How many Christians are there in Brunei?
There are around just over 42,000 Christian in Brunei – just nine per cent of the country’s population.
How are Christians persecuted in Brunei?
The recent implementation of Sharia (Islamic law) – which governs non-Muslims as well as Muslims – has increased insecurity and fear among Brunei’s small number of Christians.
Converts from a Muslim background can be disowned by families, separated from children, forcibly married or made to attend Islamic rehabilitation programmes. If their faith is widely known, the authorities will also intervene to pressurise converts to renounce Christianity, because leaving Islam is considered illegal.
Whilst traditional Christian communities can worship relatively freely, all church activities are monitored by the authorities and surrounding community, and church leaders are warned against doing outreach or becoming too public.
They must register not as a church but as a secular entity, and are required to submit their financial and operational reports to the government every year.
“Believers are not willing to take risks. Parents choose not to send their children to public church events either. Some of my friends have even said they don’t see a place for themselves in the church anymore.” ELORA, A CHRISTIAN IN BRUNEI
What’s life like for Christians in Brunei?
Elora* grew up in a Christian household but first truly encountered Jesus aged 21. Today she serves the young adults in her local church, but is saddened that many of her Christian peers have converted to Islam after marrying a Muslim, or hold back their passion for Jesus following the implementation of Sharia (Islamic law) in 2019.
“My heart beats faster when it comes to Brunei,” Elora says. “There is a burden I can’t explain. Pray for the salvation of people in Brunei. Pray for the Sultan, the government and authorities.”
*Name changed for security reasons
How can I help Christians in Brunei
Please keep praying for your brothers and sisters in Brunei. Your gifts and prayers make an enormous difference to those following Jesus no matter the cost.
Open Doors raises prayer support for persecuted believers in Brunei.
Heavenly Father, give our brothers and sisters in Brunei supernatural strength and boldness in those moments when pressure to renounce You is greatest. May their perseverance and transformed lives powerfully touch those who’d persecute them. Encourage pastors in their ministries serving Your people. Reveal Yourself afresh to young Christians – may they see the joy of staying faithful to You, despite the challenges it may bring. We join with Elora in asking ‘that the glory of God will shine in Brunei’. Amen.