Extremists Attack Parish House in Southern Pakistan and Demand Priests Vacate Muslim Neighborhood
08/14/2019 Pakistan (International Christian Concern) – On August 2, two young priests, named Fr. Anthony Abraz and Fr. Shahid Boota, were attacked, beaten, and robbed by a group of seven Muslim extremists in Karachi, located in Pakistan’s Sindh province. After the attack, the extremists demanded that the priests vacate the parish house, which constitutes the only Christian home in the Korangi neighborhood of Karachi.
Speaking to International Christian Concern (ICC), Fr. Abraz, explained that the seven armed men forcefully entered the parish house around 4:00 in the morning. They damaged the main door, widows, bookshelves, and cupboards in the house. They also desecrated Bibles, Christian literature, as well as icons of saints.
The extremists tied up the two priests and beat them. They also humiliated and abused them for preaching the Gospel in a Muslim-majority neighborhood.
“We were told we will have to face consequences if this house is not vacated,” Fr. Abraz reported. “They said, ‘We don’t want a Christian center near the mosque’.”
The Good Shepherd Parish House is the only Christian residence in Korangi. The house shares a boundary with a big mosque and a seminary for Muslim students.
“For almost a year, we have been asked to sell this house out or vacate it,” Fr. Abraz told ICC. “We have continued our pastoral activities with missionary zeal, however, now our lives are under threat and risk. Continuing the work in this station is dangerous. It could result into a bigger loss.”
The priests have reported the incident to local police who have registered the case (FIR 355/19) and are now investigating. However, no arrests have been made as a result of the investigation.
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