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Remember to pray for believers in Tanzania.
Photo: Flickr / Alexander Johmann

There is mounting fear of religious persecution taking place in Tanzania as a result of attacks being made against Christian clergy, churches and some Muslim leaders. In a recent incident on September 13th, a priest in Zanzibar suffered severe burns after having acid poured on him by one or more militant Muslims just outside an Internet café. Rev. Anselm Mwang'amba, 61, received burns on his face, chest and arms. VOM sources report that although he cried out for help, the owners of the Internet café delayed in bringing needed water for the dilution of the burning acid.

Although the afflicted reverend was taken to the Mnazi Mmoja Hospital in Zanzibar, his colleagues are considering the possibility of transferring him to a hospital in Dar es Salaam so he will be farther away from his persecutors. Church leaders believe the attack is linked to a militant Islamist group known as "Awakening," which is campaigning for Zanzibar's independence as an Islamic state. In reference to the attack, diocesan chancellor Rev. Cosmas Shayo states, "We are urging Christians not to retaliate." Other reports of persecution against followers of Jesus in Tanzania can be found at this list.

May the Lord completely heal both the physical and emotional wounds Rev. Mwang'amba has experienced as a result of the attack (Psalm 30:2). Pray that the church in Tanzania will not be fearful due to this incident and other similar attacks, but rather would choose to lean even more on our Almighty God who has promised His people strength in times of trouble. Ask Him to thwart any plans the enemy may have to inflict further harm on these believers through the militant group.

Country Information

Tanzania map & flagPopulation
58,552,845 (July 2020 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Mainland - African (99) (of which 95% are Bantu consisting of more than 130 tribes), other (1) (consisting of Asian, European, and Arab); Zanzibar - Arab, African, mixed Arab and African

Religion (%)
Christian (61.4), Muslim (35.2), folk religion (1.8), other (0.2), unaffiliated (1.4)
Note: Zanzibar is almost entirely Muslim

Leader
President John Magufuli

Government type
Presidential republic

Legal system
English common law; judicial review of legislative acts limited to matters of interpretation

Sources: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Tanzania

Pray that the gospel will be well received by unreached tribal groups. Ask God to influence government leaders tostand strong against the influence of Islam. Pray that pastors in Zanzibar will continue to stand strong despite efforts to eliminate Christianity.

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Tanzania News

  • Church Faces Order to Close

    Bishop Daniel Kwileba Kwiyeya - Morning Star News www.morningstarnews.org
    Bishop Daniel Kwileba Kwiyeya
    Photo: Morning Star News

    A Pentecostal church in Kisauni, which is located in Zanzibar (a semi-autonomous region of Tanzania), has been facing pressure from local Muslims about its presence in the community. The annoyed community members lobbied the local authorities, w

    ...
  • Church Members' Possessions Taken
    Worship in Tanzania -- VOM USA
    Photo: VOM USA

    A pastor and several church members in a southeastern Tanzanian village had all of their belongings and cash confiscated after refusing to contribute towards a ceremony involving witchcraft. Village leaders, who entertained fears of "curses" being placed upon the area, called upon wit

    ...
  • Unlawful Arrests for Cooking During Ramadan

    Tanzanian landscape -- Photo: Pixabay

    On June 16th, three Christians were arrested in Zanzibar for cooking food in a private home during the Ramadan fast. Emmanuel Yohana, his wife Katherine, and a woman identified as Khadija, were arrested at the couple's home. Local police, led by the area district commissioner, forcefully and unlawful

    ...
  • Third Church in Recent Burning Spree


    A church being burned in Tanzania.
    Photo: World Watch Monitor

    Another church in Tanzania's extreme northwest corner was burned to the ground on May 2nd in a suspected arson attack. No group has claimed responsibility for the fire that destroyed the church in Nyarwele, located within the Kagera regio

    ...