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Stories tagged with: persecuted church

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  • Chibok girls’ struggles subject of HBO film

    by Diana Chandler, posted Tuesday, October 16, 2018 (yesterday)

    Screen capture from HBO preview video
    ABUJA, Nigeria (BP) – "And by God's grace, we'll make it," one of 276 Christian schoolgirls Boko Haram kidnapped from Chibok proclaims in the preview of an upcoming HBO documentary on the captives who've been released.

    "Stolen Daughters: Kidnapped by Boko Haram" showcases 103 Chibok schoolgirls struggling to regain normalcy nearly five years after their ordeal began. More than 100 Chibok girls remain captive or missing since the April 2014 raid on the Government Girls Secondary School in the predominantly Christian town of Chibok. Read More

  • 'Pour out Your Holy Spirit on … Trump,' Brunson prays

    by Diana Chandler, posted Monday, October 15, 2018 (2 days ago)

    Screen capture from Global News
    WASHINGTON (BP) -- Just a day after his release from incarceration in Turkey, freed American pastor Andrew Brunson prayed for President Donald Trump in an Oct. 13 meeting in the White House Oval Office.

    "Lord God, I ask that you pour out your Holy Spirit on President Trump, that You give him supernatural wisdom to accomplish all the plans you have for this country and for him," Brunson prayed, according to a video CBS news tweeted. Brunson's family, Congressional members and media attended the 2:30 p.m. meeting. Read More

  • Imprisoned pastor Andrew Brunson free at last

    by Diana Chandler, posted Friday, October 12, 2018 (5 days ago)

    Reuters video screengrab
    ALIAGA, Turkey (BP) -- Pastor Andrew Brunson reportedly will fly to the United States Oct. 13, released after two years' incarceration on disputed charges that could have led to life imprisonment.

    Although Turkey did not proclaim Brunson innocent, a court in Aliaga today (Oct. 12) released him on time served after sentencing him to three years, one month and 15 days, The New York Times reported. The court found him guilty of "terror," the Times said, following charges of espionage and undermining the constitutional order of the state. Read More

  • Christian, ethnic persecution 'nightmare' in China

    by Diana Chandler, posted Wednesday, October 10, 2018 (7 days ago)

    YouTube video screengrab
    WASHINGTON (BP) -- Christians and ethnic minorities are living a "nightmare" in China under President Xi Jinping, a congressional commission report released today (Oct. 10) documents.

    Jinping's unmerciful program to "Sinicize" religion into a government-controlled framework, marginalize ethnic minorities including Uyghur Muslims, and redefine human rights intensified in 2018, making life a nightmare for civilians, U.S. Representative and commission co-chair Chris Smith said in releasing the 2018 Annual Report of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC). Read More

  • Christian mother's life in hands of Pakistani court

    by Diana Chandler, posted Tuesday, October 09, 2018 (8 days ago)

    BP file photo.
    ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (BP) -- Christian mother Asia Bibi only offered a Muslim coworker a drink of water. Subsequently convicted of blasphemy and sentenced to death in 2010, Bibi awaits the result of her final court appeal heard Oct. 8.

    The coworker said Bibi's Christianity made the water ceremonially unclean, setting off a chain of false accusations related to Bibi's beliefs and backed by Muslim clerics. The Supreme Court of Pakistan heard hours of testimony before deferring a ruling in the case, with no official timeline set for a decision, according to news reports. Read More

  • A return to Mao era persecution in China?

    by Diana Chandler, posted Wednesday, October 03, 2018 (14 days ago)

    Screen capture from ABC News
    CHINA (BP) -- Police raided church services Sept. 30 in various Chinese provinces in escalating persecutions said to be "returning to those evident in Mao's era."

    Government officials disrupted services at five or more churches in at least four provinces in central, southern and southwestern China, removing crosses, blocking entrances, disbanding worship and harassing members, International Christian Concern (ICC) reported today (Oct. 3).

    "Christians in China are bracing themselves for the worst clampdown since the Cultural Revolution," ICC Regional Manager Gina Goh said in the ICC press release. "The scale and tactics employed by the authorities are unprecedented and disturbing. Every day there are churches across China that become fresh victims of persecution." Read More

  • Rebel force attacks Bapt. churches in Burma

    by Burma correspondent/Morning Star News, posted Tuesday, September 25, 2018 (22 days ago)

    Morning Star News via Facebook
    YANGON, Burma (BP) -- Ethnic Wa rebels this month shut down churches or destroyed their buildings and temporarily detained several clergymen in eastern Burma (Myanmar), sources said.

    On the border with China, soldiers of Myanmar's largest ethnic rebel group, the United Wa State Army (UWSA), attacked the churches in the rebel's autonomous region in Shan state, according to Christian leaders.

    "We confirmed that at least 12 churches have been destroyed or closed as of Sept. 20," a Christian leader who has lived in the Wa region for several decades told Morning Star News. The Wa people worship ancestral spirits, and the move by the UWSA was meant to hamper Christian missionary activity, said the leader on condition of anonymity.

    Most of the targets were Baptist churches in Panghsang, where Wa soldiers destroyed crosses, the source said. The headquarters of the UWSA is located in Panhsang, on Burma's border with China. Read More

  • China shutters churches, demands recant of faith

    by Diana Chandler, posted Wednesday, September 12, 2018 (one month ago)

    Screen capture from ChinaAid
    BEIJING (BP) -- China is raiding and shuttering churches, assaulting worshipers, destroying crosses and burning Bibles in escalating persecution of Christians under a Communist constitution that claims to grant religious freedom.

    Police shut down the largest house church in Beijing Sunday (Sept. 9), the multisite Zion Church, Reuters reported. The Chaoyang District Civil Affairs Bureau told the church it was illegal because it wasn't registered with the government-controlled Three-Self Patriotic Movement (TSPM).

    A week earlier in Henan Province, federal and local government officials of various ranks stormed several churches and assaulted worshipers, it was widely reported. Read More

  • Hindu nationalists host world conference in U.S.

    by Diana Chandler, posted Wednesday, September 05, 2018 (one month ago)

    CHICAGO (BP) -- An international Hindu confab in the U.S. that organizers describe as a unity initiative will include radical and violent Hindu nationalists, International Christian Concern charged today (Sept. 5).

    The second World Hindu Congress convening Sept. 7-9 in Chicago will encourage the use of Hindu philosophy, according to event organizers, to address issues of politics, education and commerce affecting the Hindu diaspora. About 2,500 Hindu leaders and others are expected to attend.

    Organizers include the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) of America, a CIA-classified "militant religious outfit" that, according to ICC, has defended and promoted attacks on religious minorities in India including Christians, Muslims and socially disparaged Dalits. Read More

  • U.S. advocates for persecuted pastors in Turkey & Iran

    by Diana Chandler, posted Tuesday, August 21, 2018 (one month ago)

    WASHINGTON (BP) -- In longstanding cases of Christian persecution, American pastor Andrew Brunson remains under house arrest in Turkey as the U.S. government ramps up efforts for his release, while pastor Youcef Nadarkhani begins a 10-year prison term in Iran's notorious Evin prison.

    In the latest bilateral move, U.S. President Donald Trump's administration rejected an offer from Turkish President Recep Erdogan that could have secured Brunson's release. Erdogan offered to release Brunson if Trump dropped an investigation of one of Turkey's largest state-owned banks, Halkbank, regarding alleged violations of U.S. sanctions on Iran, the Wall Street Journal reported Aug. 19. Read More