Christians from across the United States will gather at the National Mall in Washington on Saturday for the third annual March for the Martyrs, sponsored by the organization For the Martyrs. The event intends to raise awareness of Christian persecution while giving believers an opportunity to stand in solidarity with those suffering for their faith. A Night of Prayer for the Persecuted at the Museum of the Bible will follow the march.
One in seven Christians around the world – 360 million people — faces high levels of persecution for their faith. That number has grown by 20 million believers in the last year as the situation for Christians in countries such as Afghanistan, North Korea and Nigeria continues to deteriorate.
“We are on a mission to combat silence in the media and within the church that has turned a blind eye to persecuted Christians who are suffering for the faith,” said Gia Chacón, founder of For the Martyrs. “As members of the body of Christ, persecuted Christians deserve our prayers and need our voice. There is an unabashed increase in the violence toward Christians, and as long as they are in danger or suffering for their faith, we will be present raising awareness and advocating for them.”
Enes Kanter Freedom, a human rights activist and former NBA player, headlines the list of speakers at the event, along with David Curry, CEO of Open Doors USA; Esther Zang, a survivor of persecution in China; and Andrew Brunson, a pastor who spent two years as a political prisoner in Turkey.
“Millions of our brothers and sisters around the world face harassment, physical harm and even death for their faith in Jesus,” Curry said. “We’re excited to partner with Gia and March for the Martyrs to pray for and speak out on behalf of those who are suffering for Christ.”
–Dwight Widaman | Metro Voice