Afghan Christians First Christmas in the USA

Blessed by the grace of God, an extended family of 16 Christian Afghan refugees celebrate their first Christmas in America. Following Afghanistan’s fall to Taliban rule, the observance of the Christian faith quickly became a potentially deadly practice for those in Afghanistan. Believers were forced to conceal their faith and worship in secrecy to avoid persecution. In the midst of such terror, hear how the Light of Christ guided this faithful family through life-threatening chaos, away from harm, and ultimately to Oklahoma City where they can now safely embrace a life following Jesus Christ.

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Urgent Prayer Request Leads to Miraculous Rescue

AUGUST 28, 2021

Through a miraculous set of circumstances that began with an urgent prayer request, a group of 18 Afghan Christians is now safely out of Afghanistan.

On Wednesday morning, Peachtree’s ministers received an urgent prayer request for a group of Afghan Christians seeking to escape the Taliban-controlled country.


For three days and in horrific conditions, the group of Christians, along with the thousands of other hopeful evacuees at the Abbey Gate of Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, attempted to gain access to an evacuation flight.


On Wednesday afternoon, our Senior Pastor, Dr. Richard Kannwischer, sent an urgent plea for your prayers, stating,

“In the last few hours, we have learned of a specific situation involving a family connected to one of our ministry partners at Peachtree Church. This family is known and documented as Christians and is now under a grave threat from the Taliban.

Please take a second to pause what you are doing, quiet the noise around you, and lift your voice to the throne of the Most High with your Peachtree family.”

Crowds of people wait outside the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan on August 25, 2021

As news spread of an imminent terrorist attack, the group made a difficult decision that would likely save their lives. They left the Abbey Gate to navigate the dangerous journey back to their homes, praying they would not be discovered by Taliban fighters or ISIS terrorists who have a heightened hatred for Muslims who convert to Christianity. Three hours later, hundreds of Afghans and thirteen United States military members would die at that gate, victims of a vicious terrorist attack.


As news of the horrible bombing and deaths of our servicemen and women spread in the United States, Dr. Kannwischer contacted fellow Atlanta pastor turned United States Senator, Raphael Warnock, seeking any potential guidance and assistance for the desperate Afghan Christians. U.S. State Department paperwork was urgently processed and submitted, and a military rescue mission was authorized to pick up the group and deliver them safely to the airport.

“Only God. It’s a modern-day miracle, a rescue of Biblical proportions, and an emphatic answer to urgent prayers where God “makes a way in even the wilderness (Isaiah 43:19),” Kannwischer joyfully points out.

On Saturday morning, Peachtree received confirmation that the group was on board a flight out of Afghanistan that would eventually lead to relocation in the United States. They will seek to rejoin other family members who left Afghanistan in previous years.

A Message from Dr. Richard Kannwischer

AUGUST 27, 2021

Dear Peachtree Family,


My heart is heavy with grief this morning, and I am sure you are also feeling the weight of sorrow for our brave soldiers who lost their lives yesterday in Afghanistan. Forces of evil we struggle to imagine or understand viciously attacked their mission of mercy.


You’ve seen the images of our soldiers caring for infants, sharing water and food with desperate mothers and their young children. The goodness and courage of these men and women is an affront to the evil that permeates this region. We are left feeling frustrated, helpless, and hopeless. As your pastor, please hear me when I tell you we are not hopeless. Now more than ever, we must unite and passionately petition God for His mercy, comfort, and peace.

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.
– Romans 12:12

Please, I urge you to join your Christian community in the following prayers:

Dear God, bring peace and comfort to the American families of soldiers who were killed in Afghanistan.

Dear God, bring miraculous provision and protection to our citizens, especially to the women and children trying to escape.

Dear God, protect our military members who are willing to sacrifice their lives to save the evacuees.

Dear God, bless our leaders, both civilian and military, with wisdom and courage and allow them to meet the responsibilities of their positions.

Hope is a guaranteed result of prayer. Patience, despite hardship and suffering, will be rewarded. But, we must remain constant and committed in prayer as we continue to face the challenges of the pandemic, the results of natural disasters in our country and hemisphere, and now, the tragedy in Afghanistan. The burdens seem unbearable, but we worship a God who can and will shoulder the weight of our sorrow. Our responsibility is to ask and trust—partner with your Peachtree community and me to do that.


With hope in Christ,