“Many churches have already been closed down by order of drug cartels and there are reports of people being forced to inform them whenever they visit certain churches”
A Christian couple who heads a church in downtown Cuernavaca, a Mexican city in the state of Morelos, and whose names will not be cited for security reasons, have mentioned to one of the Open Doors collaborators that organized crime in that region is charging taxes on church. “Having to pay drug cartels to keep the church open has been something very common in this region,” explains the leader who has been working in Mexico for more than 15 years. According to him, this is the most common form of extortion that has not been denounced.
“According to government officials, only 10% of cases are formally brought to court. And that is the most significant threat to the life of the Mexican church, “said the collaborator. Beside extortion, comes the kidnapping that is also another threat that prevails against the faithful. “These criminal activities have been the largest source of income for traffickers and have frightened Christians. Watching a service is a dangerous practice. The worshipers of Jesus are also at risk of being attacked violently at any time. There are already areas where church services are not allowed, “he warns.
“Many churches have already been closed down by order of drug cartels and there are reports of people being forced to inform them whenever they visit certain churches. Preaching the gospel in places where organized crime has an advantage is really a very risky endeavor. Speaking against injustice, whether publicly or from the pulpit, can result in various forms of intimidation, including beatings, attacks on homes or churches, and murders, “the collaborator explains. According to local sources, in the last decade, 31 Christian leaders have been killed in Mexico, possibly because of organized crime. Pray for persecuted Christians in Mexico.
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