Catholic journalist Russell Shaw analyzes the persecution of Christianity that is breaking out in our culture and that, he says, is likely to get worse. It isn’t “bloody persecuction,” but a “soft persecution.” But it is still persecution of religion by the state, and it takes two forms. . . . [Read more…]
Michael Avramovich observes that “In the ancient Roman world, Christians were referred to as ‘hostis humani generis’ (enemies of the human race). This was a legal term of art and signified that Christians were undeserving of any legal protection.”
He sees this mindset returning. He then quotes from Wallace Henley, who says that “prophetic voices” tend to be silenced in the following sequence: “marginalization, caricaturization, vilification, criminalization, elimination.” Right now, he says, we are at “vilification,” and that we need to get ready to be the Church of 1st century Rome.
At last count, 147 Kenyan university students were killed by al-Qaeda-linked Islamic terrorists. Most of them were killed because they were Christians. I wondered how the terrorists could tell. I heard that they asked if potential victims could recite a Muslim prayer and that they could tell by their dress. Christian women would not be wearing veils or scarfs, so were fair game. But I found a report that suggested that the terrorists basically just asked people. “Are you a Christian or a Muslim?” Those who said they were Muslims were spared. But those who said they were Christians were shot. Notice that they confessed their faith even though it meant their death! [Read more…]
Christians worldwide have been facing intense persecution. But now some of them are fighting back. Pakistani churches have been subject to periodic attacks for decades. But last time that happened, when an attack on a worship service killed 14 and wounded 70, some 4,000 Christians staged a riot of their own, lynching two suspects. Authorities are worried that Pakistan, already torn by conflicts between Sunni and Shi’ite Islamic militants, will descend into full-fledged religious war if the Christians get involved.
Some Iraqi Christians have organized a militia to fight ISIS. In central Africa, Christian militias have been attacking Muslims whose militias have been attacking them. Lebanon has long had a formidable Christian militia organization. After the jump, an excerpt and a link about what is happening in Pakistan.
What do you think about this? Should Christians facing persecution accept martyrdom or fight their persecutors? Or does it depend on the situation, and, if so, what are the situations? [Read more…]
As Christians are preoccupied with the thought that the culture is carrying on a war against them, an actual war is being waged in the Middle East that exterminating whole populations of Christians. And yet, not the American government nor even American churches are doing or even saying much about it. An article in Foreign Policy, excerpted and linked after the jump, tries to understand why.
It would seem that Democrats are concentrating on improving relations with Muslims and Republicans are so committed to Israel that they overlook Mideast Christians, who tend to be anti-Israel. I would add that both Western Catholics and evangelicals often find these ancient sects to be alien, asking “but are they really Christians?” In the meantime, this article accuses ISIS/the Islamic State of the “g” word: GENOCIDE. [Read more…]
The Assyrian Church, which is neither Catholic nor Eastern Orthodox, traces its history to the first century, all the way to the Apostles Thomas, Thaddeus, and Bartholomew. Now, these Syrian Christians, as in those early days, are experiencing brutal persecution and martyrdom.
ISIS has rounded up 150 Assyrian Christians from Syrian villages. Their fate is unknown at this time. We should pray for them. Are you seeing much outrage at what the jihadists are doing to Christians, either from the world at large or even from Western Christians? [Read more…]