The persecution of Christian women and girls around the world is hidden, complex and violent. They are vulnerable for both their gender and their faith.
Leading up to International Women’s Day on 8 March, we’ll be sharing some stories of those who’ve been persecuted simply because they are Christian women. The aim of Open Doors’ See. Change. campaign is that every woman who is persecuted for both her faith and gender is seen, heard and empowered to reach her God-given potential.
Amina’s story: Widowed and kidnapped
Amina, her husband and their five children were all together one evening when Islamic militants Boko Haram attacked their village.
“They entered my house. They tied my husband and three of my children,” she remembers. “They asked them to denounce Christ – and they refused. My husband died and two of my kids were taken to the hospital.” Her sons were in hospital for a month, but miraculously both were healed.
Amina suffered severe post-traumatic stress and depression after her husband’s murder. She experienced what many Christian women do if their husband has been killed – increased vulnerability, less protection and a harder time to earn for her family.
Appallingly, this wasn’t the end of Amina’s trauma. A few years later, she and 10 other women were kidnapped by Boko Haram and held for eight months. Amina received three gunshot wounds in the ambush.
“They used to send their Imam to come and preach to us, and after the preaching, they would ask: ‘Who amongst you wants to denounce Christ?’ By His grace we all joined our hearts, we are not going to denounce Christ. For us to live is Christ, but to die is gain.
“We stayed there in hardship, trauma, hunger and fear. I always told God: ‘God, I don’t know the devil. It’s You that I know. So, take charge.’”
After many negotiations, the women were finally freed. Open Doors partners have helped Amina and others with trauma care, which has made an enormous difference to her life. She and her family are also receiving financial help during the pandemic.
“Open Doors helped me realise the love of God, most especially through this trauma healing and the other help, because were it not for God’s love, I couldn’t have gotten all these things. You showed love by caring for those that are suffering, those that are in trauma, those that are in trouble.”
Dear Lord, thank You for the way You are using Open Doors partners to help heal Amina and many others like her from their trauma. Please continue to show Your deep, deep love to all Your daughters, protect those in danger because of their gender and faith, and change the hearts of those who seek to attack Christian women.
You can help women like Amina See. Change. by contacting your MP, and asking them to ensure that faith is recognised as a vulnerability in gender-based violence.
You can help persecuted Christian women around the world See. Change.
Your support helps persecuted Christians continue to courageously follow Jesus.
Together, we can reach those where persecution hits hardest.