Where Persecution Comes From
The government of the Maldives insists that the country be run according to conservative Islamic tenets, and that all citizens be Muslims. In effect, there is no religious freedom, except for expatriate Christians who are only allowed to practice their faith in utmost privacy, behind closed doors and strictly monitored. Because the government is currently engaged in a political struggle with opposition forces, any perceived threat (like Christianity) is quickly and harshly eradicated. Radical Islamic preachers and clerics exert socio-religious control and influence others to do the same, making it impossible for Christians, especially converts, to practice their faith without heavy monitoring or punishment by government authorities.
How Christians are Suffering
Because the Maldives has one of the highest population densities worldwide, communities are extremely close-knit and homogeneous. These communities serve as natural watchdogs for any deviation from the norm, including the practice of Christianity. Conversion to Christianity is thus easily reported to Muslim leaders or authorities. Expatriate Christians are under constant monitoring as well, and fellowship is incredibly challenging due to the high degree of social control. The larger the expatriate Christian community gets, the harder it becomes for them to meet–deemed a threat by the government and society.
Due to security risks and the extremely small Christian community in the Maldives, examples of Christian persecution go unreported and undisclosed.
Pray for Maldives
- Pray that God would lead secret believers in the Maldives to fellowship. Pray that they would have access to the Bible, considered contraband under Maldivian law.
- To be Maldivian is to be Muslim. Pray that God would reveal Himself to Muslim Maldivians in dreams and visions and that they will be led to believers who will be bold enough to share the gospel.
- Many Maldivians want to leave the country due to restricted freedoms. They often seek solace in drugs. Local media reports that drug abuse has become the biggest societal issue in the country. Pray that Maldivians will turn to Jesus to experience true freedom.
- Pray for the discipleship of secret believers in the country who are stifled by issues of security and unity. Pray for God to provide solutions to these problems so that secret believers can be spiritually nourished and experience growth.