A campaign of relentless, door-to-door attacks have left over 500 Christians dead at the hands of Muslim extremists in Ethiopia since June.
According to a Persecution of Christians report published last week, the Ethiopian Tewahedo Orthodox Church urged the government of the East African nation to put a stop to the attacks on Christian homes and churches.
The persecution watchdog organization reported that the Qeerroo, a group of young Oromo Islamist radicals, were responsible for the murders of pregnant women, children, and entire families in the Oromia regional state, home to the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa.
Over the summer, the Qeerroo roamed the region armed to the teeth with guns, machetes, swords, and spears, The Barnabas Fund reported earlier this month.
“Local witnesses said that police stood by and watched as the murders unfolded,” the Christian aid organization reported. “However, contacts reported that, in Bale Agarfa, some Christians were saved by the intervention of courageous local Muslims who risked their own lives to protect them.”
“These were the most horrific days for Christians in the Oromo region,” the Serbian Orthodox Church reported back in July. “There are different factions in the region. Some are ethno-nationalist and others are religious. The majority of those who got killed in a brutal way (beheaded and mutilated) are Orthodox Christian of Amhara Ethnicity.”
Eyewitnesses to the attacks reported that the vicious murderers even desecrated the bodies of their victims by “dancing and singing, carrying the chopped or hacked body parts of those they slaughtered,” even dragging the bodies of an elderly Christian couple through the streets of Gedeb Asasa.
The extremists also burned down several Christian-owned homes and businesses while vandalizing others, reportedly totaling billions of dollars’ of property damage.
Through this unspeakable tragedy, our brothers and sisters in Ethiopia have laid down their lives rather than renouncing their Savior.
We must plead with the Lord in fervent prayer for their safety. At the same time, let this also be cause for introspection—would we match their boldness for Christ? The day we find out may come without warning, folks.
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