The following report was published by International Christian Concern
Longstanding tensions between Muslims and Christians in Buseresere, a town in Tanzania’s northwestern Geita region, flared on Feb. 11 after a cleric demanded the closure of Christian butcheries in the area.
Pastor Mathayo Kachili of the Tanzania Assemblies of God Church (TAG) was killed while trying to intervene in an attack by Muslim youths against Christian butchers. “A group of Muslim youths, armed with machetes, big clubs, knives and sticks assaulted the Christians [butchers] and seriously beat them,” ICC’s source in Tanzania said.
“When the Muslims saw [Pastor Kachili] they brutally attacked him,” witnesses said. Pastor Kachili died on the scene as a result of this attack.
Six days later, Father Evarist Mushi, a Catholic priest, was murdered on the island of Zanzibar off Tanzania’s east coast when two men, presumed to be Muslim extremists, confronted him at the entrance of his church. “One of the attackers shot him in the head,” said police spokesman Mohammed Mhina.
The Vatican’s Fides news agency reported that a threatening text message was received by local bishops and priests after the shooting. The text read, “We thank our young men, trained in Somalia, for killing an infidel. Many more will die. We will burn homes and churches. We have not finished: at Easter, be prepared for disaster.” The text message was signed by an extremist group calling itself the ‘Muslim Renewal.’
As you prepare to celebrate Easter with family, friends, and church please remember the faithful believers in Zanzibar and Tanzania. Please pray for the enemy’s plans of violence to be thwarted and for the safety and protection of all Christians in those regions, including pastors and layworkers in the churches. Pray that they would be able to celebrate the Savior’s resurrection with joy and hope, not mourn the day in fear of their enemies.