Source: Interserve, January 2018
A report in the Finnish media says that within the Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Church, Muslims are changing allegiance to Christ in numbers estimated to be in the hundreds over recent years. What’s going on?
These people are from Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, and other Muslim countries. The numbers are sufficient to prompt Lutheran parishes to establish special confirmation classes for Muslim immigrants seeking to follow Jesus.
The report says that about 20 Afghan men are currently attending “pre-confirmation” classes at a parish center in Imatra in Eastern Finland. The teachers use a New Testament in the Dari language (a Persian dialect), which is spoken in Afghanistan.
While some who are seeking to change allegiance said that disillusionment with Islam was the key reason, others said they felt life as a “Christian” would help them fit into Finnish society, according to Sputnik News, which also speculates that there could be an underlying reason to guard themselves against possible deportation.
In Finland 4.1 million of the 5.5 million people are members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church and a June 2016 Guardian article cited anecdotal data of rising Christian church attendance by Muslims right across the Eurozone.
Take for instance, Trinity church in the Berlin suburb of Steglitz, which saw its congregation grow from 150 to 700 due to people from Muslim families changing faith allegiance to Jesus. The Austrian Catholic Church also saw its applications for adult baptism swell by nearly 70% in the first three months of 2016.
» Full story based on an article published in the Christian Post in July.
» See also these other stories related to global migration: Christian Convert from Iran Converting Muslims in Sweden (Fox News), Four Ways to Meet a Refugee (Faith and Forced Migration), and What Christians in the US Can Learn from Immigrant Pastors (Christianity Today).