Church in Pakistan Continues Worship in the Face of Terrorist Threats
07/29/2019 Pakistan (International Christian Concern) – Pastor Naveed Azeem, head pastor of an Assembly of God Church in Karachi, continues to receive threats to stop hosting prayer services and other church activities in his community. Last Tuesday, July 23, an unidentified group reportedly threatened the pastor over the phone. According to Pastor Azeem, they threatened to blow up the church if he did not halt all activities.
More than a month before this frightening call, on May 1, Pastor Azeem found an envelope near a shoe rack outside of his church building. Within the envelope, he found a handwritten letter demanding that he pay $3,500 USD within 10 days or be ready to “dig up 50 graves”. The letter also warned that if he went to the police, there would be severe consequences. Consequences as grave as the recent terrorist attacks on churches in Sri Lanka, the letter threatened.
According to a local source, the resolve of the congregations to gather and worship has increased even after the threats were made public. The believers have refused to leave the church under any circumstance. Rather, they are insisting that local authorities protect them from all external predators.
“We want protection against any attempt that hinders our right to worship,” one member of the church explained to International Christian Concern (ICC). “We have religious freedom and right to live.”
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