A Christian woman newly converted from Islam was recently murdered by her Muslim husband who was angered by her rebellious actions.

Christian persecution watchdog Open Doors USA recently published the report that relates the story of this tragic…yet ultimately triumphant event surrounding an Ethiopian woman, her family, and her faith.

Workitu, an Ethiopian, converted from Islam to Christianity this past August. Her defiant decision angered her husband as well as other Muslim elders in their community. The husband, in fact, threatened repeatedly to kill her unless she returned to Islam. Workitu refused to the yield to the threats and stood by her new Christian faith.

She reported the death threats to leaders of her church and was advised to report the matter to the local authorities in writing. She subsequently sent a letter to the police and local government offices in which she detailed the death threats and requested protection.

Sources said officials denied ever receiving her letter.

In March of this year, Workitu was confronted by her husband and a neighbor who beat her mercilessly. Other villagers took her to the local hospital where she died five days later from the injuries she sustained.

Her death, while undeniably tragic, was not in vain. Her two sons, Mustafa, in his 20s, and Kedir, 17, witnessed their mother’s suffering and her steadfast devotion to her new Christian faith. They were inspired to follow her lead and embrace Jesus Christ. One of the brothers even brought along his friend.

“Their mother was the only Christian in their family and the boys told the Christian leaders they want to know more about the Lord their mother worshipped,” the Open Doors USA report says.

Ethiopia is ranked No. 18 on Open Door’s World Watch List of countries where Christians face the most persecution.

“Ethiopia has many tribes…[who are] not necessarily favorable to Christianity,” the group says. “The ruling party in the country has blocked all the channels for freedom of expression and assembly, and has also tried to control all religious institutions in a bid to curb dissent.”

It’s inspiring to see how even in the darkest circumstances where a light is extinguished, the flame refuses to die.

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