How many Christians are there in Libya?
There are 36,200 Christians in Libya, from a population of over 6.5 million. This is a tiny percentage, but the number of Libyan Christians is even smaller (roughly 150) – because almost all the 36,200 are migrant workers.
Why are Christians persecuted in Libya?
Libyan Christians have to keep their faith entirely secret, and churches for Libyans are forbidden. It’s illegal to share the gospel with Muslims, and Christians who publicly express their faith or share it with others risk being arrested or attacked by their families and communities. Without a single central government, much of Libya is effectively lawless, adding to the violent persecution and pressure felt by Christians in the country.
What’s life like for Christians in Libya?
There is no freedom of speech, no equal treatment of Christians, no recognition of the church, and no churches are allowed to be built. While Christian migrant workers are allowed to meet and worship, they face discrimination and are at risk of attack by Islamic extremists.
Libyan Christians from a Muslim background face violence from their families and communities to renounce their faith. Like Maizah.* She and her family fled to Egypt when civil war came to Libya, and there she met a woman who told her about Jesus. Back in Libya, the Christians she secretly met with were arrested and she fled again. She thought her family would protect her when they tracked her down – but they beat her, and tried to force her into marriage with a Muslim. Luckily she managed to get away to a safe house, and is now safe in another country.
How can I help Christians in Libya?
Please keep praying for your brothers and sisters in Libya. Your gifts and prayers make an enormous difference to those following Jesus no matter the cost.
In cooperation with local partners and churches, Open Doors supports the church in North Africa through training, literature distribution, socio-economic development and advocacy.
*Name changed for security reasons
“The neighbour blessed me and said, ‘You will be a candle for Libya; shine for the people of Libya.’”Maizah, a Christian from a Muslim background
Lord, we pray for our brothers and sisters in Libya as they face intense persecution. We pray that You would break through in that nation, giving opportunities for believers to meet together and to share the good news of Jesus. Protect Your children from violence and change the hearts of militants intent on harming them.