Prayer Alert: Persecuted Evangelical Groups Marching in Chiapas October 31st

DSC_0040Photos from April 2014: March of Bible Heroes in Tuxtla Gutierrez, Chiapas; The children and teens of families persecuted for their faith and expelled from their communities had been invited to participate in a Childrens Day activity in the capital, and were prepared to express their thoughts and needs to government officials.  Some of the kids are members of groups that VOMC taped in December of 2009, for the Mexican Voices video.

DSC_0052 The Evangelical members of the communities of Chilil, Yashtinin and Buena Vista were present, marching in the Children’s Parade,  with the idea of sharing something of their testimonies and afterwards to speak with someone from the governor’s office about their situation.

Many of them have lost their schooling for several years… while they have also had to learn to speak Spanish and to accomodate themselves to a new urban culture.

DSC_0065 The government officials rejected abruptly the idea of receiving the children and youth, although they themselves are well known for their tendency for photo ops with kids in their publicity and campaigning: when it is convenient for them. One of the officials even commented that they could accuse the Evangelicals of manipulating the kids for their own agenda. 

Where is the so called respect or concern for the Children’s Declaration of Rights  when kids want to speak for themselves instead of waiting for politicians do it for them?

DSC_0082 Many of the young participants are now youth, and have been training as Sunday School Teachers or for VBS teachers in VOM Mexico’s program CAP / ED this past year.

They have proven themselves to be very capable, and having learned to speak Spanish are able to express their own needs!

DSC_0084 With this same voice and capacity they are able to share and teach the Word of God, sing to and praise the Lord, cry out about the injustices in their communities, and question the apathy of the government when it concerns the religious rights of Evangelical Indigenas.

This Friday the 31st of October, they will not be marching alone… they will be accompanied by their families, their churches, Pastors from the Chiapas Alliances, and their friends in Christ. 

Remembering the Day of the Reformation, when Martin Luther nailed his theses to the doors of the Roman Catholic Cathedral almost 500 years ago, Evangelicals in Chiapas will march peacefully and respectfully, to draw the attention of a government which has in general not shown them much consideration or respect. And where the majority church has received preference where it should not.  And if the governor and his officials continue to ignore their cries, they will raise their voices on a  national level, and through their brothers and sisters in Christ on the international level in Mexico City next week, through those who are their voices where they have not been heard before.

They know that Almighty God hears them, and that He has no favorities, is not concerned about winning their votes, nor receiving gifts. They know He is not deceived , that He can not be bought, but that He is just and looks on them with affection, humble as they are, and understands their petitions to just return to their homes, to live and share their faith as it is their right.

The groups are carrying 12 municipal banners representing regions where religious persecution is still prevalent. And the Buena Vista group has decided to stay and camp out in front of the Governor’s mansion until he can give them a return date, or show reasonable progress in a supervised return to their community. Their decision is based on increased agressions suffered in the past few weeks from their community authorities and the obvious interference and colusion of government officials with them.

Please keep all in your prayers: the persecuted, the government officials and the community authorities themselves.

 

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Jesus Freaks / Locos por Jesus: Improvising Dramas and Internalizing Persecution

DSC_0204Would you renounce Christ? Would you spit on the Bible, God’s sacred word to save you life?

DSC_0211We have your nephew! Would you renounce your calling to preach the Gospel to the lost and perishing, to save the life of a loved one?

DSC_0228We will die grateful! While 2 young Chinese girls thank their pastor for preaching the Word to them, and for discipling them, he rejects his faith to save his life. Read the book to find out what price he pays for his decision.

DSC_0217I promise I won’t cry anymore! The little girl reminds her mother that it is better to suffer in prison than renounce Jesus and their faith in Him.

DSC_0234The Letter between friends… The story of 2 young Russsian women and their decisions.

DSC_0262We will die together! The testimony of Haim and his family of 7 children, and how their dying together saved others.

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Greetings from the Voice of the Martyrs Mexico Locos Team: Luis, Isaac, Lolita, Benji, Linda, Irma, and Lucy! at the end of a rewarding and challenging evening.

 

Jesus Freaks / Locos por Jesus Dramas: We will cut off your feet!

DSC_0179Youth from San Cristobal de las Casas church groups attended their first Locos por Jesus / Jesus Freaks meeting, and were presented with the task of presenting an improvised drama from the VOM Jesus Freaks book. This group, along with their pastor, took on the testimony of a youth who was threatened with having his feet cut off if he continued with his evangelizing efforts in the region.

DSC_0188Each group was allowed to scavenge in the VOM Base looking for anything to use as part of their costumes or accesories. How did they do?

DSC_0189We did’t have a bike to lend them, but otherwise they did fairly well.

DSC_0246The youth in the story braved bad weather, difficult terrain, and the threats of muslim radicals that told him he would have to stop coming into their regions or they would stop him: by cutting off his feet! You will have to look it up in the book to see how it ended… Through enacting the drama, the youth involved and their pastor gained a better idea of what it must have been like for the young man who actually lived the experience in person.

These young people probably have a better idea than most what it would be like since many of their parents or friends have been through similar experiences in Chiapas. For those who may have distanced themselves, and become comfortable where they are at, it was a lesson in not fogetting others who are persecuted for their faith.