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02 September 2019

“She is alive”: an update on Leah Sharibu

The Nigerian Government have issued a statement with the assurance that Leah Sharibu is still alive and they are actively pursuing her safe release.

2 September 2019

Many of you have been faithfully praying for Leah Sharibu since she was taken by Boko Haram in February 2018. Thank you. Praise God, on 31 August the Nigeria Government confirmed that she was still alive. It is wonderful to have clarity on this point, but let’s keep praying.

Leah was 15 when she was kidnapped from her school. Over 100 of her classmates were also captured by Boko Haram, taken from the Government Girls Science and Technical College in the north-east of Nigeria. One girl died in captivity. All the others were released within a month, but Leah was kept because she refused to deny her faith in Jesus.

A photo of Leah, taken by her family before her abduction

When her classmates were released, Leah was able to pass on a message to her mother: “My mother, you should not be disturbed. I know it is not easy missing me, but I want to assure you that I am fine where I am. My God, whom we have been praying to with you, is showing Himself mighty in my trying moment. I know your words to me during our morning devotions: that God is very close to people in pain. I am witnessing this now. I am confident that one day I shall see your face again. If not here, then there at the bosom of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

On Saturday, a government spokesperson gave a statement saying that Leah was alive, and confirmed President Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment to her safe return. Garba Shehu, from the government’s media and publicity team, relayed assurances from their security agencies and said that ‘lines of communication remain open with the kidnappers, ISWAP, to secure the release of Leah Sharibu’.

Leah’s parents have urged Christians to keep praying for their daughter. Her mother, Rebecca, said “I know that all over the world believers are praying and advocating for the release of my daughter, but until now I haven’t seen my Leah. I want to plead that Christians do not get tired of praying for her, until she is returned.”

You can write to Leah’s parents, to encourage them that you are still praying for their daughter.

Please pray

  • Thank God that Leah is alive and that the Nigerian Government are committed to her release
  • That Leah will be able to return to her family and would heal from her trauma
  • That God would convict Leah’s kidnappers of their need of Him, and that they would repent and believe.

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