Islam making huge gains in Sierra Leone

By June 9, 2004

Sierra Leone (MNN) — Civil war in Sierra Leone forced many Christians from the country. The 14 years of violence has decimated the economy, health care and moral climate. With the limited number of Christian organizations helping to rebuild the country, it’s opened the doors to Islam.

Christian Resources International’s is concerned about this. CRI’s Bryon Morgan says, “The UN, two years ago, to combat rebel forces and end the civil war, deployed 17,500 peace keepers mostly from Pakistan, Bangladesh and India. While this is a good thing, at the same time, everywhere the UN forces were deployed, mosques were built. The last two years the count is a little over 9,000 mosques.” That’s in a country a little smaller than South Carolina.

Since foreign missionaries have been evacuated from the country, it has left the majority of the work in Sierra Leone to about 2,000 churches. Morgan says these churches aren’t equipped and CRI is trying to help them. “CRI was petitioned to lend support to the Evangelical Fellowship of Sierra Leone and supply the national Sierra Leone Christians and churches with material,” says Morgan. So, they’re partnering with these churches to get these materials distributed.

According to Morgan, this material is a great need right now. He says, “There are no Christian printing presses in or around Sierra Leone. And so, the church has no printed material to teach or train with, and the pastors have no curriculum or Bible study aids.” Morgan says they’ve been able to provide hundreds of libraries, but it hasn’t come close to meeting the need.

CRI is in need of multiple kinds of material. Text books, medical books, Christian literature, business books — anything that can physically help the people of Sierra Leone become self sufficient. As they’re able to help, it provides opportunities to share the Gospel. Morgan says that’s exactly what the Muslims are doing and many there are responding. “They are responding to those who are socially and economically supporting them. For them the Islamic governments and the Islamic funding from North Africa are supplying them money. And, when you supply them money, you buy their allegiance.”

Leave a Reply