Charity was kidnapped by Boko Haram militants and married off to a harsh man who treated her abominably. After three years, Charity gave birth to a baby girl – two weeks later, she was rescued by the Nigerian army.
She was eventually reunited with her husband and older child in an IDP camp. It has been very hard for her husband to come to terms with what happened, and to accept Charity and her daughter.
But little by little, things are improving, thanks in part to the Open Doors trauma care workshop.
She says, “I think I have found healing here, peace of mind. There is also change in my husband. He is starting to like my daughter and now even picks her up and carries her around.
“I just want to thank God, firstly because he brought me out of those people's hands. I thank Him for reuniting me with my husband and children. I also thank God for people like you who pray for us.”
Alisa was working on a farm when she was attacked and raped by a group of Fulani militants. “I didn’t think I would survive,” she says. “But God in His mercies brought me this far. The last time I came to [an Open Doors] trauma care event, I went home feeling much encouraged. People noticed a difference in me.
“Honestly, Christian women in Nigeria, especially those in my community, are really going through persecution… I really want the world to know about this situation.
“If it had not been for the love of God and His comfort, many of us would have turned back to Islam. Pray that God will restore peace in our community. Not only in my community, but in Nigeria at large. Pray that God will bring peace, so that all this evil will stop.”
Christiana was heavily pregnant when she was attacked by Fulani herdsmen. She was rushed to hospital afterwards, where she gave birth to her baby.
Two years on, she still suffers from trauma and has a long journey ahead of her. But she testifies that the two Open Doors-sponsored trauma care events she has attended so far has been an immense help to her.
She says, “First of all, I want to thank God… I can remember when I came to the first programme, I went back feeling like a new person. I even felt forgiveness towards my attackers. I want to thank God for everyone who has contributed to the success of this programme. May God bless you richly.
“Please pray that God will bring peace to my land.”
Ladi had come home from school for the summer holidays when her village was attacked by Boko Haram. Her whole family was taken captive, and Ladi was married off to a Boko Haram fighter.
Shortly after giving birth to her son, Emmanuel, she managed to escape and ended up in an IDP camp. “Open Doors invited me to a trauma programme. It helped me very much… We got a lot of encouragement. I am so blessed. If I had not come for this programme, I do not know what my life would have been,” she says.
“Pray that God will help me stand strong for Him, so that at the end of the day God will say to me ‘well done, good and faithful servant, come and have your rest.’ So please pray that I will come back to the right track in my walk with God.”
Please pray also for the release of Ladi’s family, who are still in captivity.
Florence was just ten years old when she was attacked by a Fulani man.
“Honestly speaking, from that time, I have cried a lot and I couldn’t find anything that made me happy,” she says. “I refused to eat, and I lost weight.
“But then I came for the [trauma care] programme. After the first two days I started feeling happy and I felt as if everything was going away gradually.
“I painted tears in my self-portrait because while I was drawing, I thought about the everything that happened to me. But after I finished drawing, I totally forgot about the whole thing (for a while).
“Pray for me. When I hear the ‘mooing’ of cows of the Fulani herders, I feel my body begin to shiver. I want you to pray against the spirit of fear in me. Pray also for the resources that I can go back to school.”
Gambo was out getting firewood when she was approached by a Fulani man. When he realised that her husband was a Christian, he became hostile and began to attack her.
Gambo fell unconscious. When she awoke, she realised she had been raped. Her family took her to hospital, where she was treated for multiple injuries, including a broken arm which still has not healed. They are also still in court with the attacker.
Gambo attended the Open Doors trauma workshop where she painted her portrait. “While I was drawing this picture, I had mixed feelings,” she says. “First, I have feelings of anger and bitterness and that is why I drew myself without a smile. On the other hand, I have feelings of a joy, knowing that God loves me and will take care of me.
“Thank you for coming to us… I pray that God will renew your strength. We came here with bitterness… and honestly, we are leaving here happy.”
Solomi was attacked at her home by two Fulani men. When they demanded money, Solomi’s mother-in-law tried to divert their attention, but they caught Solomi, and one of the men raped her.
“Currently [my husband and I] do not feel safe to sleep in our home,” she says. “Every evening we go to the caves or the bush to hide until morning, whatever the weather. These Fulani men always rape women to conquer a community and so I want people in the world to know that this is what is happening here in Nigeria.
“Pray that God will continue to protect women and protect me even as I continue to stay in my community. Also ask God to give me peace in my family.”
Your letters and cards will have such an amazing, uplifting impact on our sisters in Christ! You can share the stories of these women and pray for them with your church using the Tears of Gold pack – find out more and order yours today.
The letter writing campaigns to these women end on 31 December 2019.
Some simple guidelines
- Get creative: Greeting cards, handmade cards, children’s artwork and postcards are great for recipients of all ages.
- Be clear: Write in simple English, or, if you can, in the recipient’s language. Keep your letter brief and print clearly.
- Be encouraging: Let them know that their Christian family is standing with them. Include one or two Bible verses. For verses in other languages, visit Bible Gateway.
- Show sensitivity: Don’t dwell on the recipient’s plight or share about the blessings of life in your country.
- Don’t waste envelopes: If you are posting more than one letter at a time, send them in one envelope.
- Pray: Ask God to inspire your words and pray that the person that you’ve written to will be encouraged.
1. Do not mention Open Doors in your letters.
2. If writing a postcard, please send it in an envelope and do not write Open Doors’ address on the postcard.
3. You may provide your name, but do not provide your full address.
4. Do not criticise a country’s religion or religious extremists, its government, judicial system or political leaders.
5. Do not send money or make offers of help – we are not able to forward on your gift due to safety concerns, and a gift can cause issues to the recipient.