ACAT calls all Christians, from France and around the world, to a prayer vigil June 26, on the occasion of the United Nations International Day in Support of Victims of Torture. 

For 14 years, on the occasion of June 26, thousands of Christians in France and around the world have joined forces in a prayer vigil in support of victims of torture. The ACAT, in partnership with the newspapers La Croix and Réforme, calls Christians to nights of prayer, ecumenical celebrations, concerts, processions and the like.

Since 2005 Watchers of the Night have supported more than 150 victims through prayer and also by sending personalized messages of support to those who suffer torture. Whether in China, Mexico, Rwanda, or Egypt, these people have been beaten, tortured and jailed for their commitment to human rights, for being political dissidents, for protecting the most vulnerable poor, or to have been otherwise subject to the suspicions of the authorities.

Among them,

Huang Qi: A Chinese journalist and human rights defender, he has been detained for more than two years in southern China. His trial was held in secret on January 14, 2019, with no verdict announced for the moment.

María Márquez de Favela: mother of Adrián Favela Márquez, who disappeared in Ciudad Juárez on 2 October 2012. In the absence of assistance from the authorities, María and her family have been searching for their son by their own means. She received the Engel-du Tertre Award 2018 from the ACAT Foundation for Human Dignity.   

Déogratias Mushayidi: imprisoned for 9 years, he is the victim of oblivion. This dissident has always worked in a non-violent way for peace and democracy in Rwanda.

Amal Fathy: an Egyptian human rights defender, she has been subjected to judicial harassment by the Egyptian authorities. She was arrested in 2018 for posting a video on the Internet in which she criticized the authorities for not fighting sexual harassment.

The theme, “But deliver us from evil”

The Christians gathering tonight seek to bring hope to victims and to reaffirm the need to unconditionally oppose torture:

“The Christian faith can in no way accept torture. In this Night of the Watchers, we propose to substitute prayer, meditation and communion with the victims of torture for the instrumentalization of the other, which is torture, ” explains Bernadette Forhan, President of ACAT.

To accompany the prayers, the Night of the Watchers focuses on a particular theme. This year’s theme is: “But deliver us from evil.” You can find below the text of a meditation on this theme.


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