Government pressure calls for creativity among Algeria’s believers

By April 3, 2024
Unsplash stock photo, Algeria

Algeria (MNN) — The president of Algeria, Abdelmadjid Tebboune, announced on March 21 that the nation’s next presidential election will be held September 7. Since 2019, the year Tebboune’s term in office began, Algeria’s government has pressured and shut down more than forty churches. 

Yet Algeria’s capital-C Church is far from crushed. 

“God’s churches are human beings, and they cannot be shut down,” says Yernathen*, a North African leader serving with A3.

A3, formerly Asian Access, North Africa

(Graphic courtesy of A3)

“They (the government) cannot prevent the Holy Spirit to work in people’s hearts. People are continuing to come to the Lord. Families and (a) number of our leaders are bringing people into fellowships in the homes in different places,” Yernathen says. 

He admits that most of the church buildings have been closed. For people who consider a building the only way to have church gatherings, this leaves them with little to no options. 

But there is a plan B, in which Yernathen says “just like the Acts of the Apostles, they have to meet wherever they find peace.” Sometimes that means private homes, and sometimes that means out in forests where there is greater freedom

The fact that churches have even received the government’s attention is encouraging to Yernathen in a country that is 97% Muslim

“To see the church, the Body of Christ, getting to a point where it disturbed the government and the government has to make a decision to see how they can regulate that, that means a lot. That means God is working,” he says. 

“There is a persecution, there is an oppression. But that joy that is overflowing covers the multitude of those persecution(s). It has furthered the kingdom of God, no matter how they persecuted the church.”

Yernathen asks for prayer for Algeria’s leaders facing immense pressure from the government and families. 

He also invites the Church of the West to share insights and experiences for the struggles Algerian churches are dealing with.  Those challenges include how to best counsel abused women as well as help Christians from Muslim backgrounds walk with the Lord despite the pressure of their culture. 

A3 is working to equip North African leaders with mentorship and resources for godly leadership. Would you prayerfully consider partnering with them? Learn more here




Header photo is a representative stock image in Algeria courtesy of Nasro Azaizia/Unsplash

Help us get the word out: