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Philippines (Mindanao)
Hostile

Overview:

In the Muslim-majority southern island region of Mindanao, Islamist groups and the government have engaged in a longstanding conflict over the Islamists’ desire to form an independent Muslim state. Groups such as Abu Sayyaf and Maute have pledged allegiance to the self-proclaimed Islamic State (ISIS) to gain financial help and recruit foreign fighters. Islamic extremists routinely threaten Christians and have driven many out of Muslim-majority areas. Many pastors and other believers have been killed. However, a significant number of Christians remain in these areas as a bold witness for Christ.

Major Religions:

Most people in the greater Philippines are Christians, but the Mindanao region includes areas with a significant Muslim majority and where Islamic extremism has a strong influence.

Persecutor:

In the Mindanao region, Christians are attacked by both Sunni Muslims and communist rebels.

What It Means To Follow Christ In Philippines (Mindanao):

In the Mindanao region, attacks on Christians are sporadic and unpredictable, creating an environment of constant tension for Christians. Government forces usually respond when conflicts occur; however, Christians’ rights are not protected in some areas where the government has ceded control to Islamists. Churches are legal, and graduates of Bible schools in the Mindanao region boldly return to share the gospel in their local communities.

Access To Bibles:

Bibles are available in cities but are much harder to obtain in the most difficult rural areas. Give Bibles

VOM Work:

VOM responds to attacks on Christians and provides tools and training for front-line workers. Give to VOM’s Global Ministry

Prayer Requests:

  • Pray for the protection of Christian communities in Muslim-dominated areas.
  • Pray for those suffering injury, grief or loss due to violent attacks.
  • Pray for evangelists who are committed to planting new churches in Muslim-dominated areas.
  • Pray for Bible college students who spend their weekends evangelizing as part of their training.
  • Pray for the conviction, repentance and salvation of those who oppose the church.
  • Pray for church leaders as they provide encouragement to fearful believers.
  • Pray for the boldness of front-line workers sharing with Muslims and communist groups.