Haile Nayzgi, one several Christians imprisoned in Eritrea for more than 18 years

Haile Nayzgi, one several Christians imprisoned in Eritrea for more than 18 years

Eritrea is governed by a totalitarian regime that seeks to control every aspect of life. In 2002, the government outlawed every form of religion except Islam, Orthodox Christianity, Roman Catholicism and the Lutheran Church. All other religious groups are illegal, and the government maintains control of approved churches.

Many Christians have been arrested without warning, and imprisoned Christians are not given a trial or allowed to see their families. Conditions inside these prisons are some of the harshest in the world. Some 200 to 250 believers are believed to remain in prison, though it is unclear if all are still alive.

Christian prisoners are provided meager rations and often held in shipping containers in extreme desert conditions for years. Several Eritrean Christian leaders, like Haile Nayzgi, have been imprisoned since 2004.


Lerm and Dow are rebuilding their life after being evicted from their village.

On April 4, 2022, Lerm and his wife, Dow, accepted Christ and started to attend church. A few months later, Dow’s father, who was the head of a nearby village in their province in northern Laos, found out and demanded that they renounce Christ.

When they refused, he used his influence to have them evicted from their village and took away the income and food supplies they usually earned from farm work. Lerm asked his own father to take them in but was rejected because his father feared losing his government job.

Lerm, Dow, and their children lost everything when they were evicted. They now live in a temporary hut on the land of another Christian brother, but their faith has remained strong.

About Michael J Erdel

Mike is a pastor with The Assembly of God Fellowship. He is the lead pastor at Encounter Church in Fostoria Ohio. His desire is to encourage the Church of Jesus Christ, and declare God's hope through His Son Jesus, to a world which is long on excuses and short on hope. Mike has experienced the truth that when we kneel before Christ, surrendering to Him as Savior and LORD, being led and empowered by His Spirit. To Jesus Christ be all glory and honor.
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