Uzbekistan, we bless you today, in the Name of our Lord Jesus, to take a big step away from how things have been operating for the last decades into the new future the Lord has in mind for you.
Bless the government with new and fresh ideas and courage to speak out for a new way of thinking.
Bless the Church to be free from fear and ask God to give them wisdom to encourage Christians to share their faith and bring others into the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.
Father, thank You for Your love for this nation and that You are at work here. We pray that you will pour your peace and joy over Your Church this year (The Bible, Jeremiah 33:9).
Uzbekistan is a former USSR state. Once renowned for its cotton harvests, at present, deals with serious environmental problems. Agriculture lands have reduced drastically, and only the Fergana Valley is fertile enough to sustain farmlands. Central and Western Uzbekistan are arid desert territories that are sparsely populated. Although the country is secular, conversion from Islam to Christianity has no legal ground. The government exercises control over churches, and only these congregations are immune to persecution. Most converts keep their faith a secret to avoid isolation by family and community. The Persecution Ranking stays the same despite attacks on individuals due to increased attacks, raids, and imprisonment of pastors/church leaders/congregations from unrecognized Churches. Moreover, Muslim convert girls/women face family-approved abductions and marriage to Muslim men.
The primary concern is how the Egyptian government can navigate the complex internal and external challenges arising from the spillover of conflicts in Gaza, Sudan, and the Red Sea crisis. Additionally, the deteriorating economic conditions in the country are impeding citizens’ access to necessities such as food, healthcare, and electricity.
Pray that the government will restrain criminal activity, punish crimes, and enable peace and calm to prevail in the land (The Holy Bible, Romans 3:19).
Egypt is the second largest economy in Africa. Despite this, the country has a workforce deficit, and 32% of its population lives below the poverty line. Without concrete plans to expand existing resources for a growing population, rural farmers abandon traditional farmlands for urban areas in search of opportunities. Egypt also plays host to the largest refugee population in the world. They house more than six hundred thousand refugees from 10 different countries. In 2023, Egypt dropped 15 places to finish at 35th rank in the Open Doors Persecution Index. This drop is due to a decrease in violent killings and church attacks in 2022. Christians in the southern part of the country are the most vulnerable to persecution-based attacks. This part of the country (also known as Upper Egypt) is where Islamist movements such as the Salafists are heavily active. Furthermore, poor enforcement of laws to protect Christians emboldens those who persecute. Christian Believers who converted from Islam faced the worst persecution in Egypt.