25 Prayers to Pray for Indian Christians Right Now

By Published on May 18, 2024

“If the current government stays in power, there are chances that India could undergo a complete transformation into a Hindu nationalist state. India will be absolutely intolerant to Christians and other religious minorities.”

This sobering statement from Open Doors representative Priya Sharma in India should bring believers to their knees in prayer for the estimated 60 million Christians in India — brothers and sisters in Christ. Open Doors serves persecuted Christians in more than 70 countries, working with churches and local partners to provide Bibles, Christian materials, training, livelihood skills, and advocacy.

India has risen from No. 28 in 2014 to No. 11 on the 2024 World Watch List — Open Doors’ annual list of the top 50 countries where Christians face the most extreme persecution.

“In the past 10 years, Hindu extremists have openly threatened to eliminate Christianity and other minority religions in India,” Priya says. “There have been open statements of hatred and threats against Christians. Pastors, leaders, and lay Christians have been killed and attacked brutally in broad daylight and the accused are allowed to go free, without any punishment.”

As critical elections, which began on April 19, continue over the next month in India, Open Doors is calling for worldwide prayer. Here are 25 specific prayers believers can pray right now for their Christian sisters and brothers.

Targeted Prayers

1. Pray for India’s state and national elections. The election outcomes are crucial and will indicate if the situation for Christians will intensify further or help create better conditions for the church in India.

2. Pray that whoever wins the election would pursue freedom for people of all faiths. If a radical Hindu nationalist government wins the elections, there is a high probability of a national anti-conversion law, which could encourage extremists to use the law against Christians even further.

3. Pray for a fair and peaceful election process and that people would not be influenced by propaganda. Pray that India’s estimated 60 million Christians would be bold and exercise their right to vote in these critical elections.

4. Ask God to be with the 11 million election workers. They must ensure that a polling station is 2 kilometers from every habitation, often meaning dangerous treks across deserts, jungles, and an ocean to ensure every eligible Indian can vote.

5. Pray that India’s elections would not be used as platforms to discredit Christianity and falsely accuse believers. Ask God to place His hand over these elections.

6. Pray specifically that the elected government would work for the welfare of the people. Ask that they would listen to the needs of minority groups like Christians who are treated unjustly.

7. Pray Philippians 4:6-7 over Indian believers. Pray they will “be anxious for nothing” and will experience God’s comfort and His peace guarding them in these times of fear and uncertainty.

8. Thank God for the growing unity among believers over the election. “Believers are arranging prayer chains, fasting and hosting prayer meetings for a moral, ethical, and righteous government to come to power,” says Priya. Pray that God would use these elections and His church in India to expand and advance His Kingdom.

9. Pray for courage, strength, and favor for pastors and leaders who are ready to preach the Gospel unmoved by the results of the elections. Whatever the outcome, pray that Christians have a place to worship freely.

10. Where persecution is rising, the Gospel is spreading. Ask God to sustain this. Over the past few years, a large number of house churches have been started. Pray that this movement would multiply exponentially.

11. Pray God would protect house churches. The increasing numbers of house churches catch the attention of Hindu extremists, making them easy targets for violence. Pray that God would surround these homes of small gatherings with His angels.

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12. Ask God to give strength to those wounded and traumatized by the violence in Manipur State. The world was horrified in mid-2023 when violence erupted between the Kuki and Meitei tribes. Pray for comfort for the families of the estimated 70 Christians killed in the attacks.

13. Pray with 50,000 Manipur Christians forced to flee their homes when the attacks began. Many remain displaced, still scattered across relief camps. Pray they would sense the worldwide Church praying for and with them.

14. Ask God to help bring about healing and lasting peace in this troubled region. Pray for God’s hand of restoration over His people and their churches.

15. Pray for Christian leaders who risk their lives to serve Jesus. Most lead house churches and can face beatings, false accusations, and destruction of their homes. Ask God to strengthen their faith as they carry out their vision.

16. Pray that God would sustain two leaders who risk so much to serve Him. A violent attack put husband-and-wife church leaders Narendran and Kavita in the hospital, but it could not stop their ministry. Pray that God would continue to strengthen them and bless their obedience to the Great Commission.

17. Thank God for the testimony of brave Indian believers! Narendran shares: “God’s people stand with us in our troubles. You support us through prayer and encourage us to keep going. Without you, fear may have taken hold of us.” Praise God for this powerful testimony.

18. Pray for the couple’s traumatized children and Christians in the village who are afraid of returning to church. Pray 2 Timothy 1:7 over them.

19. Pray for the healing of traumatized Indian believers. When churches are attacked, many times the believers are also beaten or arrested, causing inevitable trauma and ultimately, a crisis of faith. Pray these believers would seek trauma support from Open Doors’ local partners.

20. Pray for strength for families of house church leaders who are arrested on false charges because of their faith. When these leaders suffer, their families do too, as their livelihood and status in society are threatened.

21. Pray for churches closed down by Hindu extremists. Pray these congregations can one day gather again for worship and that in the meantime, God would lead these believers to new faith communities.

22. Ask God to change the hearts of Hindu extremists, so they will know the one true God and His unconditional love for them. We know God transforms lives.

23. Pray that God would allow a new openness to take root in India. Indian Christians say their greatest desire is having a safe place to worship. Pray for freedom of religion in India and that all could seek God and practice their faith without fear.

24. Pray that Hindu nationalists would accept Christians as fellow Indians and allow Indians of all faiths to flourish. Ask God to protect and grow His church in every part of India.

25. Pray that the worldwide Church would be vigilant to keep its eyes and ears open to the suffering of its sisters and brothers in India.

 

Ryan Brown serves as president and CEO of Open Doors US, one of 25 national Open Doors International (ODI) bases located around the world. Founded in 1955, Open Doors has continued to serve persecuted Christians in more than 70 countries, and is known for its annual World Watch List, the ranking of the top 50 countries where Christians face the most extreme persecution.

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