GRONINGEN/NAIROBI (BosNewsLife)– The 36-year-old Dutch missionary Ebel Kremer has been shot and killed in Kenya during a robbery, his church confirmed Friday, February 25. His wife Lora Kremer, 34, was reportedly raped in the overnight attack in the town of Athi River near the capital Nairobi.
At least one attacker and a guard were reportedly injured in the violence, Dutch media reported.
The young children of the missionary couple, who witnessed the tragedy, “have been brought to safety,” said their Netherlands-based home church ‘Vrije Baptisten Gemeente’ , or ‘Free Baptist Congregation’, in the Dutch city of Groningen. “They are now supported by a Dutch married couple. Lora is also being cared for,” in a hospital, the church added in a statement on its website.
The couple worked for the international Christian organization Youth With A Mission (YWAM) and supported orphans in the African nation. Members of the couple’s Free Baptist Congregation, who were informed about the murders Friday, are in “deep shock,” the church stressed.
It was unknown whether suspects had been detained by Kenyan authorities.
The church leadership said it had urged members to pray that God will comfort Lora, the children and their family. “We can find comfort in the knowledge that our brother Ebel is now with the Lord.”
EXPRESSIONS OF GRIEF
There have been digital expressions of grief of several Dutch Baptist Christians. “We live in a sick world,” one of them said in a short message on Internet service Twitter. It’s time to “Pray for consolation,” said a young woman in another Internet message.
Funeral arrangements were not immediately announced Friday, February 25.
The incident comes amid concerns over reported persecution of Christians from Muslim militants in especially the north eastern border area of Kenya with Somalia. “In some areas, an increase in persecution is the result of aggressive evangelism by the church,” advocacy and aid group Open Doors said.
However, “There is great pressure on Christian leaders in the Muslim-dominated communities and some have been won over by Muslim leaders,” the group explained in a recent statement on the situation of Christians in Kenya, where security remains fragile.
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