Jordan: “The Mosque of Jesus”

Note: I don’t want them to build “Jesus’ mosques”. I want them to respect people who don’t think he is a prophet announcing Muhammad but the Son of God. This is absolutely useless, from my point of view.

An overview of Amman in Jordan, the host city

Image via Wikipedia

A mosque named after the central figure of Christianity is to become a milestone of interfaith coexistence in Jordan. Both Muslim and Christian leaders expressed their satisfaction when the Mosque of Jesus Christ was opened some time ago. The place of worship was inaugurated in the town of Madaba, 30 km south of the capital, Amman.

“This is a message to the world that Muslims consider Jesus Christ as their prophet, because he informed humanity beforehand that the Prophet Muhammad was coming”, said the imam of the mosque, Belal Hanina. “And this also proves that Islam is a religion of tolerance and has nothing to do with extremism”.

Hanina explained how Christians and Muslims have lived in peace for a long time and have nurtured fraternal ties in this area of the Hashemite Kingdom, an ardent supporter of interfaith dialogue. Christians account for 10 percent of the residents of Madaba and 5 percent of Jordan, which has five and a half million inhabitants.

From Vatican Insider.

UK: Christian peer questions the government’s role in Pakistan

The coat of arms of Pakistan displays the nati...

Image via Wikipedia

A Christian peer\’s speaking out about the persecution of minorites in Pakistan. Lord Alton has asked a question in the House of Lords inquiring what the government is doing to support the religious in the country.

via Christian peer questions the government\’s role in Pakistan | Premier.org.uk, Current News.

Very interesting link: it has lots of information about the persecution that Pakistani Christians are suffering.

UK: Afghan man who converted to Christianity attacked

Londonistan: How Britain is Creating a Terror ...

Image via Wikipedia

Sher Ahmadzai hit the victim, who was known to him, with a metre-long plank of wood in a street in Radford. Another man then started punching and kicking the fallen man in the face.

Nottingham Crown Court heard that the victim, who was also part of the Afghan community, had converted from Islam to Christianity after claiming asylum in the UK. “This did not sit well with the defendant,” said prosecutor Paul Stimson, adding, “That culminated in the assault in October last year in Hartley Road”. Ahmadzai did not admit any cultural or religious motivation, but admitted causing actual harm and a separate offence of arson. He has been sentenced to 12 months for the assault.

More here.

Pakistan: Court Acquits 70 Muslim Radicals of Burning 8 Christians Alive during 2009 Gojra Massacre

Pakistan’s fundamentalists are rejoicing following the acquittal verdict. The country’s Christian minority is “under shock” because, this time as well, the massacre of innocent victims done in the name of the infamous blasphemy law will go unpunished. The justice system also shows its powerlessness vis-à-vis extremists who can carry out heinous crimes with total impunity, whilst the government remains silent. Meanwhile, a Muslim religious leader publicly says that Christians “deserve” to be murdered.Burning

A Pakistani anti-terrorism court acquitted 70 people who, in various roles, were involved in the Gojra massacre of August 2009 (see Fareed Khan, “Eight Christians burned alive in Punjab,” in AsiaNews, 2 August 2009). The anti-Christian violence broke out following blasphemy allegations. During a wedding, a group of Christians supposedly burnt pages of the Qur‘an, a pretext used to strike at the religious minority.

More here.

Background: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.

Every five minutes, a Christian is killed in the world

Photo of Italian sociologist Massimo Introvigne

Massimo Introvigne. Image via Wikipedia

Every year 105,000 Christians are killed because of their faith.

This shocking figure was disclosed by Italian sociologist Massimo Introvigne, representative of the OSCE (Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe) on Combating Intolerance and Discrimination against Christians, at the “International Conference on Inter-religious dialogue between Christians, Jews and Muslims,” sponsored the Hungarian presidency of the European Union (EU) in Gödöllo, near Budapest.

“Every five minutes”, Introvigne said in his speech, “a Christian is killed for his faith.” The figure does not include the victims of civil wars, or wars between nations, but only the people put to death because they are Christians.

“If these figures are not cried out to the world, if this massacre is not stopped,” Introvigne continued; “if it is not recognized that the persecution against Christians is the first worldwide emergency with regard to religious discrimination and violence, dialogue between religions will only produce wonderful symposia but no concrete results.”

More here.

Algeria: Christian sentenced to 5 years in prison after sharing faith with neighbour

Siagh Krimo, an Algerian Christian, was sentenced to five years in prison on May 25 after he shared his faith with a neighbor. Krimo was sentenced under the nation’s blasphemy law, which prohibits actions that “insult the prophet [Muhammad] and any of the messengers of God, or denigrate the creed and precepts of Islam, whether by writing, drawing, declaration, or any other means.”

That “moderate” Algeria…

(I’m sorry for not posting… and I hope I can return shortly… ;) ).

Pakistan: court orders government not to change blasphemy law

Asia Bibi

The Lahore High Court has ordered the Pakistani government not to change the nation’s blasphemy law before the court hears the appeal of Asia Bibi, the Christian mother who was sentenced to death for blasphemy after she refused to convert to Islam.

Terrorist organizations associated with the Taliban have issued a fatwa against Shabhaz Bhatti, the Catholic layman and cabinet minister who is leading a commission that will consider changes to the nation’s blasphemy law.

Shaheryar Gill, a Pakistani Christian who serves as associate counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice, shed light on the effects of the blasphemy law.

“You see, 20 years or more of the blasphemy law in Pakistan has instilled in people that punishment for insulting Islam is death,” Gill said in a recent interview. So, rather than going to the court, people have taken the law into their own hands.”

via Catholic Culture : Latest Headlines : Pakistan: court orders government not to change blasphemy law.

Shahbaz Bhatti

I want you to read two interviews, with the Minister of Minorities, Shahbaz Bhatti, who speaks about his hope of changing the blasphemy law, the death threats against him and asks the Pope and the faithful to pray for him:

Threats and intimidation follow one after the other. I take them all seriously, however, my life mission is to protect religious freedom, minority rights, justice and equality. I will continue to do so without hesitation.

…I am deeply religious, and the Pope’s words are very important in my life. I thank him for his closeness and solidarity with the Christians in Pakistan. His solace encourages me to witness to the faith in my life, despite the difficulties. I ask the Holy Father and all the faithful of the world to pray for me.

Asia Bibi's husband with two of their daughters

Fides.org also interviewed Asia Bibi’s husband:

Today we are leading a threatened life: we are being targeted by extremist groups, and we fear for our lives. We are ready to leave for Italy or for America, as soon as Asia is freed.

…Thanks to the Masihi Foundation we are going through all the necessary legal steps for Asia’s case and for our protection. The President and the Government are interested in our case, realizing that Asia is innocent and they have expressed concern, but they are under pressure from extremist Islamic groups.

It’s interesting that this family have to hide from violent gangsters but those guys who threaten them don’t have to.

Background:

  1. Pakistan: Christian woman sentenced to death for blasphemy.
  2. Pakistan: your signature to save Asia Bibi.
  3. Asia Bibi: Pope appeals for “full freedom“.
  4. Pakistan: Asia Bibi NOT pardoned, protests are announced in case she is.
  5. Pakistan: Both Minister of Minorities and Punjab Governor threatened by Islamists over Asia Bibi’s release.
  6. Pakistan: Taliban-linked cleric offers $5,800 reward for anyone who kills Asia Bibi.
  7. Pakistan: Taliban-linked cleric offers $5,800 reward for anyone who kills Asia Bibi (II)