Release International
Favourite Share

Churches to meet outdoors on Sunday for persecuted Christians

Sat 26 May 2018
By Alex Williams

Christians forced to worship outdoors because their churches have been destroyed will be remembered across the UK and Ireland on Sunday.

Congregations will brave potential thunderstorms by hosting open air church services, in solidarity with persecuted believers around the world.

It forms part of the Great Outdoors Church Service organised by the UK-based charity Release International.

 

Spokesperson, Andrew Boyd told Premier: "In many cases, the [persecuted] Christians are going out in the streets because they want to maintain their witness.

"They're meeting in parks come rain or shine - even come snow in some cases; we've seen the pictures from China of faithful Christians meeting in the snow."

The initiative is also raising awareness of Christian communities who feel pressured into meeting secretly or whose churches have been shut down by hostile governments.

Release International

 

Encouraging more churches to get involved, Andrew Boyd said: "We have amazing freedom in this country to do whatever we like really without the risk of persecution.

"It's ever so easy to take that freedom for granted, so why don't we just take a very small risk; the really small risk is that it's probably going to rain but never mind."

The Great Outdoors Church Service campaign is highlighting countries such as China, where church buildings have been knocked down and tears have been removed.

Participants are being encouraged to consider how they might use their freedom "to the full" in supporting believers who are being persecuted for their faith.

Release International

 

Andrew Boyd added: "I think compassion begins with identifying with people.

"We can hear about situations but it's only really when you stand in their shoes and really relate to them that you understand how they feel and what they're going through.

"We're asking people to do that almost literally, to get step outside in the open air and say 'let's pray for these folks'."

Release International, which is marking its 50th anniversary in 2018, works in more than 30 countries, supporting pastors and Christian prisoners, and distributing Christian literature and Bibles.

Click here to listen to Release International spokesperson Andrew Boyd speaking with Premier's Eno Adeogan:

Stay up to date with the latest news stories from a Christian perspective. Sign up to our daily newsletter and receive more stories like this straight to your inbox every morning.

comments powered by Disqus
Daily news direct to your inbox
Your News Feed

Stay informed and inform others with up to the minute news from a Christian perspective. 

Daily News email

RSS feeds

News Widgets

You may also like...

Two people have been arrested over a blaze that gutted a disused... More

He may have lost the last election, but Jeremy Corbyn also inspired... More

Freedom of religion and belief, which includes non-belief and... More

It's Summer time! And whether the sun decides to show it’s face... More