Church Attack in Nigeria Leaves 19 Dead
An attack by gunmen on a Roman Catholic church in Benue state, central Nigeria, last Tuesday left 19 people dead, including two priests. Police suspect that the armed men, who also set fire to nearly 50 houses in the community, were ethnic Fulani herdsmen; if so, this attack is the latest in a series of bloody clashes between majority-Muslim herdsmen and mainly Christian farmers in central Nigeria. Hundreds of people have died this year alone, the violence exacerbated by dwindling land and water resources. In a recent joint press conference with Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, U.S. President Donald Trump spoke against the violence and encouraged Nigeria to “protect innocent civilians of all faiths, including Muslims and including Christians.”
God, we pray for the protection of people who are vulnerable—including Muslims and including Christians. We long for abundant resources for all, but know that too many people face the reality of a scarcity of food and water. We pray for peace, Lord, in Nigeria, and for hope for those who fear the future.