While blasphemy laws in Pakistan have made religious freedom difficult, ministry leaders in the predominantly Muslim nation say the situation has actually improved.
"Christians have never had it better," Strategic World Impact's Kevin Turner told Mission Network News (MNN) during a recent interview. "They've never had more freedom because [President Pervez] Musharraf is not afraid to stand up against the Islamic religious leaders of the country. And so, it's really actually working out quite well for believers here, relatively speaking."
SWI, an Oklahoma-based ministry that reaches out to refugees and nomadic Muslims with the Gospel, is currently building a school in Toba Tek Singh. "They have very little access to education here and if they do get educated, especially through the government schools, it's compulsory that they learn Islam as well," Turner commented. So, it's a great opportunity for a lot of the Christians to get an education that's Christ-centered."
While security forces in Pakistan have been busy tackling militants linked to the Al-Qaeda network along the Afghan border, the school construction project continues. Turner says they still need $9,000 to finish the school, which will be a bright spot in the community. "We're using this also as an opportunity to educate poor Muslims and Hindus that want to attend the school and by this we use it as a means of outreach to show them the love of Christ," Turner added.
"We have seen Muslims, Hindus and nominal Christians actually born again. It's a wonderful opportunity to seize the day and stand on the ground of the Gospel."
Most recently, Pakistan has been has been one of the countries drawing the world's attention as many believe Osama Bin Laden is hiding in the predominately Muslim nation.