Sunday, December 7, 2014

Boko Haram violence continuing in Nigeria

Did you know that this past year approximately 10,000 people were killed by the Boko Haram in Nigeria? This is similar to the number of civilians killed in Iraq, where the US lead coalition is fighting ISIS (Nigeria's Boko Haram Violence is Comparable to ISIS in Iraq).

Candle lighting at service remembering
our brothers and sisters in Nigeria
I attended a prayer vigil earlier this evening at Lake Nokomis Lutheran. The service was focused on bringing attention to the people of Nigeria being persecuted by this group, many of whom are Christians.  Boko Haram, a militant Islamist group, based in NE Nigeria, which is translated as Western education is evil.  In addition to murdering people who don't ascribe to their radical version of Islam, they are also burning churches and coercing boys and young men to join them, under threat of death.

This conflict hits close to home for many Lutherans in the Minneapolis Area Synod, who have sister congregations in Nigeria.  At the service we heard impassioned letters from Nigerian pastors calling on us to pray for them and the rebuilding of their churches, many of which have been burned to the ground and many of the members who have been killed or have fled the region.

Over 200 school girls are still missing after they were kidnapped by the Boko Haram in April, 2014.

We were invited to urge our government to put pressure on the Nigerian government to stop the Boko Haram.

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