Renewed Muslim Jihad threatens ministry

By December 4, 2008

Nigeria (MNN) — Muslims have renewed battle efforts in
their decades-long dispute with Christians in Nigeria.

Plateau State, located
in central Nigeria, is on the front line between the Muslim-dominated northern
region of Nigeria and the predominately-Christian south. Jos, the capital city
of Plateau State, has recently been the location of many violent attacks. 400
have been confirmed dead, and attacks have been centered on the burning of
churches and Christian homes.

An indigenous mission agency, Grace Foundation
Inland Mission, requests prayer for believers in Jos. Grace Foundation reports
that pastors and believers were among the 400 killed, contributing to the
belief that attacks were targeted at Christians.

"They claim it is a reaction to a local government election,
but we all know that it is preconceived," said the group's international
director, Andrew Abah, in an e-mail received by the home office. "Election has
nothing to do with burning down of churches, killing of pastors and other
Christians, and massive looting of Christian shops."

Some government officials say radicals are using violent
religious oppression to disguise a political ploy.

One of Grace Foundation's missionaries was taken captive by
Muslim extremists, but after 10 hours he managed to escape to safety. He is currently staying with a fellow missionary. Thousands of others who have been displaced by the violence are now taking shelter in public
buildings such as police stations and hospitals.

"There is a 24-hour curfew but [it's] not fully adhered to
by the Muslims," Abah reported. "They are quietly entering into houses and
killing people."

In addition to their missionary work among
regional unreached people groups, Grace Foundation also has a children's home for orphans and
vulnerable children.

The staff moved children from the Unreached Children Home
(UCH) to a safer location due to fear of becoming the militants' next target.

Shortly after the move, Muslims marched to the Grace International mission base to set fire to the facility. In God's providence, however, they were deterred by Christians until the military arrived and intervened. The government has deployed almost 300 armed
soldiers to control the violence.

Please pray for Christians in Nigeria. Pray for the preservation of Grace Foundation and for an end to these attacks.

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