EGYPT — In Baher’s* community in Egypt, Egyptian Christians are only offered dangerous jobs in the quarry. After two terrible accidents, Baher felt hopeless and alone. An Open Doors partner is helping him see lasting hope.
*Name changed for security reasons.
I started working as a quarryman when I was 13. That was a terrible time of my life. I was all alone. I couldn’t continue going to school as I had to drop out to care for my father and elder brother. We could not earn enough to live. We had no other source of money than working in the quarry. Yet before I had finished my first week, I was injured.
Christians in Beya’s village in Egypt have suffered persecution for years, meaning that there are few options for employment.
I am 25 years old and I live with my parents. I am the breadwinner of my family. They cannot serve the household needs, and this became my responsibility. My brother was helping me. However, when he died, the situation worsened. We were unable to determine the precise cause of his death, but the doctor stated that this was due to ‘fine dust from quarry operations’. Working at a quarry inevitably leads to death. My arm was cut by the quarry’s cutting machine, and left me needing 65 stitches. Helplessly, I saw my arm coming away from my body then I passed out altogether. For a long time after the incident, I blamed God. I was questioning Him, “Why, out of everyone else, did You let that happen to me? And now, how can I support my family?” I was depressed for almost a year and did not attend church. Following my injury and time to recover, the ministry encouraged me to pull myself together. So I bought a cart, a donkey cart. I began trading sugar cane and transporting manure.
Bayer’s business was unsuccessful due to discrimination for his Christian faith and disability.
The young people in our village are always under pressure. They are obliged to work at the quarry since there are no other options. They are stressed because they have no other sources of income but this job. The ministry helped me and gave me livestock to begin a small business. I started raising animals as a source of income. The ministry actually stood by my side and helped me to recover. So, my family and I shifted our focus from blaming God to praising Him. Despite the fact that I can’t read, I learned to listen to God’s Word in the discipleship group. I learned who God is, and they helped me to go on with my life. Jesus is everything to me. Please pray for me and those who are enduring similar pain in their life.
*Name changed for security purposes.
About Open Doors UK
For over 60 years, Open Doors UK has worked in the world’s most oppressive countries, empowering Christians who are persecuted for their beliefs. Open Doors equips persecuted Christians in more than 60 countries through programs like Bible & Gospel Development, Women & Children Advancement, and Christian Community Restoration.