Co-Founder of the Voice of the Martyrs
So effective was the work of the Wurmbrands that Richard was eventually arrested in 1948 after which he spent a total of 14 years in Communist prisons, three of those years in solitary confinement, suffering much at the hands of his captors. Not many women have had their faith tested like Sabina Wurmbrand. Though she suffered much sorrow and loss during the war and post-war years, she never gave up her faith. During Richard’s imprisonment, Sabina selflessly helped the persecuted church while struggling herself for survival for her and her young son. Sabina was eventually arrested and spent three years in Romanian slave labor camps and prisons, leaving her young son to live on the streets. After being released, she spent several years under house arrest. The Communist leaders offered her freedom if she would divorce her husband and renounce her faith. She refused. They then told her that her husband died in prison. She would not believe the report and kept a hope alive that she would see her husband again someday.
In 1964 Richard was released from prison returned home. He soon resumed his work. In 1965, the Wurmbrand family was ransomed from Romania for $10,000 and Richard was warned again not to preach. The family traveled to Scandinavia and England before arriving in the United States, where Richard testified before the Senate in Washington, D.C. regarding his inhumane treatment in Communist prisons. His story and the stories of many thousands of persecuted Christians from behind the Iron and Bamboo Curtains were carried across the world in newspapers in USA, Europe, and Asia.
For the rest of their lives, Richard and Sabina Wurmbrand worked with “The Voice of the Martyrs” to serve the persecuted church around the world. Christians are persecuted and imprisoned in Vietnam, China, North Korea, Cuba, Laoas, and even still in the former Soviet Union. In the Middle East and in parts of Africa, Christians are threatened on a daily basis by radical Muslims. Many Christians are killed each day….yes, even today. The Voice of the Martyrs strives to bring practical and spiritual assistance to them while making their voice heard.
Sabina actively spoke to churches, groups, and conferences for 32 years after the founding of the ministry and accompanied her husband to testify at Congressional hearings on religious persecution. She wrote her prison memoirs in a book “The Pastor’s Wife” which detailed her testimony and has been published in six languages.
Sabin Oster Wurmbrand lived to be 87 years old. She died in California on August 11, 2000. Her husband, Richard followed her in death on February 17, 2001. Their ministry to the persecuted church still continues into the 21st century through the on-going efforts of The Voice of the Martyrs. You can visit learn more at: www.persecution.com