Date: June 6, 2020
Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.’ (Matthew 5:11-12)
As we read this week’s update let’s keep in mind that many people in the Bible endured false accusations – including Job, Moses and of course Jesus himself. Yet Jesus tells us in the verses above that this has always happened, and that a great reward in heaven awaits.
Pastor Keshav Raj Acharya from the city of Pokhara in Nepal has been repeatedly arrested and detained since the end of March. He was originally arrested after a video of him saying that the coronavirus could be healed through Christian prayer was uploaded on YouTube. The pastor denies uploading the video.
According to his wife Junu, a man had called him requesting to visit the pastor’s house to pray for the man’s wife, whom he claimed had contracted the virus. Not long after the couple arrived at the pastor’s home, several police officers arrived and made the arrest.
Pastor Keshav was initially bailed but subsequently re-arrested. At the time of writing he is being held in a remote part of Nepal where no means of transportation is available, charged with ‘outraging religious feelings’ and ‘attempting to convert’.
In summary, please pray:
- For Pastor Keshav’s swift release from prison.
- For peace, comfort and strength for his wife Junu while she waits to hear news of her husband.
- That Nepal’s anti-conversion laws would be repealed, so that no one else faces charges like those against Pastor Keshav.