Afghan Christians persevere one year after Taliban takeover

By August 15, 2022

Afghanistan (MNN) — On August 15, 2021, the Taliban claimed control of Afghanistan’s capital amid the United States’ chaotic troop withdrawal. The advance came as no surprise to those watching, as major cities fell to Taliban rule throughout the summer.

Watch this powerful video marking the anniversary of Afghanistan’s fall.

Last month, senior staff in U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration voiced concern about the August anniversary. Many people view the Afghanistan withdrawal as “one of Biden’s biggest failures,” and its commemoration could shake voter confidence as midterm elections approach.

Reports like this one from the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations add fuel to the fire.

“A lot of people have forgotten about Afghanistan, and the decimation that has happened since the American pull out,” says Reza*, a believer working with Global Catalytic Ministries.

“There’s not a lot of [NGOs or] people who care left (in Afghanistan).”

Today, most Afghans rely on help from foreign aid organizations to survive. Taliban authority led to diplomatic isolation, and the country’s economy tanked. It’s no longer in “free fall,” economists say, but Afghans still cannot access daily essentials.

Testimony on the ground: “A woman and her children moved to the city and have been having a hard time. She was so happy to receive these materials. The previous night, she had a dream that God would help her. God was in her dream and told her, ‘Don’t worry. I am with you. I will help you. Not just in the city, I am with you every place you go. Just don’t worry, and don’t fear. I am with you.’ The Lord was already speaking, and today just proved that we are workers for Him.”
(Photo, caption courtesy of Global Catalytic Ministries)

Read our full Afghanistan coverage here.

Hope for Afghanistan

Working through a network of underground churches, GCM delivers relief aid and helps people escape. More about that here. “We’ve brought out thousands of people,” Reza says.

“It’s become [increasingly] difficult and more expensive, but praise the Lord, He’s given us new avenues to bring people out.”

Afghanistan’s future is bleak. Yet, hope remains. Underground church leaders are staying put to share Christ and make disciples.

“The people of Afghanistan are so tired; Islam has decimated them and the Taliban has controlled them in such wicked ways. They’re looking for any sign of hope,” Reza says.

“Their only hope is Jesus.”

Connect with GCM here to help. The ministry reports the following on its Facebook page regarding Afghanistan Relief Work:

We set out with an initial goal of $500k for Afghanistan relief. We ended up raising $4.5 million. Because of this ground swell of support, we expanded our Afghanistan relief vision to include a 3-year “Restore and Rebuild” plan. Since we have worked in Afghanistan for several years and planted around 100 churches there, we were able to mobilize our existing network of trusted leaders to deliver resources to believers in Afghanistan.

“God is moving so powerfully; we want to start underground churches who make disciples in the darkest places on the earth. With your prayer support and with your generosity that really can happen,” Reza says.

“Afghanistan is still the second-fastest growing church in the world, even with the Taliban in power. Imagine if, one day, we hear 10 percent of the Afghan population has turned to Jesus.”





In the header image, U.S. Air Force loadmasters and pilots assigned to the 816th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron, load passengers aboard a U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster III in support of the Afghanistan evacuation at Hamid Karzai International Airport (HKIA), Afghanistan, Aug. 24, 2021. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Donald R. Allen)