Six Slain for Refusing to Convert

Date:

Pastor Pierre Ouédraogo - Photo: World Watch Monitor
Pastor Pierre Ouédraogo
Photo: World Watch Monitor

After attending a meeting on April 28th, Pastor Pierre Ouédraogo, 80, and other church members were talking together in the church courtyard when gunmen on motorcycles suddenly stormed in. The armed assailants demanded that the believers deny their Christian faith. Bibles and mobile phones were seized and the Christians were then taken one at a time behind the building where they were each shot. In total, six Christians died that day for refusing to convert to Islam. One other, Adama Sawadogo, was injured but thankfully his condition is not considered life-threatening.

Following the attack, the church building and two motorcycles were set on fire. Some sheep and a bag of rice were stolen from the pastor's house before the assailants left the area. The six slain church members were buried the same day during a ceremony attended by both Christians and Muslims from the community.

According to sources in the town of Sirgadji, the attackers returned the next day "searching for Christians." They returned with impunity due to there being insufficient law enforcement in the area. Some were known to locals as "young men who've been radicalized." Since the incident, more than 100 Christians have left the town to seek more secure locations.

Please uphold all those who are now grieving the loss of their loved ones. Also pray for Adama who was injured, as well as the many community members who have fled for safety. May the Christians in Burkina Faso find their strength and encouragement in the Lord, as well as each other. Pray that those responsible for this horrific attack will experience God's conviction for their crimes and, as a result, come to repentance and full surrender of their lives to Him.

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