Data: Angriest (and Happiest) Countries, Dangerous Places

Sources: Various

Global Emotions

In 2022, Lebanon was ranked as the angriest country in the world, reported a recent story from Mission Network News, “The top five angriest countries last year include Turkey, Armenia, Iraq, and Afghanistan, with Lebanon in first place.”

They were quoting Gallup’s annual Global Emotions report, which assesses the emotional temperature of some 100 countries and presents findings in an interactive format. It includes both highs and lows, so you can see the least angry places, the places where more people report smiling or laughing, and more. Fascinating. Check it out.

Dangerous Places

Every year, the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) releases its Global Peace Index report. This report measures how dangerous or safe a nation is based on 23 different indicators, including political terror, deaths from internal conflict, and murder rate.

Read Most Dangerous Countries in the World 2023 (World Population Review). I bet you have visited at least one or two of them, though maybe not recently. And you may find more data you can use on the World Population Review website.

The latest IEP report, released in June, says global peacefulness has reached its lowest level in 15 years.

Book: Last Words of the Martyrs

Source: International Christian Concern

Last Words of the Martyrs: Life-Changing Spiritual Lessons from Believers Who Paid the Ultimate Price, by Jeff King (self-published), 2023. 182 pages.

Jeff King, since 2003 the president of a group serving persecuted Christians, tells and reflects on the stories of Christians who were martyred and those they left behind. He shares scripture and his own struggles to respond to what he sees and hears, and he calls on readers to turn from comfort and self-sufficiency to depend on God the way the persecuted do.

This is a short and well-crafted book though a challenging one. Nearly all the stories focus on Christians who were victims of Islamic extremists. The author paints a very dark picture of Islam and says we are currently in history’s third wave of Jihad. But he also explores how the intense suffering of the persecuted is key to the growth of the Church.

Learn more or purchase from International Christian Concern or elsewhere; looks like Amazon has a better price. Note that the book website includes a book trailer and other resources, including a study guide for small groups.

See also When Faith Is Forbidden: 40 Days on the Frontlines with Persecuted Christians (Voice of the Martyrs, 2021). That one is more of a devotional, it seems, but I have not read it.

Prayers: Liturgies for a Life Abroad

Source: Liturgies for Life Abroad

Sometimes we just don’t have the words. Praying back Scripture and the prayers of others can help.

Liturgies for a Life Abroad provides written prayers for those who find themselves living a life outside of their passport country and making a home in Christ. It includes both short “breath prayers” and longer liturgies by Heather Fallis. Lots of insight but minimal commentary make these relatable and sharable.

Follow the account on Instagram or Facebook.

For more resources to help us (and those we care about) thrive in cross-cultural life, explore and follow Global Trellis.

Training: Frontier Filmmaking Seminar Online

Source: Create International

Are you one of those people who gets worked up about the low quality of many Christian films? The Frontier Filmmaking Seminar Online is a fairly new, amazing way to train believers who want to follow the example of Jesus, using stories to increase peoples’ hunger and thirst for God’s kingdom. This eight-week online course has now trained more than 100 people from dozens of countries to create video stories with excellence. Many expat workers point national believers toward this class in order to equip them for better media creation.

The next course is coming up quickly, starting March 3 and going to May 2. The cost is US$250. Some scholarships are available.

Create International is a global ministry of Youth with a Mission (YWAM).

Learn more or sign up. Looks like there is an in-person version of this course coming up this summer. Can you make it to Mozambique?

Events: March Conferences, Training, and More

Source: Missions Catalyst Events Calendar

March 1-2, MOVE Conference (Marietta, GA, USA). An annual event sponsored by Johnson Ferry Baptist Church but designed for anyone passionate about local, national, and international missions.

March 3-5, The Gathering (Tulsa, OK, USA). An annual gathering of missional professionals to plan, pray, and prepare to reach 15 of the last unreached people groups. Sponsored by Priority 15.

March 3 to May 2, Frontier Filmmaking Seminar (online). Learn to make cross-cultural evangelistic films with Create International.

March 6 to April 1, COMPASS (Palmer Lake, CO, USA). Language and culture acquisition provided by Missionary Training International.

March 6 to May 22, Encountering the World of Islam (St. Louis, MO, USA). Also available in other formats and languages; new online classes start several times a year. 

March 6 to July 9, Perspectives on the World Christian Movement (online). New online classes begin regularly.

March 9, How May We Best Care For and Honor Women Serving Overseas? (online). Webinar from Missio Nexus.

March 7-9, Standards Introductory Workshop (online). This 10-hour seminar is designed to help short-term mission leaders make their mission trips better; provided by MissionExcellence, a ministry of MissionWorks.

March 12, Call to Prayer Virtual Prayer Gathering (online). Join others to engage the Muslim world through prayer on the second Sunday of each month. Special guest: Dr. Nabeel T. Jabbour.

March 13-17, Storytelling Training (online). Get hands-on experience with oral Bible storytelling with five three-hour sessions provided by Story Runners.

March 16-18, Christian Community Health Conference (Covington, KY, USA). Provided by the Christian Community Health Foundation.

March 16-18, IMPACT Conference (Atlanta, GA, USA). The annual event from Indo-Malay Partners in Action.

March 18 to April 18, 30 Days of Prayer for the Muslim World (international). Consider using materials from or

March 20, The Most Important Prerequisite: Passion for Jesus (online). Hour-long webinar from Frontiers USA; join live or watch the replay a week later.

March 20-24, Kairos Course (Louisville, KY, USA). An interactive overview of the plans and purposes of God. This intensive version of the course is offered in partnership with Team Expansion. Offered again October 16-20.

March 22-23, Men and Women Leading Together: Pursuing Godly Partnerships (Kansas City, MO, USA). Event organized by the Women’s Development Track at Missio Nexus.

March 23-25, Ralph D. Winter Memorial Lectureship (Pasadena, CA, USA and online). Beyond Contextualization: Crossing Religious and Cultural Boundaries. Event sponsored by Frontier Ventures.

March 24-25, The Journey Deepens (Beaverton, OR, USA). Retreat provided by MissionNext to help you deepen your walk with God and discern next steps.

March 26 to April 21, Equipping for Cross-Cultural Life and Ministry (Union Mills, NC, USA). Followed by a Language Learning Accelerator course from April 23 to May 5. Provided by the Center for Intercultural Training.

March 27-31, Abide Debriefing (Joplin, MO, USA). Help for moving forward with hope and momentum; from TRAIN International (events held throughout the year).

March 31 to April 1, The Mobilized Church Workshop (Roanoke, VA, USA). From Sixteen:Fifteen. Offered in various locations throughout the year.
View the complete calendar, updated regularly. We welcome your submissions.

World News Briefs: Turkey and Syria, Eritrea, Nigeria, Australia

  1. Turkey and Syria: Join Us in Prayer
  2. Eritrea: “Like a Giant Prison” Following More Arrests
  3. Nigeria: February 25 Presidential Election—This Is a Spiritual Battle!
  4. Australia: A Heartfelt Plea for More Christians in the Outback
  5. World: Can We Have Some Good News?

Read or share the email edition or scroll down for more.

Turkey and Syria: Join Us in Prayer

Source: Brigada Today, February 11, 2023

There have been earthquakes with higher magnitudes (more profound shaking). And obviously, there was the December 26, 2004 earthquake centered in Sumatra, and the 2005 quake in Kashmir. There was the Ancash quake (Peru) in 1970, the Great Tangshan quake (also 1970), the 2008 quake in Sichuan, Yogyakarta 2006 (Indonesia), the 1990 Manjil-Rudbar earthquake, the 1988 Armenian earthquake, and Haiti in 2010. But the [February 6] quake in Turkey and Syria has to rank one of the top-ten deadliest earthquakes of this century and among the top 20 of the last 100 years.

As you’re reading this, would you please pause with us for prayer for those who have lost loved ones, those who are homeless (in the dead of winter), and all who are injured (with hospitals overwhelmed)? We might not have been in the disaster, but we can ask God to be present for the healing.

Read the full story. Looks like Turkey’s death toll for this earthquake has now surpassed that of the huge quake of 1939 (Middle East Eye).

An eyewitness says, “The sorrow and despair across the whole country are almost palpable. Entire families have been lost. Almost everyone across the country knows someone who was personally in the earthquake.”

Pray with the latest Prayercast video and read ministry reports.

This event is getting much coverage. A few that caught our eyes:

Eritrea: “Like a Giant Prison” Following More Arrests

Source: Release International, January 30, 2023

Another wave of Christians has been arrested in Eritrea, bringing the total imprisoned for their faith to more than 400. One former prisoner describes systematic torture and a vision of Christ that sustained her.

A partner of UK-based Release International, which supports the persecuted church, reports that 44 Christians—39 women and five men—were seized as they were gathering in their homes. The group is being held at Mai Serwa prison on the outskirts of the capital, Asmara.

“Eritrea is like a giant prison,” says Release International partner Dr. Berhane Asmelash. “The country is filled with jails. It is like North Korea.” He estimates 415 Christians are now in prison for their faith.

The complete article includes the story of Twen, a woman arrested when she was just 21 years old and held for 16 years until her recent release.

Nigeria: February 25 Presidential Election—This Is a Spiritual Battle!

Source: Religious Liberty Prayer Bulletin, February 1, 2023

On February 25, Nigerians will elect a new president amid gross insecurity, escalating Islamic terror, and soaring ethnic and religious tensions. Normally a two-horse race, this year is different with four leading candidates hailing from the four corners of Nigeria and its three leading tribes. Three are Muslim, one is Christian. Many fear the presidential election could cause the country to blow apart. Should that happen, it would trigger a crisis of monumental, even genocidal proportions, especially for Nigeria’s long-suffering Christians in the volatile mixed Middle Belt and predominately Muslim North.

Labour’s Peter Obi—an ethnic Igbo from the southeast and the only Christian among the four main candidates—is leading in the polls but unlikely to win in the first round, meaning Nigeria is heading for its first-ever presidential runoff. Analysts anticipate that thugs in the southwest and fundamentalist Muslims across the north will attack polling stations in opposition strongholds and Igbo residential areas to depress voter turnout there. Lagos, Kano, and Kaduna have been identified as states where the risk of electoral violence is extreme.

Read the full article and pray. RLPB is doing a whole series on Nigeria.