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Pray for the protection of
churches in Tanzania.
Flickr / Sherwood (cc)

Three churches in northwest Tanzania were set ablaze on September 22nd by militants, causing everything inside them to burn. Fortunately, no one was injured. "What is worrying us is that the burning of the three churches happened within a span of two hours," states Pastor Vedasto Athanas of Living Water International Church. "What is even more worrying is that we have been receiving threats from Muslim extremists that they want churches reduced in this area."

These attacks have come at a time when the church in Tanzania is experiencing extreme growth. The resulting destruction leaves about 850 Christians without their places of worship. "We have lost everything in our churches -- the buildings, the chairs and musical instruments," the pastor added. "Our members have nowhere to worship. We do request prayers at this difficult moment."

This is not the first time that Tanzanian Christian churches have been burned by extremists. In January, a church building in the Muheza district was also set on fire. Additionally, a woman in this district who converted to Christianity after marrying her Christian husband was beaten and burned by her Muslim parents late last year.

As Christians make up about 54 percent of the Tanzanian population, the country's 31 percent Muslim population has largely been tolerant of Christian practices until a recent polarization between moderate and radical Muslims, according to Operation World.

First of all, may God minister His perfect peace to the congregations of these churches after the destruction and upheaval they've recently experienced, restoring to them all that the enemy has destroyed. And may He not only minister to the Christians of these communities but also to the perpetrators of the violence, convicting them of their sin and need of salvation. We pray that greater blessing will be poured out upon His people in Tanzania as they continue letting their lights shine brightly so that many others will clearly discover the Way, the Truth and the Life! (John 14:6).

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

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  • 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

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  • 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

    ...