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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, but Christians’ rights are not protected in 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 that cross-cultural workers will reach out fearlessly to those in dangerous, unreached areas.
  • Pray for front-line workers Ruth and Mary, beginning work in a new community among the Maguindanao people.
  • Pray that a group of newly baptized believers will stand firm in their faith.
  • Pray for a group of young people who feel called to live and minister among an unreached people group.
  • Pray that a new believer will be able to tell her family about her new life in Christ.
  • Pray that community leaders will welcome front-line workers to their villages.