Christians Burn While Pope Worries about “Worldly” Matters

  • Although the Egyptian constitution stipulates equality before the law, the judiciary refuses the testimony of Christians against Muslims in courts. Islamic law maintains that the testimony of an “infidel” cannot be accepted against a Muslim.
  • Al Azhar University in Egypt continues to incite Egypt’s Muslims against Christians. Most recently, the university was exposed distributing a free booklet dedicated to discrediting Christianity. It is full of direct attacks on Christianity in general and the nation’s Coptic Christians in particular. Islam is hailed as the true and superior religion. No mention of violent Islamic conquests is made.
  • More than 200 girls, mostly Christian, remain missing in Nigeria after Boko Haram kidnapped them in 2014. Escapees testify that some were told to slit the throats of Christians and to carry out suicide attacks. Girls who cannot recite the Koran are flogged.
  • The “lawyers” of a Christian man imprisoned in Pakistan on the charge of desecrating the Koran last May are actually working against him. Faisal’s lawyers officially canceled the request for bail, previously submitted by other lawyers.
  • Christians and others in the southern Philippines say they fear that legislation meant to create an Islamic sub-state — legislation meant to appease Islamists — will only create more extremism against Christians. Critics say it would render the federal government powerless to redress human rights abuses under Islamic law. In some areas, violence has been increasing, including trademark Islamic attacks on churches and nuns.

In June, Pope Francis released his first independent encyclical. It merely served to highlight the indifference to the plight of persecuted Christians around the world.

The Pope warned about issues dealing with the environment, but he did not once mention the plight of persecuted Christians — even though he is well acquainted with it, and even though previous popes mentioned it when Christians were experiencing far less persecution than they are today.

Encyclicals are formal treatises written by popes and sent to bishops around the world. In turn, bishops are meant to disseminate the encyclical’s ideas to all the priests and churches in their jurisdiction, so that the pope’s thoughts might reach every church-attending Catholic.

If the plight of persecuted Christians had been mentioned in the encyclical, bishops and the congregations under their care would be required to acknowledge it. Perhaps a weekly prayer for the persecuted could be institutionalized, keeping the plight of those Christians in the spotlight so that Western Catholics and others would remember them, talk about them, and, perhaps most importantly, ask why they are being persecuted. Once enough people were familiar with Christian persecution, they could influence U.S. policymakers — for starters, to drop those policies that directly exacerbate the sufferings of Christian minorities in the Middle East.

Instead, Pope Francis apparently deemed it more important to issue a proclamation addressing the environment and climate change. Whatever position one holds concerning these topics, it is telling that the pope — the one man in the world best placed and most expected to speak up for millions of persecuted Christians around the world — is more interested in speaking up for a “safe” (politically correct, if scientifically questionable) subject, “the world” itself, rather than the pressing bloodbath in front of him, or a topic requiring real leadership from a Christian authority.

Meanwhile, Christians around the world and the Muslim world especially continue to be persecuted and slaughtered. In one little-reported story, the Islamic State burned an 80 year-old Christian woman to death in a village southeast of Mosul. The elderly woman was reportedly burned alive for refusing to comply with Islamic law.

The rest of June’s roundup of Muslim persecution of Christians around the world includes, but is not limited to, the following accounts, listed by theme.

Muslim Attacks on Christian Churches and Cemeteries

Turkey: On June 9, a Muslim man attacked a church in the Kadıköy district of Istanbul with a Molotov cocktail, setting the building’s door on fire. In a video of the attack, the man is seen shouting “Allahu Akbar” [“Allah is Greater!”] and “Revenge will be taken for Al-Aqsa Mosque” as he throws a firebomb at the Hagia Triada Orthodox Church. The man was eventually detained by police.

Egypt: A bomb was placed alongside the Virgin Mary Coptic Christian Church in Helwan, part of Greater Cairo, but the security services managed to dismantle it before it exploded.

France: On June 7, two Muslim men were arrested by French authorities in connection to a thwarted terror plot to attack a church near Paris last April. Authorities said they had detained Sid Ahmed Ghlam, a computer science student, who had planned an attack on churches in Villejuif, south of Paris, and is suspected in the killing of a woman nearby. Documents in Arabic mentioning al-Qaeda and the Islamic State were found during a search of Ghlam’s home. Several military weapons, handguns, ammunition, bulletproof vests and computer and telephone hardware were also found in Ghlam’s home and car.

Muslim Slaughter of Christians

Uganda: A mother of 11, who, along with her husband, left Islam (considered by many Muslims apostasy) and converted to Christianity almost a year earlier, was poisoned to death on June 17 in a village in eastern Uganda. Namumbeiza Swabura, the mother of a 5-month-old baby, died after her sister-in-law visited and offered to prepare a meal for her. She complained of stomach pain that started immediately after eating the food. According to Morning Star News:

Swabura’s pain grew worse as she began vomiting and her nose began to bleed uncontrollably; her face turned pale, and two hours later she died in their home as Muhammad [her husband] was trying to rent a car to take her to a hospital, they said. Her sister-in-law has gone into hiding, the sources said. Swabura and her husband have received several death threats since putting their faith in Christ, according to Muhammad. During a visit by Morning Star News to the area in late May, he said, “We are fearing for our lives as the Muslims are threatening to kill us if we continue in Christianity.” Besides her infant and husband, Swabura wife leaves behind 10 other children.

Dhimmitude: Generic Contempt and Discrimination against ‘Infidels’

Ethiopia: On April 25, police raided a Christian worship service in Asella, just south of the capital, Addis Ababa. The Church of Asella had just baptized 40 new converts to Christianity, an act that prompted mass arrests. One of those imprisoned, a former Muslim, known only as “Palus Ejigu,” who converted to Christianity, said, “We were gathered for sharing and encouraging each other with the Word of God. After we finished the service, police imprisoned us. Some of our friends ran away when they saw the way we were harshly handled.” After weeks of suffering unspeakable prison conditions and abuses, Ejigu was eventually released. But five days later, four masked men forced him on his knees, put a pistol in his mouth, and ordered him to kill two pastor friends, or his children would die.

His wife’s Muslim family, in accordance with Islamic law, had already taken the children away from him.

Iran: Iran’s revolutionary court sentenced 18 Christian converts on charges that include evangelism, propaganda against the regime, and creating house churches to practice their faith. The sentences totaled almost 24 years (the lack of transparency in Iran’s tightly controlled judicial system does not allow for a breakdown of individual sentences). The defendants were also barred from organizing home church meetings and given a two-year ban from leaving Iran. The Christians, many of whom were arrested in 2013, were sentenced in accordance with Article 500 of the Islamic Penal Code, which states that “Anyone who engages in any type of propaganda against the Islamic Republic of Iran or in support of opposition groups and associations, shall be sentenced to three months to one year of imprisonment.”[2]

Nigeria: More than 200 girls remain missing after Boko Haram stormed a government school in Chibok in 2014, kidnapping scores of mostly Christian young girls. Escapees continue to testify to the brainwashing that they encountered from their captors. Some were told to slit the throats of Christians and to carry out suicide attacks. One witness said that the Chibok girls have been given special status as “teachers” told to memorize the Koran and teach others to do so. Girls who cannot recite the Koran are flogged.

United Kingdom: Nissar Hussain, a former Muslim from Pakistan who converted to Christianity in 1996, recently wrote a letter to his local MP recounting some of the violence, abuse, and other attacks that he, his wife and their six children have suffered at the hands of Muslims in the area of Bradford where they live.[5]

About this Series

While not all, or even most, Muslims are involved, persecution of Christians is expanding. “Muslim Persecution of Christians” was developed to collate some — by no means all — of the instances of persecution that surface each month.

It documents what the mainstream media often fails to report.

It posits that such persecution is not random but systematic, and takes place in all languages, ethnicities and locations.

Full article: Christians Burn While Pope Worries about “Worldly” Matters (Gatestone Institute)

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