It has been just over one year since Afghanistan fell to the Taliban as the U.S. and its allies withdrew their troops after twenty years in the country.
Already the second-worst country in the world for Christians prior to the takeover, the Middle Eastern nation has jumped to the number one position on Open Door USA’s World Watch List for the most nations hostile to believers.
And yet Afghanistan is host to the second-fastest growing church in the world as a war torn people turn to hope in Christ.
“The people of Afghanistan are so tired; Islam has decimated them and the Taliban has controlled them in such wicked ways. They’re looking for any sign of hope,” says “Reza,” the pseudonym used for an Afghan Christian who works with Global Cataclysmic Ministries and spoke with Mission Network News recently.
Indeed, last year there were reports from Afghanistan that the largely underground church was exploding in numbers, even as thousands were heroically evacuated from the country in an incredible last-minute effort by western ministries.
The Taliban, which controlled the country prior to the US intervention in 2003 and exercised then, as they do now, strict Islamic legal code, has certainly been more hostile to the church than the American-back regime.
“A lot of people have forgotten about Afghanistan, and the decimation that has happened since the American pull out,” Reza explained.
As it is difficult for NGOs to operate in the country, a network of underground aid has been establish among the covert churches to bring relief and evacuate the vulnerable.
“It’s become [increasingly] difficult and more expensive, but praise the Lord, He’s given us new avenues to bring people out,” Reza said.
“God is moving so powerfully; we want to start underground churches who make disciples in the darkest places on the earth. With your prayer support and with your generosity that really can happen,” he continued.
“Afghanistan is still the second-fastest growing church in the world, even with the Taliban in power. Imagine if, one day, we hear 10 percent of the Afghan population has turned to Jesus.”
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