Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Praise report: persecuted hostages freed from Boko Haram

May 22, 2024 by Abigail Hart in Persecuted Christians in Nigeria

We thank the Lord for this incredible news! While the hostages were tentatively transported to government housing and are expected to return home at some point, an uncertain future awaits some of these precious sisters in Christ.

The fate of persecuted hostages

Many of the women—who were widowed, kidnapped and held hostage for years by the extremists—now have no spouses, homes or livelihoods to return to. And some have several young mouths to feed after being subjected to sexual assaults and forced marriages in the Boko Haram compound.

To secure their release, the Nigerian authorities infiltrated Sambisa Forest near Cameroon and Niger—where the extremist group maintains a stronghold to execute strategic attacks. When the successful rescue operation concluded after several days, Nigerian authorities stated that the hostages appeared to be very weary and were wearing tattered clothing. Some had been in captivity for several months while others stated that they had been held for a number of years. One of the freed captives, Nala*, said that she longed to escape but feared that her children would be harmed—or that she would be tortured if apprehended.

Despite the chaos of Islamic extremism in Nigeria, the Lord is at work among His people. Global Christian Relief and our partners are on the ground in multiple Nigerian refugee camps, meeting these needs of courageous women and innocent children who have been negatively impacted by Boko Haram. And support from the Body of Christ makes it possible. 

Administering aid to persecuted Christians in Nigeria

For example, our displaced sister in Christ named Esther received a small business stipend from GCR partners in order to start her own bakery and snack shop. Now, through the generosity of others, she has money to provide for her family. Esther says, “It means a lot to my family. With the profits I make, I can purchase books for my children and support them. I can cover my children’s school fees.”

Watch the video below as GCR’s President & CEO, Dr. David Curry, visits Esther in a Nigerian refugee camp to encourage her entrepreneurial success after so much personal hardship.

Another displaced sister, Deborah, escaped Boko Haram after nearly two years in captivity, arriving sick and exhausted at a refugee camp. Deborah says, “GCR’s partners assisted me and provided for all my needs. Everything … food, water, my children’s health care, shelter, a bed to lie on … May God repay you for your generosity!”

Through your partnership, we can give something intangible to our suffering sisters in Christ: hope. Rush a gift now.

Ultimately, through our charitable endeavors in Nigeria, the team at Global Christian Relief strives to obey God’s command in James 1:27 to care for widows and orphans. Please join us in a prayer for these former hostages now.

A prayer for the persecuted hostages

Dear Lord, the enemy sought to steal from Your children in Nigeria, but You made a way for their escape. We are reminded of Ezekiel 34:12, which says, “… I will find my sheep and rescue them from all the places where they were scattered on that dark and cloudy day.” And so we praise You mightily for this good work.

Father, we ask You to give our weary sisters and their children rest after this horrific ordeal. Fill their hearts with hope as they look to start their lives again, and meet their every need. God, heal the scars of this terrible trauma and remind our persecuted family members that the love of Jesus Christ transcends every trouble of this world. Amen.

About the author
Abigail Hart is a passionate advocate for persecuted Christians around the globe. Through her work with Global Christian Relief, a nonprofit dedicated to strengthening vulnerable believers worldwide, she shares the courageous journeys of steadfast believers who serve Jesus where faith costs the most. Read the latest Christian persecution stories on our website and learn more at

*Photo Caption: Displaced Christian women gather in a refugee camp during GCR’s visit to Nigeria. Please note that names are sometimes changed to ensure personal safety and anonymity. 

In its violent quest to establish Shariah law in Nigeria, Boko Haram has left 35,000 people dead and 2.1 million displaced—including countless persecuted Christians. Vulnerable believers like Esther are often left widowed and must seek help in refugee camps. Global Christian Relief and our partners are on the ground, providing food, clean water, trauma counseling, medical care, Bibles and more—whatever it takes in their time of need. We also provide skills training and small business stipends so these precious women of God can provide for themselves and their children. Please rush your best gift today to provide emergency relief to hard-pressed Christians in Nigeria and beyond.

Give now