Help me to keep praying

Esther Joseph is saddened as the days grow longer, and she waits for her daughter. “My daughter has not yet come back. I need your help. Help me to keep praying,” she says.

Four years ago, few people had ever heard of the dusty town called Chibok. But that changed overnight on April 14, 2014 when Boko Haram abducted more than 230 of them. Today, half of those girls remain in captivity. During a recent visit by OD partners to Chibok, parents told us that until ALL the girls have been freed, Chibok won’t be celebrating. The still-waiting parents are in desperate need of prayer and encouragement.

Rescued and Released

47 girls escaped before, during and shortly after the attack. It was more than two years after the abduction that more girls made it out of captivity, the largest number, 103, being released in two batches.

Still in Captivity

Half of the girls remain in captivity with their parents waiting, hoping, and praying to be reunited with them soon.

Yakubu Nkeki Maina, spokesperson for the Chibok parents, who received his daughter back from captivity, lives as though he has not. “We are still in pain. Though some of our daughters are back we cannot celebrate their return in the presence of our colleagues whose daughters are still missing. We must bear the cross together and keep the faith and hope that God gives us a reason to celebrate together when all the daughters are back. These parents of the girls that are yet to come… they fear that maybe their own will not come. Some of them are losing hope.”

Desperate for Encouragement

Pastor Ayuba Muta has two daughters, who were both kidnapped by Boko Haram. One daughter has been released; the other still is in Boko Haram captivity. Despite his bittersweet situation, Pastor Ayuba remains hopeful. “What is impossible with man is possible with God,” he says. “I trust God that one day my other daughter will be released.”

Yana Galang, the is one of the Chibok mothers hoping for a miracle. “We have seen half of the girls. But half of them are still missing. Always I’m thinking of my daughter. I always need her close to me, like my other daughters. I still have hope that one day I will see her. …We ask the brothers and sisters to pray for us so that we will see the remaining girls”

Your support has enabled Open Doors to walk closely with the parents of the Chibok kidnapped girls over the past four years. Through local partners we conducted trauma programs and provided financial support for their medication and food. “We have seen the result of your prayers. We have seen Him answer prayers. God has used you to change our story. We are eternally grateful. God will bless you richly!” said Yakubu.

We invite you to send a note of encouragement to these precious parents who are waiting in hope. May their strength be renewed, as they wait upon the Lord. Send us an email at encourage@odcan.org and we will compile all the messages received and send these over to Chibok so that parents like Esther, Ayuba and Yana can be encouraged.

Timeline Chibok releases/rescues

  • On May 18, 2016 Nigerian soldiers discovered Amina Ali Darsha Nkeki (19) near Damboa, south of Maiduguri with a four-month-old baby and her “husband” in the Sambisa Forest.
  • Then on November 5, 2016 soldiers found Mary Ali Maiyanga who had escaped with a ten-month-old baby in Pulka, Gwoza.
  • On Oct 13, 2016 the Boko Haram released 21 girls.
  • On May 6, 2017 another 82 girls were released.
  • On Jan 5, 2018 one more girl was rescued.

Some of the girls who escaped before, during or shortly after the attack on the school went to the US to continue their education. Another group of 24 girls received scholarships to study at the American University of Nigeria.

The released Chibok girls now attend school in Yola, Adamawa State. They are doing well spiritually. Almost all of them were baptized after their release, publicly declaring their intention to continue walking with the Lord Jesus Christ.