www.barnabasfund.org Two church leaders from Batak Christian Protestant Church (HKBP), Indonesia, were assaulted while on their way to conduct morning prayers on 12 September. Asia Sihombing was stabbed as he walked towards an outdoor area to hold a worship service. Luspida Simandjuntak went to his aid, but she was beaten with a stick by the attackers. Sihombing was taken to a local hospital, where he underwent surgery for his injuries.
Local police claimed that this attack was not religiously motivated. However, Luspida said she recognised the attackers as men who frequently demonstrated during their services.
This is now the sixth reported attack on this congregation, which has been forced to meet in an open field following a dispute with local authorities. On 8 August, a mob of 300 Muslims surrounded worshippers during their service (Prayer Focus Update September 2010). They threw shoes and water bottles, then chased down and punched several members of the group, injuring at least a dozen Christians, including the church leader.
- Pray for continued courage, and that the persistence of this group of believers will change the hearts of their persecutors.
- Pray that that the Indonesian authorities will act to protect Christians from violence and to ensure that they are allowed to have the church buildings that they need in which to meet.