Sri Lanka Easter bombings 1 year on, pastor says God warned him in a vision
Tola Mbakwe | PREMIERCHRISTIAN.NEWS. |13 – 04 – 2020
The pastor of a Sri Lankan church targeted in last year’s Easter Sunday bombings has said God told him and members of his congregation about the coming attack.
In the months leading up to the blast, which killed 31 people at Zion Church on 14th April 2019, Pastor Roshan said the Holy Spirit spoke to him in a vision.
He told religious freedom charity Open Doors UK: “I suddenly saw that one of our families would be struck by a terrible accident.
“I could see the family. Then I saw a fire. I knew something else was going to happen.
“God revealed to me that an extremist Muslim was going to attack us.”
Pastor Roshan’s visions was similar to warnings his congregation also said they had.
Malkiya, a 12-year-old boy killed in the blast, had drawn a picture of Zion Church with an ambulance outside and in Sunday school had said he was willing to die for his faith.
Open Doors said another boy who lost his life had asked his mother just minutes before the explosion, “Amma (mother), what will you do if I die today?”
One man, Prashant, recalled that his wife Girija knew her time was near.
“The day before Easter Sunday, it was our youngest son’s birthday.
“Girija was dancing that day, and she is usually not someone who dances.
“I asked her why she was dancing, and she said, ‘because I’m going to die.'”
Girija was critically injured in the blast and died a week after the attack, leaving her four children to her husband’s care.
Zion Church, on the East of Sri Lanka in the coastal city of Batticaloa, was one of three churches singled out by Islamist suicide bombers along with three luxury hotels inspired by the Islamic State which killed 259 people.
Despite Pastor Roshan’s warnings, Zion Church had kept its doors open to newcomers.
In the aftermath, survivors told the story of a church member named Ramesh who lost his life preventing the bomber from entering the church, saving countless more lives.
The Pastor’s wife said the fire in Pastor Roshan’s vision was exactly where Ramesh had been standing.
Sri Lanka is rated as number 30 on Open Doors’ Work Watch List, an annual ranking of the 50 countries where Christians face the most extreme persecution.