Arrests in Nepal Mark Growing Persecution
For several months, Nepal has been debating an anti-conversion bill in Parliament. The law stipulates,
"Preaching, testifying, and counselling people for religious matter and leading them to new religion other than their forefathers’ traditions is considered as crime. The punishment is 5 years imprisonment as well as Nrs 50000/ fine for those who break the Law."
Although the law has not officially been passed, Christians are already feeling the impact. Along with other Christians, several of Harvest Bridge's pastors have been brought in for questioning, or have had their churches ransacked.
Persecution is increasing in Nepal, and the situation calls for deep prayer. Pray for strength and joy in the Nepalese Body of Christ, and praise God for what He will do through this opposition.
As one of our pastors put it, "This is a good sign that we have persecution. This means we are doing what we are supposed to. We are frightening the Evil One."
UPDATE - June 13th
On June 13th, another pastor was arrested and is in the same police custody with the other seven brothers and sister. He was apparently arrested because of his faith in Christ and for sharing the Gospel. He is a local pastor and the secretary of the Christian society in that region. Please continue to pray for all involved.
On June 9th, seven Christians were arrested in Charikot (Bhimeshwar), in Northeastern Nepal.
In a press release, the Federation of National Christian Nepal stated that the accused were from the organization, Teach-Nepal.
The statement says that the individuals were, "falsely accused of evangelizing while they were returning after their program on 9th June, 2016 from Dolakha, Charikot...they were conducting earthquake related awareness programs in various schools as per their organization's objective."
Our Nepal lead pastor and coordinator, Samuel*, who knows them, says,
"Please uphold these six brothers and one sister in your prayers. They have been arrested and taken into custody by authorities. They were falsely charged of converting school children to Christianity.
We firmly stand with them and pray that they shall not lose their heart, and will keep the faith and be His witness wherever they are taken.
The chain shall of course be broken and they will be released soon...by seeing this act we know that the fire of revival is going to be kindled in this country soon. And all will see the glory and experience the Spirit of the Lord God Almighty engulfing this entire nation.
Of course the victory is His and always will be.
The so-called anti-conversion bill is still stuck in parliament, and the government is planning to persecute Christians. This is just the beginning.
We are very much aware of these threats when sharing the Good News. If they find any pamphlets or tracts distributed by us, then that becomes reason enough for the government to arrest us. They will accuse us of trying to convert people to Christianity.
The tough days are coming in Nepal but we continue to preach at any cost.
'Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.' ~Matthew 5:11-12
Please remember us in your prayers. Thank you."
*Name changed for safety