Two pastors were leaving All Saints’ Church in Peshawar, Pakistan, together after the 30 January service when their car was ambushed by gunmen riding a motorcycle.
Pastor William Siraj was fatally shot, and Pastor Patrick Naeem needed to be rushed to the hospital where he was treated and then released.
At last report, police were expanding their search for the attackers, though no one has claimed responsibility.
Government leaders have expressed their anger and determination to find those involved, stating that “the Christian community will not be left alone.”
The late Pastor William, a senior lay leader in the region, led worship at three different Church of Pakistan parishes. Pastor Patrick, the leader who miraculously survived the attack, serves as priest of All Saints’ Church. In 2013, this same church was the site of a suicide attack that left more than 80 Christians dead.
Even in her grief, Pastor William’s daughter was able to say,
“I praise God and am so proud that I am the daughter of a martyr and the wife of a martyr too.”
Her husband happened to be one of the victims of the 2013 attack.
Protestors have gathered to call upon the government to provide protection to the lives and properties of religious minorities in the country.
Sources: Kross Konnection, Voice of America, The Express Tribune, CTV News, Barnabas Fund, Dawn
Let us pray.
- Uphold Pastor William’s family and congregants as they mourn their loss. Pray this tragic loss will not be in vain but that it will somehow be used as a witness for the Gospel.
- Pray that those responsible for this attack will be held to account.
- Pray this situation will provide an opportunity for the perpetrators, and many other citizens in Pakistan, to discover the blessed hope that is found in Jesus Christ.