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Seminary Student Killed for Witnessing

Michael Nnadi was a Nigerian, whose face projected a nearly supernatural joy. Michael was one of 270 students studying at the Good Shepherd Seminary in Kaduna State. On the evening of January 8, 2020, his world was upended when an armed gang, disguised in military fatigues, breached the gate of the school. They snagged four seminarians, including Michael, and made their escape.

By the end of the month, three of the four boys had been freed, but not Michael. A few days later he was found dead, his body dumped on the side of a road, massacred by his kidnappers. Michael’s twin brother, Raphael, spoke to the Nigerian press the week he and his brother would have turned 19. He saluted the path of faith and service that his brother had selected. “Michael was so much committed and loved the things of God. … My consolation is that he did not die in vain, pursuing things of the world, but rather he died in the service to God, training for the [ministry].”

It remained a mystery why Michael had been killed while the others had been freed. The same negotiators had been working on behalf of all four abductees. Some Nigerians, as well as local and international authorities, thought that he may have been disposed of as a negotiating tool to increase the ransom for the others, but no one knew for sure—until April 30, 2020.

That’s the day the murderer, Mustapha Mohammed, was interviewed in prison by Nigeria’s newspaper. So why did Mustapha kill Michael? He openly and even brazenly told the press, “He did not allow me any peace; he just kept preaching to me his gospel. I did not like the confidence he displayed [in his faith], and I decided to send him to an early grave.”

Possible Preaching Angle:

This is a sobering story about persecution. Sometimes Christians are persecuted because they have not acted very Christlike. But Jesus also said that we would be hated for his name’s sake. In other words, we would be persecuted for our very Christlikeness.

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