#40 in Christian persecution, Malaysia

Malaysia Facts Score:62/ 100Region:AsiaPersecution Type:Islamic oppressionPersecution Level:Very HighPopulation:32,454,000Christians:2,951,000Main Religion:IslamGovernment:Federal parliamentary constitutional monarchyLeader:Prime Minister Mahathir bin Mohamad Profile of Persecution Violence 9%Church Life 58%National Life 72%Community Life 76%Family Life 87%Private Life 72%

Most people are expected to be Muslim Every ethnic Malay is expected to be Muslim. Whoever deviates from this is viewed as not just going against the Constitution, but also against society at large, their family and their neighborhood. Roman Catholics and Methodists are watched by the authorities and non-governmental organizations, but non-traditional Protestant groups are more often targeted, as these tend to be more active in testifying about their faith. How Christians are suffering Christians from Muslim backgrounds often hide their faith and meet in secret. If discovered, they could face rejection from their family, or be forced to divorce their spouse. Occasionally they may be sent to a re-education camp, or simply disappear. The fate of Pastor Raymond Koh, abducted in February 2017, is still not clear and the country’s human rights commission in its final report declared that the Special Branch of the police was involved in the abduction. This reality sent chills into the Christian community. Churches are monitored by the government, and it is illegal to share the gospel with Malay Muslims. Examples All children in state-run nursery and elementary schools are required to attend Islamic education. In state schools, Muslim pupils (including Christians with a Muslim background) are required to attend Islamic classes. At the university level, Islamic courses are also mandated. In February 2017, Pastor Raymond Koh was abducted in broad daylight. The country’s Human Rights Commission has attempted to investigate this incident but has been prevented from freely proceeding with their investigation. Population and number of Christian statistics: Johnson T M and Zurlo G A, eds., World Christian Database (Leiden/Boston: Brill, accessed April 2019).

Pray for Malaysia

  • Pray for protection over secret gatherings of believers from Muslim backgrounds. Pray these times of fellowship would be encouraging and unifying.

  • Pray for new converts who are often kicked out of their homes, isolated from their families and communities, and sent to Islamic re-education camps. Pray for strength and courage.

  • The constitution defines ethnic Malays as Muslims. For this reason, Malays do not have religious liberty to leave Islam and those who practice other religions are forbidden from sharing their faith among Malay Muslims. Pray for change in Malaysia.

  • Pray for continued grace to be upon Susannah Koh and the family. Pray for endurance in the continual search for answers and justice.

Malaysia Photo Gallery

Stories from Malaysia March 6, 2020 A ‘living death’: How Christian women experience persecution A new 2020 Open Doors in-depth report focusing on gendered persecution surfaces some disturbing realities for Christian women and girls in the top 50 countries where women are highly persecuted for their decision to follow Jesus. Read More + READ MORE January 22, 2020 Facial recognition technology ushers in new wave of Christian persecution A new wave of Christian persecution led by facial recognition technology is one of four major trends impacting believers today. Read More + READ MORE

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