, the COVID-19 pandemic changed the game for two reasons. First, the online Chinese Church has experienced explosive growth since...

  • India’s Hindu Rashtra: “a lot more persecution in the days ahead”

    India (MNN) — There’s an adage as old as time: “While the cat’s away, the mice will play.” It implies group laziness or misbehavior when an authority figure is not present. A similar scenario is taking place in India right now. While police focus on COVID-19 restrictions, Christian Post reports, Hindu extremists are launching more attacks on Christians. The first half of 2020 saw 135 cases, but experts say the real number is probably much higher.“ Persecution has become a reality in most of rural and semi-rural India. But...

  • Providing Secure Tools for Persecuted Leaders - $200k Matching Challenge

    Helping the Persecuted Church by providing online tools for leaders

    Needed: a secure digital platform providing leaders with a safe place

    Give toward a match so our brothers and sisters under persecution can enjoy meeting, like we do, by video conferencing without fear of government intervention. Asia is still reeling from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our friends are especially suffering from the pain of isolation—and none feel it more than those who live in countries where Christians are persecuted, where they cannot trust their governments to...

  • Needed: a secure digital platform providing leaders with a safe place

    digital platform fuelingrevival may2020 800x800 b 1$200,000 matching gift will help Asian Access build a secure digital platform to fuel revival

    I trust you are doing well as we all continue facing the coronavirus challenges. I’m writing you to ask you to give toward a match so our brothers and sisters under persecution can enjoy meeting, like we do, by video conferencing without fear of government intervention. Asia is still reeling from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our friends are especially suffering from the pain of isolation—and none feel it more than those who live in countries where Christians are persecuted, where they cannot trust their governments to give them accurate information about COVID-19. As in North America (and in Japan where I live), churches in persecuted countries are connecting by video conferencing . . . for now. But it’s just a matter of time before governments shut them down and go after the church leaders. What these countries need is an ultra-secure digital platform that will allow them to meet, worship, and have fellowship away from the prying eyes of their governments.

  • Pastor Wang Yi sentenced to prison without public trial

    China (MNN) — Pastor Wang Yi of China’s well-known Early Rain Covenant Church was sentenced to nine years in prison last week. The Chinese government never held a public trial for Pastor Wang, but charged him behind closed doors with “inciting subversion of state power” and “illegal business activities.” Pastor Wang was arrested in December 2018 along with several other church members. Prior to his arrest, Pastor Wang prepared a six-page statement refuting what he guessed the government would charge him with as the leader of a popular underground church.{addthis off}

  • Progress on $167k Match to Empower Persecuted Leaders (10 Days Left)

    joe screengrabHi Friends! I want to thank you for your support this year. We really appreciate you. You may remember that this past year one of our leaders came up to me and asked for help. You may know that 10 of the 16 countries in which Asian Access works is facing persecution and pressure, and they've come to me and said: “Joe, the groups that are helping us, we love them. But we think the equipping of leaders could be better for those of us who are facing persecution. Would you go and see if we can strengthen this part of the church across Asia.” Well, I went and met with all the different groups that help with persecution today, and they're willing to partner with us. In fact, next March, they've invited me to join them for a big gathering where we're going to talk about how we can collaborate and strengthen one another and work together to empower the persecuted Church. And it just so happens that we have a matching grant that goes towards that project. As we come to the end of 2019, we have a $167,000 matching challenge. We need to raise that amount by December 31st. Every dollar raised between now and then will be doubled...{addthis off}

  • Letter from a Persecuted Leader

    persecutedchurch4 600x190

    "I especially want to thank Asian Access for standing with me at this hard time. My Asian Access friends helped me greatly during this trial. We each experience this opposition, and so we are there for each other."

    A Letter from My Friend, an A2 Alumnus

    Just before Thanksgiving, I received his letter from a graduate of Asian Access. He writes: "Dear President Joe, Greetings in the Name of Christ. As you know, we continue to face many hardships...{addthis off}

  • China counting its Christians, ministries adapt

    China (MNN) – Rumors that China’s Central Government ordered its towns to monitor and count Christians appear to be true. More specifically, Asian Access’ Joe Handley says, “What we’re hearing is they’re following up and wanting to get actual names of those who believe in God. It’s not just Christianity; it includes Buddhism, Taoism.  It’s spanning the scope of everything, including...{addthis off}

  • Empowering the Persecuted Church

    persecutedchurch3 600x190

    $167,000 Matching Gift will Help Asian Access design Persecution Curriculum

    “Joe, what is being done is not enough. Given the fruitfulness of Asian Access leadership approach, can we add this component to our overall leader development?”

    This is what the leader of one of our countries asked as he begged me to better empower leaders as they face increasing levels of persecution. This is someone who is deeply connected to the groups who work to help the Persecuted Church. Indeed, persecution is on the rise! Ten of the 16 countries Asian Access works in face persecution. We’ve seen recent reports from India, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam. In the first few months of the year, the same types of things have occurred in China as well.... {addthis off}

  • Why would you even consider doing Asian Access in your country if you know your life is in danger?

    00346 00575 blurOne of the highlights of our recent Global Leaders’ Summit as meeting our latest coordinators for Asian Access in new countries. In this case, the pastor pictured here we’ll call Pastor S to protect his identity as he serves in a country that needs to remain unidentified for security reasons. Pastor S faces ongoing pressures and real-life threats. In fact, recently he was asked, “Why would you even consider doing Asian Access in your country if you know your life is in danger?” – He said, “It’s too important that we equip our leaders to not face this kind of threats. We must proceed and if I die, I die.”... {addthis off}

  • A Personal Message from Sri Lanka

    flag of Sri LankaDear Friends, Church was different for us today. A week after the Easter bombings that devastated our nation, and ongoing threats of a second wave of attacks, the island is under high-security surveillance. A curfew has been imposed every night allowing the security forces to check every house. As they do so they continue to uncover more bombs and plans of the extremist terrorist group. We are still quite shaken by the drastic turn of events in our little nation. Just a week ago Sri Lanka was a peaceful tropical Island, dubbed the top tourist destination of 2019 (according to Lonely Planet). Today, all Christian churches were advised against meeting in our usual places of worship. Our network of churches across the Island met in... {addthis off}

  • Coming alongside Sri Lanka & other persecuted countries

    sri.st anthonys.jc (photo courtesy Joshua Clayton)A Tragic Easter in Sri Lanka

    By now you have seen the tragic news about Easter Sunday from Sri Lanka. 3 churches were bombed during Easter services as well as three prominent hotels, one safe house and another location where police were stationed. At least 258 people have died and more than 500 people have been wounded. Later I learned that two Islamic centers also saw attacks in the northern part of the island. Our colleagues heard the bombs going off during their church services: "We heard of the explosions during our Easter service. We were on lockdown but proceeded the service and sent the believers home ASAP. We were unaware of the gravity of the situation… It is difficult to understand, but we are holding on to God. We are grieving with our people. We are safe. But we are absolutely devastated. Scared. And overwhelmed." They thanked us for praying and asked us to specifically pray that this act of terror could be a turning point in their nation... {addthis off}

  • Increasing Persecution: How You Can Help

    WWL2019 Map 700px

    Every time I turn around these days there are reports of increasing persecution of believers and churches in various countries. It seems that persecution is on the rise as nationalism becomes the political whim of the moment. 10 of the 16 countries Asian Access serves have seen persecution expand. Here are a few glimpses from just this past week: “One of our Bible college alumni is beaten by people, accusing of converting people while he was returning with friends helping people with relief material.”... In another Asian nation, our national director shared this... {addthis off}

  • The Pressure is On: Please Pray!

    ODM chinaPrayer requested as persecution increases

    Reports are coming out every few days about the persecuted church and it appears that a new wave of this type of pressure is rising. Just yesterday, several news stories released about China and these are just the tip of the iceberg:

    And, I can verify these and many more. Recently, I...{addthis off}

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