Stories tagged with: persecuted churchFound 296 stories matching your search criteria.
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Asia Bibi freed, conviction overturnedISLAMABAD, Pakistan (BP) -- Christian mother Asia Bibi was released from Pakistan's death row today (Oct. 31) after the nation's Supreme Court reversed her 2010 conviction of blasphemy.
Religious liberty advocates globally expressed jubilation and pleas that Pakistan's military protect Bibi. Meanwhile, Muslim extremists reportedly began burning tires in the streets. Pakistan issued a heightened security alert hours in advance of the announcement, said Jay Sekulow, chief counsel of the American Center for Law and Justice.
"There are security precautions I'm sure being taken in Pakistan," Sekulow said in a Facebook video before daybreak. "It's a complete victory. She's been in jail for almost nine years. But she now will be returned to her family." Read More
'Security' only reason for Asia Bibi verdict delayISLAMABAD, Pakistan (BP) -- Security is the only reason Pakistan's Supreme Court is delaying its ruling in an Oct. 8 appeal of Christian mother Asia Bibi's blasphemy conviction, a religious liberty expert told Baptist Press.
"There's only one reason, security," said Shaheryar Gill, senior litigation counsel of the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ). "Generally the Supreme Court announces decisions the same day. In politically high-profile cases, or in these type security cases, these are the only times when the court doesn't announce.
"And they don't even take that long actually, but this time it seems like they're taking a little bit longer," said Gill, who checks the court's website daily for updates and is in touch with the ACLJ's office in Pakistan. Read More
Chibok girls’ struggles subject of HBO filmABUJA, 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 praysWASHINGTON (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 lastALIAGA, 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 ChinaWASHINGTON (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 courtISLAMABAD, 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?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 BurmaYANGON, 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 faithBEIJING (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