Pray for the believers of Russia.

By May 17, 2005

Russia (MNN)–Book of Hope tells us of an attack on their partner church, Work of Faith, in Izhevsk, Russia.

Last month, a group of masked special forces and plain clothes police officers began their ransacking and interrogations just as a service was ending.

The officers took all the believers into custody and held them outside the church during the search. Over half of them were then taken to police headquarters for interrogation. Some were held for as little as five hours, others for nearly twenty-four hours.

The attack seemed to have no connection to any current police investigation. More troubling, the questions asked during the interrogations focused not on legal matters, but on the church itself.

Church members were asked questions like, “What is your religion?” “Why are you a member of a cult?” and “Who brought you into this sect?”

Twelve men who live at the church’s residential rehab were eventually cited for not having properly registered with the city authorities, which is a minor administrative oversight. Everyone else was eventually freed with no action against them.

Please pray that God will protect the believers and strengthen their witness. The Izhevsk church is one of our most involved partners in Russia, and the Russian-language Book of Hope is printed in Izhevsk. As the church is critical to the Book of Hope ministry, please pray these attacks will cease.

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