Central African Republic Facts
|Score:||61 / 100|
|Persecution Type:||Islamic Oppression|
|Persecution Level:||Very High|
|Main Religion:||Christianity, Islam|
|Leader:||President Faustin-Archange Touadéra|
Profile of Persecution Methodology
Where Persecution Comes From
While the Central African Republic (CAR) is a country with a Christian majority, there is a significant Muslim minority, particularly in the northeastern part of the country. In a civil war that began in 2013, the militant Séléka group has mobilized Muslims who have been historically marginalized, fighting against the anti-Balaka militant group comprised of animists and nominal Christians. This conflict has been a source of Christian persecution for those of faith who face threats and attacks mainly from the Séléka, but also from the anti-Balaka. These attacks mainly target churches and pastors. In addition to this sectarian violence, Christians from Muslim backgrounds also face significant pressure from their Muslim families and communities as a result of their faith.
How Christians are Suffering
The conflict in CAR has resulted in violence and atrocities towards Christians at the hands of militant groups on both sides of the conflict. Gathering for worship is dangerous, as church buildings are sometimes burned and ransacked. Numerous church leaders have been violently attacked. Thousands of Christians have been displaced as a result of the conflict, forced to relocate to camps and relinquish their livelihoods. Meanwhile, converts from Christianity also experience persecution at the hands of their immediate family members and local communities. These converts are often ostracized and violently pressured to renounce Christianity.
There have been numerous reports of Christians being attacked by militant groups. In September 2016, members of the Séléka militia assaulted and robbed a group of 15 pastors who were conducting a seminar. They then looted the church as well. This happened just a day after the Séléka looted two Catholic churches and killed nine people in the town of Kaga Bandoro.
In October 2016, Séléka militants attacked and killed 23 Christians in Kaga Bandoro, displacing 14,000 others in the process.
In February 2017, a pastor in the capital city of Bangui was killed and his church demolished. This took place in the PK5 neighborhood, known to be the site of the worst conflict in the city.
Pray for Central African Republic
- Pray with Christians targeted by Fulani herdsmen and Muslim terrorists. Pray for these persecutors’ eyes to be opened to the truth of Jesus.
- Pray for persecuted believers to know God’s faithfulness and peace in the midst of earthly chaos. Pray for provision for those who give up all worldly possessions and rights to know Jesus.
- Pray for the wisdom of pastors as they minister to their congregations in the face of great difficulties. Pray that the Lord will comfort them so they are able to comfort others.
Central African Republic Photo Gallery
Stories from Central African Republic
"God’s Word does not teach us to pray that God kills our enemies but that He will change their hearts."