Horrendous deaths appear to bring forth fruit in Sudan.

Problems viewing this email? View it online.
Good Friday in Darfur: four weeks after a savage martyrdom there is spiritual fruit and practical need
Donate now
Pastor Stephen lay asleep at home after a day of open air evangelistic ministry in one of the slums of Darfur, a mainly Muslim area of Sudan. He had prayed with 56 new professing believers who made the decision that day, 1st March, to leave Islam and follow Christ.

Soon after 1.00 in the morning six Muslim extremists, their faces masked and carrying machetes, broke into the family home, rousing Stephen, his wife and daughters. They asked Stephen why he had continued to preach about Jesus although they had warned him several times to stop. Stephen’s answer was simply to tell them about the Lord.

The furious intruders kicked him, beat him and tried to force him to have sexual relations with his two daughters, aged 21 and 24, but Stephen refused. Then the Islamists tied up the whole family with ropes and began to chop off their limbs until they died. The daughters, Rachel and Priscilla, were the first to be butchered, and then their mother, Beatrice. Stephen saw it all, and sang throughout “Hallelujah Hosanna”, a song much loved in the churches of Darfur. Finally he was beheaded and his hands and legs cut off. All this was seen by another member of the household who had managed to hide in the roof and thus survived.

The six killers then moved on to the church building, a large but temporary structure in which 130 Christians, mostly women with their children, slept every night. All of them were converts from Islam who had been rejected by their Muslim husbands and had nowhere else to live. Sprinkling petrol first, the Islamists set fire to the building, which was burnt to the ground. Many of the converts inside were injured and dozens were hospitalised, but by the grace of God none died.

At the funeral of Pastor Stephen and his family, a Ugandan pastor preached a powerful message that led to another 214 people giving their lives to the Lord Jesus.

Cold, sick and dying

The converts now sleep in the open air, despite cold and heavy rain. Disease has set in and six children have died.

There is an urgent need for blankets, warm clothes and proper housing.

The Christians have already started to rebuild their church, not least to provide shelter for the homeless converts. This time it will be a permanent structure which cannot be so easily burnt down. The Sudanese Church community is very poor and they have asked for funds to buy roofing materials, including iron sheets, timber and nails.

Mass baptism on Good Friday

While the physical church building is being constructed by God’s people, the Lord Himself is building the Body of Christ. “The killing of Pastor Stephen made the Darfur Church grow very fast,” said a Sudanese church leader, “There are 468 new members in the church; that makes a total of 1,368 members. We are planning for a massive baptism on the day of Good Friday.”

Christ who died to bring us to God (1 Peter 3:18)

Tomorrow, Good Friday, Christians in Sudan and around the world will focus their thoughts and prayers on the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ, as He died in agony on the cross at Calvary, to save us from our sins.

Tomorrow, Good Friday, 468 new believers, who have come to Christ in the last four weeks as a result of the death of Pastor Stephen, will be baptised in Darfur. By publicly declaring their faith like this, they risk rejection, violence and martyrdom at the hands of their families and the Muslim community.

Tomorrow, Good Friday, more than 120 homeless Darfur Christians will spend yet another cold, wet night under the trees, some of them mourning the recent deaths of their children.

“Stephen, together with his wife and family, went to the Lord in great pain,” wrote a Sudanese church leader. “They were cut in pieces as though they were cows,” said the Ugandan pastor who preached the funeral message.

Stephen’s courageous faith has brought many to a personal relationship with his Saviour. His death has resulted in new life for others. Good Friday gave way to Easter Sunday with the joy, hope and new life of the Resurrection.

Barnabas Fund is helping

Barnabas Fund has sent help for Stephen’s church members from our East Africa Hope project. Their immediate needs are clothes, blankets and a roof for their new church building. There are also medical and other needs.

Donate now to help these and other brave and faithful suffering Christians in East Africa.

Donate now
Other ways to give

If you would like to make a gift, please direct your donation to East Africa Hope PR1400

If you prefer to telephone, dial:
0800 587 4006 from within the UK or
+44 1672 565031 from outside the UK.

If you prefer to send a cheque by post: Click this link for the address of our regional office. Please quote project reference above.

For a quick donation of £5.00 by SMS (see terms and conditions here) text AID5 to 70660 (Please note: This facility is presently only available to UK supporters). Text costs £5.00 plus network charge. Barnabas Fund receives 100% of your donation. Obtain bill payer’s permission. Customer care 024 7623 1923. Charity No 1092935.

Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of all the information included on our website, we acknowledge that even our most reliable sources and careful interpretations can occasionally be wrong. We apologise for any errors of fact and will be grateful to receive corrections.
About us: Barnabas Fund works to support Christian communities around the world where they are facing poverty and persecution.
Barnabas Fund helps Christians like the ones you have been reading about in this email who are persecuted for their faith. If you would like to help us meet their physical and spiritual needs, please make a donation to the Barnabas General Fund.


Published by Julian Kennedy

Bus pass carrying 67 year old disciple of Jesus Christ. Member and deacon of Covenant Protestant Reformed Church, Ballymena. Married to Marianna. Son Joseph at home. Two daughters Marie Isabel and Kirsty in England. Enjoys keeping fit (including indoor rowing), watching track and field, nature and nature documentries. Got hip replacement in April 2014 and major surgery to re-align right knee in November 2017. Blessed in the Covenant love of God in Christ. Retired Emergency Medicine Specialty Doctor.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: