USA (MNN) — Communities in Florida recently got an ISIS “wake-up call,” thanks to the combined efforts of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, university leaders, and local media.
“It’s critical for college students, in addition to the community-at-large, to learn about these modern-day atrocities. Raising awareness is the first step,” the director of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Southeast Regional Office, Sheri Zvi, told The Sun Sentinel.
Two panel discussions titled, “Exposing the Darkness: Perspectives on Mass Atrocities,” were held on the campuses of Florida Atlantic University and the University of Miami.
Community members saw the faces of people terrorized by ISIS in northern Iraq, as documented in photos and videos during a 2015 trip. They also heard stories evidencing genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and ethnic cleansing perpetrated by the Islamic State.
A similar event, though less graphic, is coming up on March 4 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Voice of the Martyrs USA spokesman Todd Nettleton says it’ll go beyond information.
“I think you’ll walk out of the room with a new heart to lift up those who are suffering for Christ.”
The “I Am N” Prayer Event
This night of prayer will feature untold stories of hope amid unbelievable hardship, of those who’ve been marked for death simply because they follow Christ.
Testimonies will shared, Nettleton explains, and there will be momentary pauses throughout the night for music — led by Travis Ryan, co-author of the worship song, “We Believe” — and prayer.
“What they’re asking us to pray for is that God will give them perseverance in the midst of persecution to serve Him well and to serve Him boldly, and [to] share the Gospel with the people around them,” shares Nettleton.
Prayers will be guided along several themes highlighted in VOM’s “I Am N” book, Nettleton explains. “[The book] identifies some of the qualities we see in these persecuted Christians: sacrifice, courage, joy, perseverance, forgiveness, and faithfulness.”
However, some of the most powerful prayers can spring from simply imagining yourself in the shoes of a persecuted brother or sister in Christ.
“All of us can put ourselves in that position and understand what a huge challenge it would be to forgive the person who’s beating you, to forgive the person who killed members of your family,” says Nettleton.
“We want to pray that they [persecuted Christians] will forgive those that are persecuting them…. That’s an incredible, supernatural thing that happens, that’s not a human response.”