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A vigil marking the fifth anniversary of the forced disappearance of Malaysian Pastor Raymond Koh was held Sunday 13 February in the Multi-Purpose Hall of the Council of Churches of Malaysia (CCM) in Kuala Lumpur.

According to Voice of the Martyrs Korea Representative Dr Hyun Sook Foley, the vigil is held annually by family members and friends of Pastor Koh with the support and participation of Malaysian Christians and Christian groups around the world.

On 13 February 2017, Pastor Koh’s car was surrounded, and he was kidnapped by at least 15 masked men driving black four-wheel-drive vehicles. Since then, there has been no sign of him or the car he was driving.

“Disappearance and silence are tools commonly used by many persecutors, especially governments,” says Representative Foley. “A Christian leader is kidnapped or imprisoned, and then authorities say nothing. They know that the longer there is no news about what happened, the more likely it is for the media to stop reporting and for the public to lose interest. Vigils like this one hold the government accountable while also reminding Christians to continue to pray for Pastor Koh and his family.”

According to Representative Foley, in March 2020 the Koh family filed a civil suit against the Malaysian police and government. Trial dates are currently set for December 2022 and June 2023 after being repeatedly postponed allegedly due to COVID-related delays. “The family has patiently endured unfair questions and unresponsive officials for years,” says Representative Foley. “Even when Pastor Koh’s wife, Susanna, first filed a missing person report about her husband, they asked if he had encouraged Muslims to convert to Christianity. Authorities were more concerned about Pastor Koh’s Christian faith than his kidnapping. The civil suit is the final step in attempting to compel the government to fully disclose what it knows and how it participated in the disappearance of Pastor Koh.”

“It is believed that Pastor Koh’s kidnapping may be related to several prior threats he received,” says Representative Foley. “Pastor Koh ran a charity organisation called Harapan Komuniti, or ‘Hope Community’, which cared for impoverished single mothers, children, drug addicts, and those who were diagnosed with AIDS. Some Muslims were upset by the programme, accusing it of being merely a trick to convert people to Christianity.”

After Pastor Koh’s disappearance, the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM) began an independent investigation. In May 2018, a police whistle-blower named Sergeant Shamzaini Mohamed Daud came forward, claiming that the Malaysian Special Branch (Cawangan Khas) was involved in Koh’s disappearance. Within that same month, Sergeant Daud lodged a police report denying he had made such claims.

“So far, every witness who has spoken has been silenced,” says Representative Foley.

“In accordance with the spirit of Hebrews 13:3, we must continue to stand in solidarity with Pastor Raymond Koh and his family and refuse to let his voice be silenced or his disappearance remain unresolved.”

Source: The Voice of the Martyrs Korea

Let us pray.

  • Pray that the truth of the case will finally be brought to light and that his wife Susannah, will finally receive the answers she has been seeking.
  • Ask God for His protection to be over pastors and evangelists in Malaysia.
  • Ask God to somehow use this case of Raymond Koh and the faithful witness of his wife, family and the Christian community, to build the church in Malaysia.