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Pyramids - Flickr/Joe Pyrek
Flickr/Joe Pyrek

On August 23rd, several Christian leaders in the city of Omdurman were arrested and imprisoned for a six-hour period. Rev. Ayoub Mattan, a moderator for the Sudanese Church of Christ (SCOC), and Kuwa Shamaal (also transliterated Kwa Shamaal), head of missions at the church, were among the Christian leaders arrested. Pastor Shamaal, who had been previously arrested on December 18th, and then acquitted on January 2nd of this year, received new charges ranging from spying to inciting hatred against the government.

Police also arrested Rev. Yagoub Naway and Pastor Musa Kodi. The forementioned Christians were interrogated along with other SCOC church leaders, including finance secretary Abdulbagi Ali Abdulrahaman and deputy finance secretary El-Amin Hassam Abdulrasool, before all were released on bail. Six other members are in hiding after learning that the police are wanting to arrest and interrogate them as well.

Sudan's Ministry of Guidance and Religious Endowments had written a letter dated August 14th, ordering the Christian leaders to hand over the church leadership to a committee appointed by the government ministry -- a move that may have been made to sell off the church property in Sudan's bid to rid the country of Christianity. When the church leaders refused, police opened a case against them, even though it's unclear what law they were enforcing.

Since 2012, Sudan has expelled foreign Christians and bulldozed church buildings on the pretext that they belonged to the formerly residing South Sudanese. Besides raiding Christian bookstores and arresting believers, authorities threatened to kill those who did not leave or cooperate in their efforts to find other Christians. Previous reports on the difficulties experienced by believers in Sudan are available here.

Due to the severity of the church situation, please intercede on behalf of these pastors who were arrested on false charges. Ask God to strengthen their resolve and position as His appointed spiritual leaders when dealing with the opposing government officials. Also pray for the members of their congregation that they too will be strengthened to withstand the attempts of the enemy to halt the Lord's work from being accomplished through the church. May all of God's people in Sudan be firmly grounded on His promises and remain at peace, for our Lord Jesus assuredly states, "...I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it" (Matthew 16:18).

Country Information

46,751,152 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Sudanese Arab (70), Fur, Beja, Nuba and Fallata (30)

Sunni Muslim, small Christian minority

President (vacant)
Military transitional council under General Abdel Fattah Abdelrahman al-Burhan

Government type
Presidential republic

Legal system
Mixed legal system of Islamic law and English common law

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Sudan

Pray that Christians throughout Sudan will continue to entrust themselves to Christ and preach the Gospel boldly, knowing Jesus is the ruler over the kings of the earth (2 Timothy 1:7-12, Revelation 1:5).

Pray also that peace, justice and religious freedom may be firmly established.


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Sudan News

  • Couple's Christian Marriage Considered Legally Adulterous
    Nada and Hamouda
    Nada and Hamouda
    Photo: ADF International

    A married Christian couple in Sudan are currently on trial and, if convicted, could face 100 lashes, along with expulsion from the area. Hamouda and Nada were charged with adultery after a court ruled that their marriage was not valid. A hearing on their cas

  • Pastor Sentenced for Allegedly ''Disturbing the Peace''
    Open Sudanese Bible
    Photo: VOMC

    On April 3rd, members of a church in Gezira State, Sudan, were beginning to gather together for worship when Islamic militants prevented the believers from entering the building. The Christians were, however, able to assemble in the yard outside the building for prayer. When the believer

  • Court Orders Partial Destruction
    Hands raised in worship
    Pray that believers will be able to continue meeting together.

    A court in the Sudanese city of Khartoum Bahri has ordered the partial demolition of the Khartoum Bahri Evangelical Church, effectively blocking the only entry point to the building. The church has faced several court challenges in the p

  • Couple's Marriage Considered Illegal and Adulterous
    Wedding couple at sunset

    A married Christian couple living in Gezira State, Sudan, is on trial for adultery after the wife's family filed charges against them. The case relates to the legitimacy of their religious conversions, along with a law that prohibits a Muslim woman from being married to a non-Muslim man.