Pakistan (MNN) — At number eight on Open Doors USA‘s World Watch List, Pakistan is one of the leading countries for Christian persecution. Believers have a constant target on their back, no matter the age or gender. There have been violent beatings, discrimination, and sexual assaults.
World Missionary Press (WMP) is reminding followers of Christ Who they need to look to in trying times.
An aid group recently told Fox News the Christian population in the Middle East is shrinking considerably, and could vanish altogether within the next decade or so. “Unless the global community gets involved, we will witness the loss of Christian witnesses in a land that is biblically significant,” Elijah Brown, executive Vice President for 21st Century Wilberforce, told Fox News.
Remaining believers in Pakistan are cautious about who they evangelize to, and often worship in secret, creating an atmosphere of isolation and loneliness.
Yet, despite the discouraging circumstances, Christians remain firmly planted and willing to stand up for their faith. WMP is helping fuel that fire by giving tools of guidance and encouragement.
Fanning the flames of faith
“We have a great opportunity in Pakistan even though it’s a country where Christians are marginalized,” WMP’s Helen Williams says. “There is persecution. It’s outward persecution and it’s difficult, but there is a strong Christian community that we are helping to support with literature. A lot of it is for strengthening their own faith.”
Williams adds the literature movement is particularly important in nations with persecution because it doesn’t just reach one person. Instead, WMP often sees a “one-to-one” distribution with Scripture booklets.
“It can be left somewhere. Someone can pick it up, put it in their pocket, maybe hide it, maybe put it away, maybe not even address it,” shares Williams.
“But, in a year or six months, it is still there. It is still as true as it was the day it was presented and it never changes because it’s the Word of God.”
Distributions and shipments of Scripture booklets to Pakistan can be tricky. Staff in the U.S. wait for the Pakistan coordinator to give the “okay” before they can send booklets. This may mean waiting long periods of time between each shipment.
Recently, WMP sent a container holding 721,000 pieces of literature, including Bible study books and evangelism booklets, to two different ministries partners.
“This will serve them for about a year and then we’ll be able to do it again,” Williams says.
Several of WMP’s ministry partners also work to provide for physical needs in emergencies, which goes hand-in-hand with Gospel outreach. WMP makes Scripture booklets designed for emergencies, such as the recent Pakistan earthquake, readily available.
“We’ve had so many times where the physical world has changed and people are desperate, and the care can come from believers,” Williams says.
“People realize that the Christians are the ones who are there right away to give aid, to help, to feed, and to care for them for the physical needs. And then, that opens the doors for showing Christ’s love and sharing His Word.”
Track the travel of WMP distributions going around the world. Pray they will arrive safely and be given to people who need it most. Pray religious persecution will diminish.