Rosa Robles Loreto, an illegal immigrant from Mexico, has spent over a year living inside a Tucson Presbyterian Church because she fears U.S. immigration officials will deport her.
Robles Loreto has received sanctuary at Southside Presbyterian Church (USA) since Aug. 7, 2014, and vows to stay until immigration officials provide assurance that they will not deport her and separate her family.
"It's like I lost a year," she commented in a Fox News Latino report. The 42-year-old woman has two sons, ages 9 and 12, who were born in Mexico and have grown up in the U.S. She has lived in Tucson since 1999, but returned to Mexico to give birth to them. Her husband and sons are all living in Arizona illegally, but do not face deportation because no one has reported them to immigration officials. more >>
Hundreds of kidnapped Arab Christians have been ransomed, tortured, beheaded and killed over the past year, including a priest who was chopped into pieces, in attempts to raise funds for radical Islamic terror groups and to strike fear into the hearts of Christians across the Middle East and throughout the world.
"Christians have become a form [of] currency in this tragedy," John Newton told The Christian Post. Newton is spokesman for Catholic relief agency Aid to the Church in Need. "I know of one priest who was kidnapped for two months ... they asked for a ransom of $120,000, which the family managed to raise and deliver. ... But hours later, the priest was killed and his body cut up, with pieces of him sent in a box to the family."
The process of trying to free kidnapped priests poses a difficult challenge. In many cases, Christian organizations are left in the dark with little information on who the kidnappers are or where the victims are being held. more >>
A Sydney-based evangelist as well as the bipartisan U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), both recently condemned the crackdown on Christians under Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, who had promised better treatment of religious minorities before taking office, and called for the release of prisoners of conscience, including Iranian American pastor Saeed Abedini.
"The Iranian government actively pursues Christian ministers and believers, placing them in prison under trumped up political charges, or simply killing them in accordance with their law," asserted Christian worker Marlene Mathew, who works with immigrants from the Middle East, to The Christian Post on Monday. "These people are innocent and need to be set free....In recent weeks the Iranian government has openly declared that 'Christians are enemies' who are a major threat to the state."
The USCIRF also condemned the detention of prisoners of conscience, and called for their immediate release, adding that since President Rouhani assumed office, he has failed to fulfill his promise to improve the climate for religious freedom, despite sparking hopes in 2013 when he said, "All ethnicities, all religions, even religious minorities, must feel justice," as reported by The Jerusalem Post. August marks the second anniversary of Rouhani's presidency. more >>
ERBIL, Iraq — Thousands of displaced Arab refugees, including a large number of Christians and Yazidis, are continuing to flee Iraq following the Islamic State's mass execution of around 2,000 Iraqis in the city of Nineveh — followed by a series of car bombs in Baghdad on Monday — resulting in dozens of causalities, according to Reuters.
It's been one year since the Islamic State began its reign of terror in the Sinjar and Tal Afar districts of northern Iraq's Nineveh Province, which has included a hate-fueled campaign to wipe out Christians and Yazidis as well as other religious communities.
"Islamic State has unleashed untold misery and suffering on defenseless religious and ethnic communities, while destroying treasured religious and historical sites in both Iraq and Syria," said Robert P. George, chairman of the U.S.Commission on International Religious Freedom, last week. "Muslims, Christians, Yazidis, and others are all at risk. Due to IS's reign of terror, millions of people from Iraq and Syria have been forced to flee and now are refugees or internally displaced." more >>
Republican candidates for president came fittingly to Ohio to debate, among other things, immigration policy. In late July, the U.S. House and Senate heard testimonies from families of Americans murdered by illegal aliens who had been shielded from deportation by sanctuary policies.
The consequences of these policies hit home in Ohio just a few days later when Margaret Kostelnik was shot and killed in her home by an illegal alien who later confessed to her murder in addition to the attempted rape of a 14-year old girl, the shooting of another woman (who thankfully survived) in front of her two young children, and for firing at police officers, all on the same day.
With sadness, but not surprise, Ohio soon learned that the perpetrator had been picked up by Sheriff deputies just a couple of weeks before, but was let go in spite of his being in the country illegally. more >>
A Middle Eastern Christian community has demanded that immigration officials release 20 Iraqi Christian refugees being held at a detention center in California.
Around 30 demonstrators from San Diego held a prayer service outside the walls of the Otay Detention Center last Thursday on behalf of the Chaldean Christian refugees detained inside.
Mark Arabo, a spokesman for the San Diego area Chaldean community and an attendee of the service, told The Christian Post via email that Thursday's demonstration "was our way of telling our Christian brothers and sisters that they will not be forgotten." more >>