(NOTE: Real names of this story have been withheld for security reasons)
LAHORE: A good Pastor saves a young girl of his church and leads her back to Christ.
As CIP reported earlier, according to a report about 700-1000 Christian women are abducted and forced to convert to Islam each year. On top of it, majority of Christians are socially marginalized owing to lack of education, poverty and many underlying reasons. Despite the hostility that Christians are facing in Pakistan there hare many local pastors who have stepped up to help support their community. An international organization helped a local Pastor by training him; equipping him for better service of his community.
Pastor Nadeem has been working for the betterment of his community amidst growing persecution where the circumstances tend to become extremely difficult for Christians. He aims to train Christians to deal with trauma caused as a result of the persecution. His ministry has been essentially facilitated through training programs provided by the ministry partners. Pastor Nadeem stated: Though I am a pastor, I never received an education or even training. I so wanted to help the members of my community, but did not have the needed resources to do so. But a few months ago I had the chance to attend a conference, a program to strengthen pastors who work in communities where Christians face severe severe persecution. I praise God for this conference as it provided me the training I needed to help the Christians in my community who were facing persecution because of their faith.
While explaining the practical benefits of the training he received, he accounted the story of a young Christian girl in his church. He said: this girl was weak in her faith and began secretly dating her Muslim neighbour. She hid her five-year relationship from her family, as she knew they would not approve. She was one of the few girls in our community who was able to pursue an education. It was very difficult to reach out to her before I received this training, as I had no formal education. But after attending this training, I was able to preach in a way that truly challenged her. Consequently,her heart was moved and she was convicted by Pastor Nadeem’s sermons and decided to recommit her life to Christ and tell her family about the relationship she was hiding from them. He went on to say: At first, her family did not know what to do and decided to approach me about this issue. Through the training I received, I was able to counsel the girl and her family through this very difficult situation.
Pastor Nadeem told that the girl had to face intensely hard situation when she ended her relationship with her neighbour. He threatened her of dire consequences so much so that Pastor Nadeem arranged for the girl and her family to flee from their village and move to a safer place. The girl and her family then moved safely to another place with the assistance of their pastor.
As the Word of God says all pastors ought to:
Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood. Acts 20:28