Islam and witchcraft are not widespread in Burundi, but some native church-planters in the East African country work in areas of poverty where both currents flow against them.
A 19-year-old man in one area had engaged in occultic practices for years, with sorcerers sending him to church services to carry out spiritual attacks – casting secret spells or invoking demons as he disrupted worship, a local ministry leader said.
“Once he came to our church to attack as usual, but he was caught by the power of the Holy Spirit and the Word during our evening service,” the leader said. “He never went back to the dark world. He became a member of our church and is following a discipleship course in order to be baptized.”
The leader learned that the young man had been born in a rural area to destitute parents who could not afford to send him to school. An aunt who practiced a blend of Islam and witchcraft had offered to take him to a city to live with her on the false premise that she would educate him. Actually she sought to initiate him into the occult; she dedicated him to serve Satan, the leader said.