In Nigeria, a Christian is killed for their faith every two hours; that’s 12 Christians a day and 360 Christians a month. About 4,650 Christians were killed in Nigeria for their faith between Oct. 1, 2020 to Sept. 30, 2021.
Opendoorsusa, an organisation that has been operating for 60 years to strenthen Christians said
over 360 million Christians live in places where they experience high levels of persecution and discrimination globally.
Nigeria led the world in Christians killed for their faith last year (Oct. 1, 2020 to Sept. 30, 2021) at 4,650, up from 3,530 the previous year, according to Open Doors’ 2022 World Watch List report. The number of kidnapped Christians was also highest in Nigeria, at more than 2,500, up from 990 the previous year.
The death of Deborah Emmanuel Yakubu (May 12), a 200-level student at Shehu Shagari College of Education in Sokoto, the capital of Sokoto state was one of the highlights of violent Christian persecution in Nigeria. She was was beaten, stoned to death and her body set on fire.
Her attackers have been arrested with Christians all over the world trusting God that justice will be served and relevant authorities in Nigeria assuring the world that justice will be served. A good number of Muslims in Nigeria from botto to top decry and condemned Ms Yakuba’s death but Christian leaders believe they are not doing enough and that often time it a lip service that oozes off over time.
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Opendoors says Nigeria accounted for nearly 80% of Christian deaths worldwide last year and the death toll once again makes Nigeria the world’s most violent place for Christians — for the second consecutive year.
Last year, 5,110 churches and other Christian buildings were attacked and 4,765 believers detained without trial, arrested, sentenced or imprisoned.
Studies show that Christians suffer violent persecution and attacks more than any religion in the world, with most of the persecutions and attacks coming from Muslim extremists. It is worthy of note that Muslim extremists also persecute and kill other Muslims, whom they extreme believe are not faithful enough, according to their extreme parameters.
Persecutions against Christians put them in dire states save for many organisations God uses to help them. In more than 60 countries, Open Doors is on the ground, bringing support and help, wherever we’re needed most. Working through local churches and Christians of every culture and language, we want to live out the command Jesus gave His followers: to be one.
Pastor Charles keith who runs Christian outreach in South Africa says Christians can do more to campaign against persecution and to support those who are persecuted. “It is an unfortunate thing that Christian persecution is rife and very fertile in Nigeria. Many countries in Africa look up to Nigeria as a leading Christian nation. I believe we need to invest much more to campaign and fight against Christian persecutions all over the world”.
Open Doors calls for volunteers who may want to support their work. “And when you support the work of Open Doors through prayer and giving, you can be there, too. If you want to learn more about the problem of persecution — and how to pray for your persecuted family, read the 2021 World Watch List, Open Doors’ annual ranking of the 50 most dangerous places for Christians. When Christians are persecuted, attacked, discriminated against and targeted because they follow Jesus, Open Doors is there”.
Open Doors Says:
“Today, persecution in Nigeria is—simply put—brutally violent, as Islamic extremist groups work to carry out their agenda to Islamize the world’s seventh-largest country. Leveraging the country’s political instability and poor economy, these groups have turned Nigeria and the surrounding Sahel region (Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Niger) into an epicenter for jihadist violence.
“Generally speaking, there is no single part of Africa that is spared of Islamist insurgency,” says Illia, Open Doors analyst for Nigeria. “The phenomenon—the issue of radicalism—is now expanding and gaining territories. Radical preaching and teaching continue to lead to hostility towards religious minorities, such as Christians.”
In Nigeria, people are living their lives under constant threat of attack from several main groups: Boko Haram, the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), Fulani militants and criminal gangs who kidnap and murder for ransom with few consequences”.