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wwl 2019For almost 30 years, Open Doors has published the only instrument that measures the persecution of Christians, annually – the World Watch List (WWL). The WWL is a ranking of the 50 countries where it is most difficult to be a Christian. The 2019 WWL reports that North Korea and Afghanistan scored highest in the persecution of Christians, new laws in China and Vietnam seek to control all expression of religion and persecution of Christians in China is at an unprecedented high.

Continue reading for more abut Open Doors, the World Watch List, and for Care Baldwin's interview with Open Doors Executive Director Rev. Gary Stagg.



The WWL is produced using detailed information provided by independent experts and Open Doors workers in more than 60 countries. Data is gathered on five spheres of life – private, family, community, national and church – and a sixth sphere measuring the degree of violence impacting Christians.

“As a ministry, we don’t exist to end persecution. The reality is, wherever the gospel is being shared, persecution exists,” said Rev. Gary Stagg, Executive Director, Open Doors Canada. “Instead, we work to strengthen the Church to continue sharing the message of Jesus. The World Watch List shows us where persecution is on the rise, how God is at work and where the gospel is advancing.”

The WWL is a product of extensive research which has been independently audited by the International Institute for Religious Freedom. This year’s data reveals 30 million more Christians are experiencing high levels of persecution the world over and there is a 25 per cent increase in the number of countries with an extreme, very high or high level of persecution, since 2017.

The top 11 countries below have an ‘extreme’ level of persecution:

1 North Korea 94
2 Afghanistan 94
3 Somalia 91
4 Libya 87
5 Pakistan 87
6 Sudan 87
7 Eritrea 86
8 Yemen 86
9 Iran 85
10 India 83
11 Syria 82

Open Doors Canada will be presenting the 2019 WWL through an event in Ottawa. Community leaders and members of the media are invited to attend the 2019 World Watch List launch, learn about current trends, hear about the importance of religious freedom from a special guest speaker and have the opportunity to connect with their persecuted brothers and sisters.

WHEN: Wednesday January 30th, 7:00 P.M. - 8:30 P.M.
WHERE: St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church (82 Kent St.) MAP
TICKETS: This event is free. Register here.

Adapted from

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