Christian killed by childhood friends

By December 31, 2009

Pakistan (MNN) — On December 3, Pakistani Christian Patras Masih was gunned down by three of his childhood friends: Sohail Muhammad, Imran Muhammad, and Amir Muhammad. The murder occurred in Karol village, Punjab Province, Voice of the Martyrs-Canada reports.

Two days prior, the three men and another friend, Anees Mahammad, had asked Patras to obtain alcohol for them. Pakistan prohibits Muslims from purchasing or consuming alcohol.

Patras obeyed the men's request, but locally brewed liquor in Pakistan is often toxic. 14 Pakistanis have died from drinking toxic liquor in December alone. Unfortunately, Anees Mahammad was one of their number. He died on December 3.

The other three Muslims came to Patras' home and accused him of killing Anees deliberately. They said they would spare his life only if he turned away from Christianity and became a Muslim. According to Patras' father, Gulzar, they had pressured Patras to convert many times in the past, always without success.

Patras refused to convert on this day as well, and his friends shot him multiple times in the chest. "My son bravely refused to recant Christianity and clung to Christ," Gulzar said. "He bravely embraced martyrdom."

The local police have registered a murder case against the three men, who remained at large at last report. Pray for comfort, protection, and wisdom for the Christians of Punjab Province as they deal with this sad and difficult situation. 

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