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Rubble of a home
A burned home in Kagoro, Kaduna State.
Photo: Gideon Agwom Mutum via Morning Star News

The Nigerian state of Kaduna experienced multiple attacks on predominantly Christian villages between March 17th and March 24th. Due to the nature of these recent attacks, the exact number of victims is not yet clear, but survivors estimate that over 80 villagers were killed and approximately 150 others kidnapped.

On March 17th, Fulani militants attacked the village of Agunu Dutse, storming into the village during the middle of the night and shooting indiscriminately. While there were no reports of deaths from that attack, at least one villager was wounded and an estimated 46 others were abducted.

Three days after the March 17th incident, militants attacked four villages in the Kagoro area of southeast Kaduna on March 20th. At least 32 people have been confirmed dead and 200 houses were destroyed. During the invasion, the attackers looted buildings, killed villagers and torched homes. The militants were said to be armed with sophisticated weaponry. Kagoro is considered the centre of Christianity in southern Kaduna.

Later that same week, an estimated 50 Christians were killed and 100 others abducted when terrorists attacked ten communities in the Giwa area during the night of March 24th. This time, they burned stores, homes and a church building, kidnapping a Catholic priest in the process. The attacks continued the next morning. As residents returned to collect the bodies of the victims, the militants shot at them. Following the attacks, a resident described the situation by lamenting that "Giwa Local Government Area of Kaduna State is bleeding."

The constant violence has severely impacted those remaining in the area. More than once, survivors stated, "This is too much for us." Another asked, "Is this a war declared against Christians?" While members of the government, army and police speak against the attacks, little appears to be done. Rev. John Joseph Hayab, who serves as the chair of the Kaduna chapter for the Christian Association of Nigeria, stated that the government's response is usually media rhetoric with little concrete action. He declared that "the government's usual media condemnation whenever there is havoc is not good enough." For more reports addressing the extreme difficulties facing Christians in Nigeria, go to our country report.

Please lift up these suffering Christians in your prayers. Also uphold the many villagers who are now mourning the loss of their deceased family members and friends. Pray for God's protection over the lives of those who have been kidnapped, asking that they be safely returned to their communities. May the hearts of the perpetrators be strongly convicted, leading them to sincere repentance for their crimes against humanity – and ultimately to salvation and transformation through the saving power of Christ. In the meantime, pray that governmental leaders will take the necessary actions to cease the havoc that's presently reigning in Kaduna State, along with other areas of great concern in Nigeria.

Current Ministry Projects

VOMC works with in-country partners to encourage and strengthen persecuted Christians through a variety of methods. Christians are equipped with audio bibles to distribute to their persecutors. Christian widows receive skills training and trauma counselling as a way to provide an income for their families and heal from the trauma they’ve faced in losing their husbands. Children who have lost parents and relatives due to attacks are provided with a safe place to grow and be nurtured. Medical fees are paid for Christians who have suffered injuries due to attacks by Boko Haram and Fulani. Discipleship and vocational training are given to Muslim Background Believers to help them start their new lives spiritually and practically. The Glenn Penner Scholarship Award is used to help equip persecuted Christians completing their Masters and have a heart to share the Gospel with the lost in their community.

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

Country Information

Population
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)

Leader
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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