Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here
Start your mornings with the good, the beautiful, the true... Subscribe to Aleteia's free newsletter!
Sign me up!

Not Prepared to Donate?

Here are 5 ways you can still help Aleteia:

  1. Pray for our team and the success of our mission
  2. Talk about Aleteia in your parish
  3. Share Aleteia content with friends and family
  4. Turn off your ad blockers when you visit
  5. Subscribe to our free newsletter and read us daily
Thank you!
Team Aleteia


10 - India

The world's second most populous country entered the top 10 for the first time. Since the current ruling party took control in 2014, Christians have been treated as second-class citizens, often denied access to local water supplies and government-subsidized groceries. To accept Jesus in India can bring the wrath of Hindu extremists down upon one's entire family.

9 - Iran

Iranian society is governed by Islamic law, which heavily restricts the rights and job oportunities of Christians. Iran views Christianity as an attempt by the west to undermine the authority of the Islamic regime, and thus Christians are targeted. Church services in Persian, the national language, are not allowed, and every Christian service is attended with the knowledge that the government could break in and arrest the entire congregation.

8 - Yemen

The civil war in Yemen has opened the door for widespread abuse of the country's small Christian community. Humanitarian relief is quickly divided among Islamic communities, distributed through mosques and denied to Christians. Even private worship is risky as it could lead to Christians' deaths if discovered. They face persecution from the authorities, their families, and radical Islamic groups who kill those who refuse to denounce Christ.

7 - Eritrea

Since 1993, President Afwerki has led a brutal regime that commits massive human rights violations. The government is known to conduct raids on houses and imprison hundreds of Christians in inhumane conditions, such as packing them into storage containers in scorching heat. Christians from non-mainline church groups, such as evangelicals, face the harshest persecution.

6 - Sudan

Sudan has been ruled as an Islamic state since 1989. The last year has seen many Christians arrested and their churches demolished, and many other houses of worship still sit on an official waiting list to be destroyed. Sudan is especially hard on those who convert from Islam, to such an extent that Christian converts often do not raise their children in the faith, because the kids may inadvertently reveal their parents' conversion.

5 - Pakistan

The Christians of Pakistan continue to live in fear of the government's strict anti-conversion laws. A prime example of this is the case of Asia Bibi, which has seen the Christian wife and mother sit on death-row for a decade. Even after the government acquitted her of blasphemy charges, she remains a target of radical Islamists who have gained political ground in recent months. Christians are treated as second-class citizens. It is estimated that 700 girls and women each year are abducted, raped, and forced to convert to Islam and marry Muslim men.

4 - Libya

The level of violence against Christians in Libya is very high, and Christians in Libya are subjected to violent treatment. Islamic militant groups especially target Libyan Christians with Muslim backgrounds. The country is also home to many migrant workers who are routinely attacked, sexually assaulted, and detained. The tortures only become worse if Christian faith is discovered.

3 - Somalia

It is estimated that 99 percent of Somalia is Muslim, and minority religions are harshly persecuted. Christian converts are the most prized targets of militants and are often killed on the spot when discovered. In recent years anti-Christian sentiment has only grown.

2 - Afghanistan

Afghanistan is an Islamic state by constitution and conversion is comparable to treason. Many converts are considered insane to leave the Islamic faith and many who are not executed are sent to psychiatric wards. The country is home to various radical groups that seek and kill Christians wherever they can find them.

1 - North Korea

The most dangerous country for Christians is North Korea. This isolated country has forced its people to idolize the Kim family, which has held power for three generations. All Christian worship must be conducted in secret, lest it draw attention. Authorities offer large incentives to anyone who reports a hidden Christian in the community. Because of the danger, communal prayer is non-existent.
Readers like you contribute to Aleteia's Mission.

Since our inception in 2012, Aleteia’s readership has grown rapidly worldwide. Our team is committed to a mission of providing articles that enrich, inspire and inform a Catholic life. That's why we want our articles to be freely accessible to everyone, but we need your help to do that. Quality journalism has a cost (more than selling ads on Aleteia can cover). That's why readers like you make a major difference by donating as little as $3 a month.