The Nigerian schoolgirl kidnappings as Christian persecution

The public is rightly horrified by the kidnapping of some 276 Nigerian high school girls by the Islamic terrorist group Boko Haram, which has announced its plans to sell them as sex slaves.  Missing from many of the news stories is that most of the girls are Christians (the majority of whom are members of the Christian Brethren church) and that the attacks are in the context of Boko Haram’s anti-Christian crusade.  [Read more...]

Battling Christianity’s “excessive” growth in China

Officials in still-Communist China have been  demolishing churches as a way to combat what one has called the “excessive” growth of Christianity.  In one city, thousands of Christians have surrounded their church building, occupying it around the clock to keep away the bulldozers. [Read more...]

Death penalty for helping a missionary

Thirty-three people have been arrested and face the death penalty in North Korea for helping a missionary in his efforts to set up a network of 500 underground churches. [Read more...]

The global war on Christians

Religion journalist John Allen has written a book entitled The Global War on Christians: Dispatches from the Front Lines of Anti-Christian PersecutionThe Washington Post has an interesting interview with him about the phenomenon.  Read excerpts after the jump. [Read more...]

The ecumenism of blood

Pope Francis is still confounding just about everybody, but here he articulates a striking concept.  After the jump he tells an anecdote about a Lutheran pastor and makes us realize what all Christians might be facing:

Today there is an ecumenism of blood. In some countries they kill Christians for wearing a cross or having a Bible and before they kill them they do not ask them whether they are Anglican, Lutheran, Catholic or Orthodox. Their blood is mixed. To those who kill we are Christians. We are united in blood, even though we have not yet managed to take necessary steps towards unity between us and perhaps the time has not yet come. [Read more...]

80 lashes for receiving Communion

Aspects of our faith that are so commonplace that we often take them for granted are serious crimes in other countries, bringing horrible punishments.  Yesterday we blogged about North Korea executing people for simply possessing a Bible.  In Iran, since Islam forbids the consumption of alcohol, if you are a Muslim convert, receiving Christ’s blood in the wine of Holy Communion is punishable by 80 lashes.  Evangelism–that is, the crime of spreading Christianity–can mean 3 years and 8 months in prison.  Would we pay prices like that for our Bibles, for Holy Communion, for witnessing to our faith? [Read more...]


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