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Believers in hiding find support through Open Doors

Christians in Bangladesh have faced increased violence and harassment in recent weeks – please pray for our brothers and sisters as they pick up the pieces from these recent events.

BELIEVER IN HIDING WITH HIS FAMILY AFTER BEING BEATEN BY HIS BROTHER

Mizanur Rahman (25), a believer from a Muslim background, was having devotion with his family members in their home in Kurigram district, north Bangladesh on 3 August. As they were singing worship songs, his elder brother entered with some villagers. They were angry with him, saying, "You Christians are making trouble. We will beat you."

They dragged Mizanur out of the house, beating and torturing him. They also destroyed the house, including the family’s belongings. They told Mizanur and his family not to return home again, and that if they did, they would face far worse.

With help from an Open Doors partner, Mizanur tried to file a police case against the persecutors. But his brother threatened them that the situation would get worse for the family if he informed the police. As a result, they have not made the police report.

Mizanur and his wife (pictured with their children) are now in hiding; they feel frustrated and depressed. 

Mizanur and his young family.

Please pray for Mizanur and our partners as they look into his situation to see how we can help the family.

PLEASE PRAY:

  • For God’s protection over Mizanur and his family; pray that He will provide for them and that they will be able to overcome their frustration and depression over this situation 
  • For God’s wisdom for Open Doors partners looking into Mizanur’s situation, that they will be able to provide the help that Mizanur needs
  • That Jesus will reveal Himself to Mizanur’s brother and others who are intent on being hostile to Christians, that they will come to know Jesus as Lord.

INDIGENOUS BELIEVERS BECOMING HOMELESS BECAUSE OF LAND GRABBERS

Three pieces of land in a Christian village in Chittagong Hill Tribes, northeast Bangladesh, are in the process of being taken away by land grabbers. The victims are from the Tripura tribal indigenous people group.

They are not allowed to enter their land now – land where they have lived for generations. They are given a choice to move to neighbouring lands or become homeless. But a few years from now, these neighbouring lands will also be taken away.

These land grabbers are local political leaders and influencers, large organisations and government party officials – powerful individuals. Their victims, on the other hand, are from the low poorer classes, who are targeted because they lack the resources to fight against such powerful people. The situation is worse among religious minority groups such as Christians.

These individuals first show genuine interest in various projects to benefit the poor. They then lure them to release their lands with the promise to build factories, farms, resorts, etc. The final trap is sprung when they are enticed to borrow money from them with high interest rates.

Later on, they are asked to return the money. When they fail to return it, the money lenders take their land and cast them out. In most cases, force is used. They have no choice – if they don’t comply, their lives and the lives of their loved ones are at risk.

The issue of land grabbing has caused many indigenous people to become homeless. Even though this issue is not uncommon, most of the cases continue to remain hidden and undisclosed.

Thanks to your support, Open Doors works with local churches to support persecuted believers in Bangladesh through training, literature distribution, socio-economic development and providing relief to victims of persecution.

PLEASE PRAY: 

  • For wisdom and God’s guidance for these tribal believers on how to deal with those who are taking their land from them
  • That these hidden cases would come to light so that the government can pass laws and take action to protect the rights of these minority groups.