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According to church tradition, 29 June marks the martyrdom of the Apostle Paul. Christians around the world will take time on that day to honour the legacy of those who have sacrificed their lives for the advancement of the Gospel. This year, we would like to honour Pastor Philip Msasa.

Kenya is predominantly Christian, but several tribal groups in the north remain largely unreached, and much of the coastal region is predominantly Muslim. Additionally, in the region known as Greater Somalia in north-eastern Kenya, 90% of the population is ethnically Somali and fervently Muslim. In these areas, Christian missionaries from other parts of Kenya and converts from Islam are often attacked and have been killed. There are a few churches in these regions, but their activities are severely limited by the local communities.

Sarah Ambetsa’s husband, Phillip, was killed in 2014 as he shared the Sunday morning message at the Joy in Jesus Church in Mombasa. Attackers entered the church that morning and began shooting at worshippers, killing the pastor and six others. Sarah was injured. Thereafter, the church stopped meeting and Sarah had no way of supporting herself and her two young boys.

Phillip’s wife, Sarah, and their two boys.

Assistance from VOM helped Sarah move to a new town and establish a cloth business. A VOM worker who recently visited her said, “The prayers and support Sarah received through VOM have really helped her recover quickly from the loss of her husband. She has managed well, taking care of the boys and also managing her small business.” Please continue to pray for Sarah and her boys, aged nine and four.

Sarah recently wrote to VOM, “I want to take this opportunity to thank Almighty God for how he has taken care of me and my two kids. It has been a hard task to cope after the death of my husband. You have played a big role to make sure that my life has really changed and healed.” Sarah continues to require medical care.

VOM supports the widows of Christian martyrs, pastors working in hostile areas, and sustainability projects for believers who have been ostracised because of their faith. For more information about our projects in these areas, click on the button below.