United Arab Emirates
Despite recent tensions between the United Arab Emirates and Israel, a delegation of senior Israeli officials is planned to visit Abu Dhabi to prepare for the next meeting of the Negev Summit of Middle Eastern states, set to be held in Morocco. During their meetings, members of the different groups from the forum’s representative countries will work on the collaborations that will be presented at the summit. At the same time, Ushpiz is expected to meet with his counterparts from other countries and hold the third meeting of the forum’s steering committee. Pray for the formed joint working groups on regional security, energy, education and tolerance, food and water security and tourism.
Pray that the people of UAE will seek deliverance from their bondages from God and improve in the work of their hands (The Bible, Psalm 90:17).
The UAE is a federation of seven states, on the eastern side of the Arabian Peninsula, called emirates, ruled by tribal chiefs called Sheiks or Emirs. The largest and richest of the emirates is Abu Dhabi with significant oil and gas reserves. The present Emir is Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan from 13 May 2022. Islam is the prominent religion practiced in the country. Apart from being the largest religion, it is also the official religion in Dubai, UAE. Around 76% of the population in the country are Muslims. Christians represent around 13% of the country’s population. The population of Christianity in Dubai seems to be growing with increasing immigration to UAE. Both Catholics and Protestants have a significant presence. Christians in UAE belong to different denominations, from Baptists to Anglican and Coptic. There are roughly 40 Churches and there is a freedom to provide Christians land to build Churches in the country.
As the Church grows rapidly in Nepal, this attracts attention from those who oppose this. Though conversion from Buddhism to any other religion is illegal in Nepal, many people have chosen to follow Jesus. A lobby has raised up within Nepal accusing missionaries of destroying local culture and exploiting the poor. Pray for God’s protection over missionaries and Nepali Christians. May their lives be upright and righteous in every way. Praise God that our loving Father God promises to instruct and teach us in the way we should go; He counsels us with His loving eye on us (The Bible, Psalm 32:8).
Source: Christian missionaries target the birthplace of Buddha in Nepal (BBC)
Nepal is famous for the world’s tallest mountain range. Recovery from the devastating 2015 earthquake continues to be hampered by political infighting which has prevented the release of funds that were pledged. An extremely poor country, Nepal’s economy relies on international aid and tourism which suffered tremendously during the COVID-19 pandemic. Human trafficking and corruption remain major problems. Nepal and India are the world’s only Hindu-majority nations. Despite this, Nepal is officially a secular nation and freedom of religion was enacted in 2006, but persecution has intensified. Five years ago, new laws were introduced to prevent religious conversion. Only a few Nepali Christians have been charged and convicted under these laws, and a hand full of expatriate workers expelled.