by Stefan Bos, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) - A mother of seven children in eastern Uganda has reportedly suffered severe wounds after her husband and other Muslim relatives attacked her on Easter Sunday for putting her faith in Christ.
Salimati Naibira, 37, of Bukoba B village in Mayuge District, was also abandoned by her family and is uncertain whether she will see her children again, Christian sources said.
The woman lost consciousness after her husband cut her with a dagger known as a Somali sword in the thigh and back on April 4, reported Morning Star News agency.
The agency, which follows reported cases of Christian persecution, said Naibiri’s difficulties began when she attended a worship service for the first time in the area. She had converted from Islam to Christianity three days prior.
One hour into the worship service, Naibira said, she saw through a window that her husband and other relatives were approaching.
“I saw my husband, Ayubu Kairu, and some family members enter the church gate shouting ‘Allah Akbar’” (‘Allah is greater’],’” Naibira told Morning Star News. “The church members took off from church worship to save their lives.”
The Muslim relatives entered the church building with sticks and the Somali sword. Naibira said the pastor and some church elders tried to protect her but were overpowered, and the assailants forced her into a van and drove her to a nearby forest.
“They started beating me with sticks; then my husband cut me with the Somali sword at the thigh and the back,” she said. “I regained consciousness only after several hours.”
A passing herdsman reportedly found her lying in a pool of blood at about 3 p.m. He and others took the still unconscious Naibira to a clinic in nearby Kityerera town.
On April 5, hospital staff members managed to make contact with a Christian friend of Naibira, and on April 8, she picked her up from the hospital. Naibira is at an undisclosed location recovering from wounds on her face, thigh, and back, Christians said.
Naibira said she came to faith in Christ on April 1 when visiting a friend’s workplace in Kaluuba town. She reportedly told her friend how doctors failed to relieve heavy menstrual bleeding for four years. A Christian evangelist arrived, told her about Christ, and asked if he could pray for them, Naibira added.
“I shared with him the fear which had tormented me of the flow of blood that had troubled me for four years,” she was quoted as saying. “He said that Jesus is a healer and that with Him all things are possible. As he prayed for me, I felt something like an electric power touched my body.”
“Hearing that God’s love was revealed in Christ’s sacrifice for sins, Naibira received Him as Lord and Savior,” the agency said, citing Naibira. The evangelist told her to visit any nearby church for fellowship and to celebrate the resurrection of Christ on Easter Sunday, April 4.
“Before leaving my friend, I was full of joy,” Naibira recalled. “At night, I got a dream of watching a film of Jesus crucified on the cross.” She awoke with a feeling of excitement, and the issue of blood had stopped, she added in published remarks.
Naibira does not know if she can gain custody of her children, who range in age from 4 to 17 years old. She said she could not return home. “I hope my children are safe,” she reportedly said.
The assault was the latest of many instances of persecution of Christians in Uganda, Morning Star News reported. Muslims comprise roughly 14 percent of Uganda’s near 45-million population, with high concentrations in the country's eastern areas, including Naibira’s village.
Christian converts are among those singled out by Islamic hardliners.