The Persecuted Church

Map source: Open Doors

The freedom of religion enjoyed by many Christ-followers around the world is not known to millions of others, especially those in an area known as the "10-40 Window" (10 degrees north and 40 degrees south of the equator, predominately in Africa and Asia).

Several Evangel missionaries currently work with or have worked with people in this region in a number of capacities. To protect them and the people with whom they work, it is not possible to provide details here.

About Persecution

"Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or beliefs in teaching, practice, worship and observance."

Article 18, Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Christian Persecution is any hostility, experienced from the world, as a result of one’s identification with Christ. From verbal harassment to hostile feelings, attitudes and actions, believers in areas with severe religious restrictions pay a heavy price for their faith. Beatings, physical torture, confinement, isolation, rape, severe punishment, imprisonment, slavery, discrimination in education and in employment, and even death are just few examples they experience on a daily basis.

According to The Pew Research Center, over 75% of the world’s population live in areas with severe religious restrictions. Many of these people are Christians. Also, according to the United States Department of State, Christians in more than 60 countries face persecution from their governments or surrounding neighbors simply because of their belief in the person of Jesus Christ.

Source: Open Doors (This text and the map above)


Local Activities

College Church in Wheaton holds a prayer meeting for the persecuted church each Friday at Noon in the Commons building.


Below are a few websites for organizations involved in action and pray for the persecuted church, listed in alphabetical order. You will find valuable resources on each site for action, compassion, and a very strong emphasis on intercessory prayer.

BarnabasAid—"hope and relief for the persecuted church"

BarnabasAid seeks to make known specific situations and connect them with believers who can bring action, financial support, and prayer. The map at the left, found at the Global Map Overview page shows the location of news stories about persecuted Christians around the world.

International Day of Prayer for the persecuted church (IDOP)
a Sunday in November calling the church worldwide to intercessory prayer. The theme for 2013 (November 10) was "Free to Follow."

IDOP is a coordinated worldwide event, with websites for specific regions and countries. The U.S. site ( lists a number of organizations serving the persecuted church. The main website provides resources for use in the annual day of prayer.

Open Doors—"serving persecuted Christians worldwide"

"Open Doors works in the world's most oppressive countries, strengthening Christians to stand strong in the face of persecution and equipping them to shine Christ's light in these dark places." The organization is an outgrowth of the work of "Brother" Andrew (so named to preserve his anonymity), also known as "God's smuggler" for his work taking Bibles across closed borders.

Voice of the Martyrs (—"a global perspective on the persecution of God's children"

Voice of the Martyr's mission is "Serving the persecuted church through practical and spiritual assistance while leading Christians in the free world into fellowship with them."

World Evangelical Alliance—"a global ministry working with local churches around the world to join in common concern to live and proclaim the Good News of Jesus in their communities."

As part of its support for evangelicals worldwide, WEA is actively involved in religious liberty issues through the Religious Liberty Commission and initiatives that address a number of current concerns, such as human trafficking.