On April 12th a Muslim university student became embroiled in a debate over religion while on campus. The next day hundreds of Islamist students stormed his room accusing him of blasphemy. As a result he was beaten, shot and killed. Images of the horrendous lynching appearing on Facebook caused a media storm.
Since the attack Pakistan’s National Assembly passed a resolution condemning the lynching and resolving to insert ‘strong safeguards’ into the blasphemy law to prevent future abuse.
However, this has illustrated that the mere accusation of blasphemy can arouse huge anger and angst against the blasphemer whether they are guilty or not.
If this can happen to a Muslim, imagine how fierce the response would be if it was a Christian. Then on May 5th a court in Pakistan sentenced a Christian man to life imprisonment under the country’s blasphemy law for allegedly sending “blasphemous” text messages from his mobile phone all with having little to no evidence to corroborate the charges against him.
Despite this environment Bro. Hamid, our Pakistan Director wrote to share that they are planning a Young Adult Evangelism Conference on May 12–13. The purpose of this conference is to teach Pakistani Christian young people how to do evangelism in a safe and sensitive manner in a Muslim country. Then just days before the conference… we received an URGENT request for prayer from Pakistan… local police in the city where our EVANGELISM CONFERENCE FOR YOUNG ADULTS was to take place (May 12-13) ordered Pastor Hamid, our AsiaLink Director, to POSTPONE the conference due to SECURITY CONCERNS.
Within the last several years Al-Qaeda has become active in this central city in Pakistan. Just a year ago this month the leader of Al-Qaeda for Pakistan was killed along with a number of other terrorists in this city. Among those killed were two suicide bombers whose objective was to attack a local university. Imagine the damage they could do if able to attend a church service or gathering of Christians.
This delay has come as a real blow to our team and to the many who had travelled to the city to attend the conference. Police have now ordered our AsiaLink leadership to postpone the conference till June 23-24.
The threat of terrorism from Islamic extremists or from Islamic pressure is a constant… yet, our AsiaLink team press on with the ministry God has placed before them.
- PRAY that security concerns in this major Muslim city will diminish and that the conference will be able to take place in June.
- PRAY for the many disappointed people who travelled to attend that they will be able to rearrange their schedules to attend in June.
- PRAY that God would use this upcoming conference to touch and motivate the 200 young adults who will attend.
- PRAY for the special speaker and the finances that are URGENTLY needed to make this conference possible.
ASK God to protect those who will attend and that the conference location will be safe and secure for all! Also, pray that the speaker would be protected and used by God to inspire a new generation of young adults to reach their generation for Christ.