The Nigerian paper, the Daily Sun reported today (Thursday, August 9, 2009) that three pastors had been brutally killed at the instruction of Mohammed Yusuf, the deceased leader of the Islamist group Boko Haram, last week in Borno State, Nigeria. According to an eye-witness, “The pastors alongside one Ibo man were asked to change their faith to Islam like they did to other people taken as hostages. I think there was an argument by one of the pastors which gave the others some level of confidence to also resist accepting Islam.”
Eventually, they were taken to the sect leader in his inner chamber. They were brought out later to the courtyard within the compound where the guards beheaded them one after the other, shouting, "Allah akbar" "in wild celebration accompanied with several gun shots."
Rev. Baba Gata Ibrahim told the Daily Sun in an interview that a pastor in his church, Pastor George Orjih was beheaded on the instruction of the Boko Haram leader because the clergy man refused to accept Islam. He said, “An eye witness who was also captured by the Islamic militants gave us details of how the pastor was killed. He told us they were persuading him to accept Islam and he said over his dead body. He was even said to have preached Christ to Mohammed Yusuf and that reportedly angered the sect leader who then as he ordered that the pastor and others be killed immediately.”
Christian Solidarity Worldwide reported that photographs showing the corpse of one murdered pastor from the Church of Christ in Nigeria, Rev Sabo Yakubu, indicate that his heart may have been ripped from his chest. Speaking at his funeral, Rev. Bulus Azi, the regional chairman of the denomination, urged Christians to emulate the pastors who were killed because of their refusal to betray their faith. Quoting from Revelation 7: 9-15, he said that Christians need to prepare to die anytime as their calling demands.
Please pray for the families of the deceased. Pastor Orijah was known as a committed husband and father and it was his concern for his family that led him to return home from his theological studies in Jos. Please consider posting a special prayer for the families of these brave pastors on our Persecuted Church Prayer Wall.