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Osman Jama. Image: MNA

Muslim convert urges churches to evangelize their local Islamic communities

Churches need to do more to evangelize the growing U.S. Islamic population, a Muslim Somalian refugee who became a Christian missionary says.

“We take our personal discipleship and personal growth very seriously, but we are also commissioned to go make disciples of all the nations, and in that, we are called not just to study but to go,” Osman Jama says.  “The `go’ part is also important. I think we do a really good job of sending others, but my personal belief is that everyone is called to evangelism; there are just different talents and callings. Some are called to the Middle East, some are called to Europe, but others are called to be here, to do evangelism with their neighbors and to go across the street as much as across the country or across the continent.”

Jama says it was a friend who led him to Christ in August 2007. Just one percent of Somalia’s population is Christian. Severe persecution continues to take place at the hands of Muslim jihadists in many parts of the country of 18 million.

READ: Former atheist, then Muslim, now follows Christ

When Jama’s family learned of his becoming a Christian, they disowned him and effectively cut him off from all communication. In the years since, his immediate and extended family continued to refuse to speak with him, one of the few exceptions being when one of his sisters informed him about the death of his parents.

Hamid Hatami, the first Iranian American from a Muslim background to be ordained a teaching elder in the Presbyterian Church in America, said the persecution of Christians increased considerably when the Islamic Republic took control in 1979. Voice of the Martyrs considers Jama’s native Somalia to be one of the hardest places in the world in which to reach unbelievers.

Hatami says he is grateful for God’s sovereignty in having him acquire computer systems and software engineering degrees because it allows him to provide secure connections when working with underground church leaders in Iran.

Reflecting on his journey and message, Jama noted that Somalia, his birthplace, is considered one of the most challenging places to evangelize.

“That is tough soil,” he said. “If God can reach me, he can reach any of them. The question I would pose to everyone is, how is God calling you to be a part of that?”

Yet, he remains hopeful, asserting, “If God can reach me, He can reach anyone.”


–Dwight Widaman | Metro Voice

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