Questions to Ask
I always like to know the details of a story. I want to know more than just someone’s perception or interpretation of what happened. Everyone looks at things through their own lenses so things can easily be looked at different. I think this is especially true when hearing stories of persecution. I thought of some questions to ask missionaries and ask ourselves when stories arise.
Questions to ask those involved:
- What was the main reason for your problems or persecution?
- Did you or your family feel in danger?
- Where you forced to do anything?
- Did you make anyone mad that could have reported you?
- What were the consequences?
- What was your ministry like? How will this change your ministry?
- What kind of place where you meeting in? (if involved with Church Planting)
- On a scale of 1-10 how bold/open where you being?
- If you are not allowed to return, are you satisfied with what you accomplished?
- Where the believers in any danger?
- Did the police act unkind and hateful?
- Was there any warning signs?
- Were you involved in anything political?
- Does this seem to be a widespread thing or do you think it was an isolated case?
- Was there a raid, crackdown, or interruption of any of the services?
- Did the internet, email, or a website have anything to do with it that you know of?
- Do you feel you were under surveillance? Phone tapped? Spies in the services?
Questions to ask yourself:
- Is it an isolated case of persecution? Why or Why not?
- Is the persecution caused because of the Gospel or political involvement? Why?
- After evaluating what happened in the story, does the problems seem to be with the ministry or was it something else? Visa? Job? Money? Bad Relations?
I think the first set of questions can help understand the story and what really happened, where as, the second list of questions can help you make a conclusion about the story. I have found that after asking many of these questions, I get a better understanding of what “really” happened and see the situation less dangerous than original presented.