Day 8

Iran, Middle East
Formerly known as Persia, Iran retains its identity as one of the greatest empires of the ancient world. They have maintained their language, culture and Shia interpretation of Islam. In recent years there has been an increasing internal divide between hard-line and moderate Muslims. Internationally backed US sanctions have taken a huge toll on the economy resulting in protests on the street and greater dissatisfaction with the Islamic clerics. Protests were brutally squashed, only fuelling the tensions. The COVID-19 virus has ravaged the nation, further exposing the government to criticism. The evangelical church has continued to see incredible growth. House churches carry great influence and their growth has resulted in ongoing arrests and restrictions on Christians.

Praise Report
Praise God that this is the decade of God’s harvest among Iranians both within Iran and in the diaspora (The Bible, 1 Corinthians 3:6-9).

Prayer Requests
Pray that the increased dissatisfaction in the nation will also be a reflection of ever-deepening dissatisfaction with the Islamic faith (The Bible, Psalm 107:9).

Pray for protection over the Christian Believers at this time. Pray that they will not become the targets of government frustrations. Pray instead that the Church will experience a season of grace while the government grapples with the more urgent needs of civil unrest (The Bible, Acts 4:33).

Call to Salvation
Ask the Holy Spirit to blow on this nation that even more will come to know Jesus Christ in the midst of uncertain times (The Bible, 2 Corinthians 5:20).

Sources:
WIN
Population: 81,824,000
Chief of State: Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei
Head of Gov.: President Hassan Rouhani
Christians: 0.8%
Evangelical Christians: 0.4%
Dominant Religion: Shia Islam
Persecution Ranking: 9th
Life Expectancy: 71.15 Years
Literacy Rate: 86.8%
Population Below Poverty Line: 18.7%
Refugees Living in Iran: 982,085

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Burkina Faso, West Africa
Burkina Faso is Africa’s fourth-largest gold producer. It has so much potential, but the country also has the world’s fourth-lowest rating on the UN’s human development index. Burkina Faso continues to struggle economically as well as with corruption. Disease, malnutrition and low education levels are major issues. Freedom does exist in religion. However, as Burkinabe say, “The population is 50% Muslim, 20% Christian, and 100% animist.” Christianity continues to rise, increasing from 10,000 to nearly 3.4 million since 1960. Recent years have seen an unprecedented increase in terror attacks and militants have taken control of large parts of the eastern region. In the past 18 months the number of IDPs has risen from 87,000 to close to one million people.

Praise Report
Praise God that the recent increase in terror attacks in this nation has driven many to seek comfort and direction in the Church, with many finding new faith (The Bible, Deuteronomy 20:4).

Prayer Requests
Bless the government with great wisdom to know how to combat the increasing control of Islamic militants in its border territories (The Bible, Joel 2:11).

Australian missionary doctor, Ken Elliott, who was kidnapped by terrorists in January 2016 is being forced to train militants to become medics. Praise God for evidence he is still alive. Intercede for his immediate rescue and release (The Bible, Isaiah 51:14).

Call to Salvation
Pray that a holy fear of God will sweep this nation, causing many to run to Jesus (The Bible, Isaiah 8:13).

Sources:
WIN

Kidnapped doctor made to train terrorists (The Australian)

Population: 18,932,000
Chief of State: Roch Marc Christian Kaboré
Head of Gov.: Paul Kaba Thieba
Christians: 20.2%
Evangelical Christians: 9.1%
Dominant Religion: Sunni Islam
Persecution Ranking: Not Ranked
Life Expectancy: 55.86 Years
Literacy Rate: 28.7%
Population Below Poverty Line: 46.7%
Refugees Living in Burkina Faso: 32,097

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