Open Doors, November 9th, 2023 (excerpts)
In the Muslim-majority Southern Philippines, Christians can face persecution and opposition. An undercover community of Christians are sharing stories from the Bible to disciple and encourage the next generation of the church.
Ten-year-old Wahid has already learned a powerful truth – words that he can cling to in the difficult times ahead. Where Wahid lives in the Southern Philippines, choosing to follow Jesus can be very dangerous. While a lot of the country’s population is Christian, his region is mostly Muslim – and anybody who decides to leave Islam for another faith can face death threats and being disowned by their family and community.
But Wahid is finding a valuable new community – a group of Christians sharing stories from the Bible. Wahid and other young secret believers come with their parents to this undercover group, led by Open Doors local partners, and together find comfort and inspiration as they read the Bible together.
The group meets twice a month, sharing stories about the heroes of faith and how God takes care of His children. Each time someone tells a story, they learn how to disciple others, ensuring that everyone learns these important lessons.
The secret meetings wouldn’t be possible without the support of the parents who want to see their children grow in their new faith. “Even though there’s danger,” a local leader says, “the parents support their kids, showing how faith can help families stick together, cope and overcome tough times.”