Russia News

  • Heightened Persecution of Christians
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    This Friday, February 24th, marks one year since the Russian offensive in Ukraine began, a war that has resulted in the death of thousands, the destruction of whole cities and the forced displacement of millions of people. The outbreak was triggered by a major escalation of tensions, which have been simmering since the Russian annexation of the Crimean Peninsula in 2014, and the ongoing struggles with Russian-backed separatists in the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine.

  • Rising "Tax on Faithfulness"
    ''Do You Believe?'' newspaper
    Do You Believe? newspaper.
    Photo: VOM Korea

    Evangelical believers in Russia were forced to pay what is being called a "tax on faithfulness" in 2022, and this year that price is expected to increase. Throughout the country, basic Christian activities have been investigated and punished as crimes. "Believers paid fines, appealed their decisions, and in most cases lost their appeals," reported Dr. Hyun Sook Foley from The Voice of the Martyrs Korea. "It is a trend that The Voice of the Martyrs Korea is monitoring closely as 2023 begins."

  • Theological Colleges Stripped of Licenses
    Bible and notebooks on a park bench
    Pray that believers in Russia will have wisdom as they pursue religious freedom.

    On April 6th, the Theological Institute run by the Evangelical-Lutheran Church of Ingria was stripped of its higher education license. Another Lutheran college in Russia is in the process of fighting a similar action. The colleges of the Baptist Union and Pentecostal Union have likewise lost their licenses, and other colleges have been banned from accepting new students.

  • Strict Opposition to Missionary Activity
    Rubles, gavel

    In July 2016, Russia passed religion laws restricting "illegal missionary activity" by either citizens or foreigners. This activity could involve speaking to people about religion, or the distribution of either printed, audio or video materials. Between January and June of this year, there have been 42 known prosecutions, resulting in 36 convictions. All those who were convicted received fines.