Fill 1






Persecution Type

Islamic oppression



Persecution Level

Very High






Absolute monarchy


Sultan and Prime Minister Sir Hassanal Bolkiah

Profile of Persecution

Violence 0.6/16.7
Church Life 13.2/16.7
National Life 11.0/16.7
Community Life 10.3/16.7
Family Life 14.5/16.7
Private Life 14.8/16.7

What does persecution look like in Brunei?

The sultan is seen as the protector and defender of the Muslim faith, and leaving Islam is illegal. Converts can be punished under penal law, and families and communities will exert great pressure to “bring them back” to their original faith. Christians tend not to face outright violence, however.

Non-traditional Christian communities cannot be registered as churches, but have to be registered as companies, societies or family centers. As such, they are treated as secular organizations and are required to submit their financial and operational reports to the government every year. Sharia (Islamic law) continues to be introduced in the country and implemented more widely.

Meet “Elora”

“Believers are not willing to take risks. Parents choose not to send their children to public church events either. Some of my friends have even said they don’t see a place for themselves in the church anymore.”

Elora was the only Christian in her school. She has faced a lot of questions and pressure, but still serves God through her church.

What has changed this year?

The implementation of the Shariah (Islamic law) penal code has increased insecurity and fear among Brunei’s Christian population, and has increased the pressure felt by Christians in public and private life.

Who is most vulnerable to persecution?

Christians from a Muslim background are the most vulnerable to persecution.

What does Open Doors do to help Christians in Brunei?

Open Doors raises prayer support for persecuted believers in Brunei.

Christian population statistic is an Open Doors estimate.

Pray for Brunei

  • Pray for pastors to be strengthened and continually equipped to serve and lead their congregations.
  • Pray that young Christians would resist the temptation to convert to Islam so they can marry—ask God to encourage younger believers to remain in the country for the long-term health of the church.
  • Thank God that He is more powerful than Shariah law and is not weakened by strict regulations.

Stories from Brunei

July 7, 2021

7 Vacation Paradises That Are No Holiday for Christians

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January 18, 2021

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April 2, 2020

‘It is very painful’: How coronavirus is impacting persecuted Christians in Asia

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