In a move to protect the persecuted church in Muslim nations—and to intercede for the salvation of the Muslim world—Open Doors USA is launching a prayer campaign during the 30 days of Ramadan.
From July 20 until Aug. 18 Muslims around the world will be observing the Muslim month of Ramadan. It is a time when most Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset during the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar. Most Muslims view this as a time to practice humility and submissiveness to Allah.
“During the season of Ramadan let us first lift up in prayer our brothers and sisters in Christ who live in Islamic-dominated nations; strengthening them, empowering them, comforting them and encouraging them,” says Carl Moeller, president and CEO of Open Doors USA. “There are millions of Muslims who have never experienced real peace and joy in knowing a loving God and having Jesus as their Savior.”
Ramadan can be a difficult time for marginalized Christians. Often persecution is heightened because Christians do not fast or observe the Muslim traditions of Ramadan. They can be targeted by their government, community and family.
“Muslims treat Ramadan with reverence,” shares one Christian in an Islamic country. “They tend to be more serious and sensitive about Islamic beliefs and practices. So during Ramadan we (Christians) need to be more careful in carrying out our church activities, especially in conducting seminars, training and other programs.”
Nine of the top 10 countries on the Open Doors 2012 World Watch List of the worst persecutors of Christians have Islamic governments. Those nine countries are Afghanistan (2), Saudi Arabia (3), Somalia (4), Iran (5), Maldives (6), Uzbekistan (7), Yemen (8), Iraq (9) and Pakistan (10).
Open Doors is offering a 30-day prayer calendar available for Christians in the West to pray for Muslim Background Believers living in countries where Christians don’t have the freedom to worship Jesus Christ. The calendar features truths from the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-12) while offering daily prayers for Muslims.