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Archive for January, 2013|Monthly archive page

Map reflects the 30 most recent Persecution Reports. Click HERE for the Map Legend.

 

Journeys: Stories of Christian Persecution

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

Sign up for our weekly e-mail that tells of the journeys many persecuted Christians face.

The stories will make you laugh; they will make you cry. But, most of all, they will give you names and faces to keep before you as you take them to the Lord in prayer.

North Korea’s Overlooked Atrocities

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

Although this article does not mention the extent of Christian persecution in North Korea, which is sizeable, it does provide several interesting statistics on the almost unbelievable levels of starvation taking place across the country even as the regime spends billions developing nuclear weapons. Mr. Robert Park’s call for a change in policy by Western governments is an important one.

Beijing Believers Continue to Face Arrest on Weekly Basis

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

The following small excerpt is from a weekly report by the Shouwang Church. Located in China’s capital, Beijing, the church was forced out of its building by local authorities more than a year ago. The congregation however has refused to cave under pressure and continues to try to meet every Sunday for an outdoor service, and every Sunday members of the church are taken away for questioning by police. All of the churches pastors have been placed under house arrest.      

Mob of 50 Beats Three Christian Women in India

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

Two recent incidents in a rural village in India have Christians in that region concerned. Twice, mobs of Hindus have attacked Christians in just two weeks. One incident occurred when a 12-year-old was playing worship music on his mobile phone. As a result an angry crowd of 50 Hindus beat the three Christian women with him, who were washing clothes in a public well. A local church has shut down as a result, despite the offer of police protection.

Egypt’s Christians Feel Alienated Under Islamist Rule

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

"Copts, like others, feel alienated under the rule of the Islamists, and I hope they do not migrate so that the society does not lose an important component," Patriarch Ibrahim Ishaq of the Coptic Catholics in Egypt said after being elected by the Catholic Synod this week. Hundreds of thousands of Coptic Christians have already fled or are in the process of fleeing Egypt following the country’s revolution in early-2011. The political rise of Islamist parties and the recent approval of an Islamic-based constitution have left Christians with little hope over their country’s future.

John Kerry condemns Iran over imprisonment of American Christian pastor

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

On the day he was confirmed as Secretary of State, John Kerry condemned Iran for imprisoning Pastor Saeed Abedini, an American citizen, who was sentenced this week to eight years in prison for evangelizing, Fox News reports. “We remain deeply concerned about the fairness and transparency of Mr. Abedini's trial,” Kerry said. “I, along with the U.S. government, condemn Iran's continued violation of the universal right of freedom of religion and call on the Iranian authorities to respect Mr.  Abedini's human rights and release him.”

Tightened Sharia in Aceh Worrisome for Indonesia’s Christians

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

Less than a year after a hardline Islamic activist became the governor of Indonesia’s Aceh Province, emboldened local leaders are strengthening the implementation of Sharia law in the region, a move that deeply concerns Christians.

Congressional Briefing Focuses on Waning Religious Freedom in Former Soviet Union

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

As reports of worsening religious freedom conditions stream in from nations formerly belonging to the Soviet Union at least one organization has organized a briefing on Capitol Hill to raise awareness among U.S. leaders of the worrying trend. 

Two Christians Hospitalized in China After Protest Turns Violent

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

Two Catholic parishioners in China were hospitalized after being attacked by security guards during a protest over a new land development. Christians involved in the case are reporting that the company which purchased some of the parishioners land for development has yet to pay for the property, even as construction on the land begins. 

Kenya: Christians Rely On Prayer After Muslim Attack At Garissa

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

A Kenyan Anglican Priest calls on Christians worldwide to pray for believers in Kenya, where Al-Shabbab continues its reign of terror against them. The priest says of Al-Shabbab,  "They aim to rid Christians from here [along with] the security forces. As a result of this Christians who have not fled live in great fear”.

Belarus Keeps Religious Communities in “Invisible Ghetto of Regulation”

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

People of faith in Belarus, especially Protestants, struggle for the right to exercise religious freedom.  With so many regulations and rules for the government, it can become impossible to practice your faith. This is exemplified in the struggle of New Life church in Minsk and is a result, in part, of the oppressive Religion Law. One young Pentecostal said, "If we have to get permission to hold a service in our own church, this cannot be evidence of religious freedom."

Chinese Authorities Cut Visitation Rights to Imprisoned Christian Leader

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

90 DAYS TO FREEDOM: A Christian family makes a dash from prison to the border

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

Pastor Makset, a Pastor who was recently released from prison in Kazakhstan, shares his harrowing story of imprisonment, release and escape to Europe where he was granted asylum. When he was first arrested, and threatened with extradition to Uzbekistan he told his wife, “This is very serious. Call everyone you can. Tell them what is happening to me.” His wife did, and it is in part because of pressure from the international community that they are free and safe.

Write an Encouraging Message to a Child of the Persecuted Church!

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

Children were precious enough to Jesus that He used them as an example for how we are to come to Him.

Let them know they are precious to us too! Write them a personal note of love and encouragement today.

Please feel free to write it in the given on-screen form or hand write a note and send it to the address listed.

Punjab: Christian Sentenced To Death For Blasphemy Acquitted On Appeal

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

Eighteen months ago Barkat Masih, a Christian convert from Hinduism, was arrested for blasphemy. A security guard, he stopped two Muslim men from illegally entering an office. Enraged, the two men told him they would “make him pay”. After going to the police and accusing him insulting the Prophet Muhammad, Masih was arrested. His acquittal has many human rights activists and Christians hopeful that this is the “beginning of change” for such cases and that the blasphemy law will soon be changed.

Trial of American Pastor in Iran A “Mockery of Justice”

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

The case of Pastor Saeed, imprisoned in Iran and recently sentenced to eight more years, is a tragic one. Iran has shown their true colors, yet again, in their violation of human rights, international law and religious freedom. ACLJ Executive Director Jordan Sekulow says it well: “Here’s the troubling reality: we have a U.S. citizen, who has been beaten and tortured since him imprisonment last fall, now facing eight years in Evin Prison, one of the most brutal prisons in Iran. A harsh sentence in a notorious prison – likely facing life-threatening torture and abuse at the hands of the Iranian regime. Simply because of his Christian faith.”

City Officials “Hijack” Christmas Service in Kazakhstan: Worshipers “Bewildered”

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Orthodox Christians in Kazakhstan, who celebrate Christmas in early January, had their Christmas services interrupted by city officials. Two bureaucrats, from the office of the Mayor, made the church goers line up along the carpet as they swept in and delivered a message from an elevated pulpit reserved for Priests. To add insult to injury, an article was later published along with a cartoon insulting to Orthodox Christians. Christians and priests have raised an outcry in response.

In Northern Mali’s War, Al-Qaeda Affiliate Is Directing The Fight

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Western diplomats, military officials and analysts are saying that the war in Mali is directed by the al-Qaeda. Local residents report that the commanders and leaders are all “Arab speakers”. Al-Qaeda leaders have said that a “jihadist Islamist emirate” would be created in northern Mali.

Christians in India Fear Reprisal if Martyrdom Reported

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

This article goes into some of the heartbreaking attacks against Christians in India this past year which resulted in their death. Even more worrisome is that some of these attacks were not listed as martyrdom because the surviving believers were afraid of reprisal from those who incited the incidents.

Cardinal Expresses Shock at Persecution of Christians in Asia

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

According to statistics gathered by Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco more than 100,000 Christians of various denominations lost their lives because of their faith in 2012. The cardinal expressed his shock at how little the West seems to be aware of the extent of Christian persecution, both in Asia and Africa.

Congressman Sponsors Jailed Chinese Christian in New Human Rights Initiative

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Congressman Frank Wolf (R-VA) has chosen to sponsor Gao Zhisheng, an imprisoned Christian human rights attorney in China, as part of the new "Defending Freedoms Project" on Capitol Hill. The Congressman, who has been a longtime supporter of international religious freedom, wrote a personal letter to Gao telling him "your faith is an inspiration, as is your pursuit of justice."

Christians in Pakistan Held at Gunpoint and Threatened with Death

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

A group of Christians in Pakistan were forced to stand in a row at gunpoint and told "you are Christian insects and have no power to do anything against us", and "you are slaves and trivial and tiny before us" and "we will burn your houses and church”.  Though they were shot at, thankfully, no one was killed. They were told that if they tried to submit a report about the incident to the police that they would all be killed.

Where Is The US Government In Defense Of Pastor Abedini And Religious Freedom?

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Pastor Saeed and his lawyer were not allowed to attend the trial that sentenced him to eight years in Evin prison. This prison is notorious for violent abuse and mistreatment of its prisoners. Despite this horrendous treatment of an American citizen, the US Government has remained nearly silent on this case from the start, with “little public repudiation from President Obama.  This article discusses the question, “why the irresponsible neglect from … the White House?”  

Iran Sentences US Pastor To 8 Years In Prison

Monday, January 28th, 2013

Pastor Saeed Abedini, a naturalized US citizen who was arrested in Iran last July, was sentenced to eight years in prison for participating in underground church movements. "I am devastated for my husband and my family. We must now pursue every effort, turn every rock, and not stop until Saeed is safely on American soil," said Naghmeh, his wife and mother of their two children.

Egypt’s Christians threatened by radical Muslim movement

Monday, January 28th, 2013

The Brigade of Islam, a militant Islamic group, called on Christians to pay them tribute in return for protection, like what was done in the early years after Muhammad.  "Egypt is an Islamic country and will be ruled according to Shariah," the movement said in a recent statement. "Let the unbelievers and the hypocrites know we are as keen on dying for the sake of God as they are keen on life."

Reports of at Least 135 Anti-Christian Attacks in India During 2012

Monday, January 28th, 2013

Over 600 Christians gathered to remember the martyred in a service at the end of January 2013.  During the meeting figures gathered during 2012, related to anti-Christian attacks, were presented. In all, it is estimated that there were at least 135 incidents.

Amid Mali’s Upheaval, Christians Stand Firm

Monday, January 28th, 2013

The warring conflict between Islamist rebels and the Malian military continues to rage in Mali. Most missionaries have fled the country and worry for the Mali believers they left behind. It is known that the Islamist rebels have “sought to eliminate any hint of Christianity.” However, reports indicate that Christians are standing firm, and need our prayers.

Evidence of Premeditation Surfaces in Murder of Three Christians in Turkey

Monday, January 28th, 2013

It has been over five years since the brutal murder of three Christians in Malatya, Turkey. The court cases have continued on during this time without a resolution. However, recently, documents were found on the computer of one of the suspects that reveal this murder was a “well planned ahead of time and in a calculated manner.”

North Korea: Plight of Christians Overshadowed by Nuclear Threat

Monday, January 28th, 2013

North Korea’s recent public threats to continue testing nuclear weapons and to eventually strike at the United States have overshadowed the deplorable human rights situation in the country. After more than a year in power Kim Jong-un has done nothing to reform civil or religious liberties and an estimated 70,000 Christians remain imprisoned within North Korea’s six major prison camps.

Thousands of Christians Gather in Vietnam to Pray for Religious Freedom

Monday, January 28th, 2013

Thousands of Catholics gathered in Ho Chi Minh City on Sunday to pray for the release of imprisoned Christian bloggers and greater religious freedom in their still Communist nation. The gathering was prompted by the recent destruction of a Catholic monastery and the imprisonment of Catholic bloggers on trumped up charges.      

  • Kids

    Care for orphans and hurting children

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  • Families

    Support wives and children of imprisoned or martyed pastors

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  • Pastors

    Spread the gospel by supporting underground pastors

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  • Women

    Save women from abduction and sexual exploitation

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  • Communities

    Help rebuild communities devastated by persecution

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Other Projects

other projects

ICC is constantly monitoring the state of Christian persecution in countries around the world and looking for ways that we can act as bridge between our supporters and the persecuted church. Beyond the projects you see above, we are working in many other areas to provide practical assistance to our brothers and sisters in Christ. View our other projects page to understand more of our work and keep up to date on our current projects.