Afghanistan (MNN) — On this day two years ago, the United States ended its sloppy withdrawal from Afghanistan. Despite promises of a more moderate rule, Taliban leaders have imposed harsh measures since taking control.
“It’s not a very good time [in Afghanistan] because of the hopelessness, the fear. People are tired of Islam,” says Mina*, an Afghan Christian working with Global Catalytic Ministries.
The Taliban kicked girls out of the classroom. They’ve barred women from public spaces and cracked down on media freedoms. Earlier this year, officials banned women like Mina from the workplace.
“First, I was feeling sorry for myself. I cried for three weeks. [Then,] God’s grace opened my eyes,” Mina says.
In June, Taliban supreme leader Hibatullah Akhundzada described Afghanistan’s conditions as “comfortable” for women:
“Necessary steps have been taken for the betterment of women as half of society in order to provide them with a comfortable and prosperous life according to the Islamic Shariah… The status of women as a free and dignified human being has been restored and all institutions have been obliged to help women in securing marriage, inheritance and other rights.”
According to Amnesty International, Taliban rulers routinely enforce “a widespread, systematic attack on women and girls as policy.” Afghan women like 25-year-old Elaha Delawarzai endure horrific torture under the banner of Islamic rule.
“Yes, it’s bad for women; we suffer a lot. But it’s also amazing because, in every bad thing that happened concerning the kingdom of God, I have seen good things happening,” Mina says.
“It’s not [like] God lost control.”
Mina can no longer hold an official position due to the Taliban’s mandate. Yet hope remains. The restrictions led to new opportunities.
“I have more time to visit people and talk to people; I’m having more people come to my house,” she says.
Pray for strength as Afghan Christians like Mina meet with new believers for home Bible studies and discipleship. Send support through Global Catalytic Ministries.
“[Pray] for God to help us see things through His eyes and not get distracted [by the] pain around us, but have our eyes fixed on Him,” Mina requests.
Header and story images courtesy of Global Catalytic Ministries.