As you may know this past Tuesday was Reformation Day. The Reformation was a Christian protest out of which came Protestantism, a movement which taught that it is God who saves and not the church or its rituals. On October 31, 1517 a German monk, Martin Luther, nailed his Ninety-five Theses on the door of the All Saints’ Church in Wittenberg. This event, which happened over 500 years ago, led to the beginning of protestant churches around the world. Speaking of churches around the world, this Sunday is the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church.
In the same ways we most often take for granted the peace we experience in our country, we don’t fully appreciate the religious freedom we have. While there are ways that we as Christians in Canada encounter opposition and discrimination, it is certainly not to the degree where we are imprisoned or even killed for expressing our faith. Those, however, are realities for over 200 million Christians who live and worship in places where there is a high threat of persecution. Each year thousands of Christians are killed because of their faith. As much as I encourage us all to appreciate the freedom we have, I also want to challenge all of us to be diligent in praying for Christians around the world and to join them in whatever ways we can to advocate and fight for such freedoms. If you are interested in learning more about the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church please follow this link.