Nigeria: Record-Setting Pace of Violence Against Christians

Based on stats of the previous year, human rights experts are predicting a record-setting year of violence against Nigeria’s Christians for 2022. The Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project recorded a total of 31 attacks on Nigerian churches and Christians throughout 2021. Yet, so far, about halfway through 2022, there have already been more than 23 separate attacks on believers.

The deadly raid on a church in southwestern Nigeria on Pentecost Sunday (see Mission Network News for details), as well as last month’s kidnapping of Samuel Kanu, the head of Nigeria’s Methodist Church, are two incidents that recently captured the world’s attention. Sadly, events like these are all too common.

In this episode of Closer to the Fire, host Greg Musselman discusses concerns over the increasing levels of violence against Christians in Nigeria with Emmanuel Ogebe. Mr. Ogebe, an international human rights lawyer specializing in African issues, currently serves as the Special Counsel of the Justice for Jos Project based in Washington, D.C.

Length: 42:00
Date: June 23, 2022

Show Notes

The Voice of the Martyrs Canada
Jubilee Campaign:
View the Justice for Jos Project on Facebook:


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Current Ministry Projects

Through a vast variety of projects, VOMC works with in-country partners to encourage and strengthen Nigerian Christians who have experienced extreme forms of persecution. Christian widows receive trauma counselling to help them heal from the aftermath of tragically losing their husbands due to persecution-related attacks. These widows are also provided skills training so they can have a practical means of income to support their families. Children who have lost their parents and other relatives during incidents of persecution are provided a safe place in which to grow and be nurtured. Medical fees are paid for Christians who have suffered serious injuries perpetrated by militants affiliated with Nigeria’s Boko Haram and Fulani groups. Discipleship and vocational training are being offered to Muslim-background believers to help them start their new lives spiritually and practically.

The ministry also gives persecuted Christians who are completing their master's degrees – and have a desire to share the Gospel in their communities – the opportunity to benefit as recipients of the Glenn Penner Scholarship Award. Another one of VOMC’s projects in Nigeria involves the distribution of food aid to persecuted Christians residing within Internal Displacement Persons' (IDP) camps. Through this distribution effort, displaced believers who have been forced to flee their homes and communities because of their faith not only receive daily sustenance but also the encouragement that’s needed to rebuild their lives.

Project Funds: Women’s Ministry, Bibles (Distribution), Medical, Families of Martyrs, Equipping the Saints, Relief & Development

Country Information

219,463,862 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Hausa (30), Yoruba (15.5), Igbo (15.2), Fulani (6), Tiv (2.4), Kanuri/Beriberi (2.4), Ibibio (1.8), Izaw/Izon (1.8), Other (24.7)

Religion (%)
Islam (53.5), Christianity (45.9), Other (0.6)

President Muhammadu Buhari (2015)

Government type
Federal presidential republic

Legal system
Mixed legal system of English common law, Islamic law (in 12 northern states), and traditional law

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Nigeria

May God minister great comfort and healing to all who have been injured or bereaved as a result of the militants' brutal attacks. In addition, pray for the remaining abducted Chibok schoolgirls, that they will be assured of the Lord's abiding presence as they await release from captivity. Continue to uphold President Buhari and other members of the Nigerian government as they make further attempts to rescue the remaining girls and provide protection for vulnerable citizens. As they persevere in their endeavours to overcome terrorism, may they be granted wisdom, courage, strength and help from on high.


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