BIC church in Colombia faces violence in neighborhood

—In the wake of the news from Mennonite Central Committee that community and church leaders have been targets for murder, death threats, and violence by paramilitary armed groups in the northern Colombian province of Córdoba this year, BICWM missionaries Sherry and Trevor Main report that BIC churches in the country remain safe and strong. The churches, located in Medellín and Colombia’s capital city of Bogotá, lie several hundred miles south of Córdoba.

Despite the relative peace, however, the Mains note that there has been a significant rise in violence over the last several months in the neighborhood of one BIC church in Medellín. According to a communiqué from a pastoral couple there, more than 30 people have been brutally murdered in the area around the church in the last month. Most of the deaths have been linked to battles between gangs and drug dealers.

“We ask that you support us in prayer, not only so that God will guard our lives and the lives of the members of our church, but also that God will allow us to be light in the midst of the darkness,” the pastoral couple writes. “We realize that the presence of the Church should impact society. Please ask God to help us go against this cultural trend with the word of God.”

The couple also asked for prayer on behalf of the families from the neighborhood that were mourning the loss of loved ones.