Sunday, 29 November -0001 19:00

Afghanistan Ongoing Problems

Written by Rev. H.A. Bergsma
"Being Muslim for a millennium," Afghanistan appears to some as "a God-given opportunity for missionary work," an American charity worker said. But Islam's roots run deep in Afghanistan and resistance is formidable. To many traditional Afghans, proselytizing threatens the very fibre of daily life where religion is an intrinsic part. Last fall, Dayna Curry and Heather Mercer, aid workers with Shelter Now International, were arrested and held for weeks by the ruling Taliban for allegedly proselytizing to win Afghan converts to Christianity. Islamic law prescribes death for Muslims who convert to other religions. The interim government has shown no sign of liberalizing the Islamic law. Kandahar's Mullah Naeem continues to uphold the strict Islamic law, "likening missionaries to snakes, and endorsing capital punishment for converts." Meanwhile, Philip Maher, a 20-year veteran of World Vision in speaking with ASSIST News Service said that World Vision was asked by the World Food Program to feed 300,000 people. He reported that organizing meant first taking a survey, for which they needed educated women, who could read and write their language. The Taliban had closed the schools during their six-year take-over, but some girls and boys were able to attend "secret underground schools." The Afghan people that World Vision worked with showed no animosity toward them--in fact, were supportive, because they got rid of the Taliban. But, Maher added, "just getting anything done in Afghanistan is difficult. There's no infrastructure--virtually no roads." You had to put chains on your tires to drive through rivers, ice, and mud a foot-and-a-half deep. Some of the 2,800 metric tons of food was delivered by donkey. (From ASSIST News Service)

Food is eagerly accepted in Afghanistan, but the Word is still a problem to many there. May God also overcome that problem.

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