Central Asia: Teenage Murderer Finds Hope in the Lord
*Representative photo used to protect identity
Munira*, a teenager girl from Central Asia, was convicted and imprisoned for murder. Munira’s life was changed after she received Christian literature distributed by Open Doors.
Life without parents can be like walking in darkness. It can be extremely difficult to walk in the right direction without the guidance of loving parents. In his novel Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens writes about an orphan boy who runs away from a workhouse and meets a pickpocket on the streets of London. Despite the fact that this story is full of tears and desperation, it has a happy ending. This is not always the case in real life.
Meet Asel* (39), a Christian from Central Asia who has dedicated her life to helping those left without parents. She is supported by Open Doors. “For eight years, I have worked with orphans in prison,” she says. “Over those years, I heard hundreds of desperately sad stories. Often, the lives of orphans are confusing and discouraging. After years spent in orphanages, these children usually enter a life of crime. Many end up in prison. After prison, they often return to the criminal life. It’s a vicious cycle.”
Recently, Ansel’s ministry began to show encouraging results. She received outstanding reviews of her activities from the Director of the Youth Crime Department. “The lives of teenagers are changing as a result of their communication with you and your sacrificial ministry to them,” the Director said to Asel.
“We are so grateful that Open Doors provides us with such amazing tools,” shared Asel enthusiastically. “Munira asked me to provide her with some Christian books. I gave her three different ones. I did not expect her to read them, but she did! After three weeks, Munira came to me in tears. She gave me a hug and whispered, ‘I used to live in hatred. I was angry at my parents who abandoned me when I was a baby. I was angry at the workers in the orphanage, angry at my classmates and angry at the world. I was angry at God. After reading the books you gave me about God’s love for sinners and after witnessing your love for me, I began to realize why you are so nice. You have a loving God. I do not want to be the evil person I once was. I want to be a loving and forgiving person, just as Christ taught us to be.’”
Asel finishes her testimony in tears. It is not very often that a story like this can be found in prison.
Praise God that He has saved many in Central Asia, including a teenage murderer. What seems hopeless to the world is not without hope to God!
*Names changed for security reasons