An Iraqi nun who has been an outspoken critic of the Islamic State will finally receive a visa to travel to the United States to speak on Christian persecution in the Middle East.
In a reversal following much outrage, the US State Department has agreed to give Sister Diana Momeka, member of the Dominican Sisters of Saint Catherine of Siena, a visa for a trip to Washington, D.C.
Sister Diana's trip was sponsored in part by the groups the Institute for Global Engagement and the 21st Century Wilberforce Initiative. more >>
Franklin Graham, the head of nonprofit Samaritan's Purse, said he was discouraged by the impetus behind the draw Muhammad event in Garland, Texas, which some claim sparked the attack from two Muslim gunmen, allegedly affiliated with the terror group ISIS.
"What this event was doing in Texas was mocking Islam. I disagree with [them]," said Graham in a Fox News interview on Wednesday.
Graham said he wouldn't want anyone mocking Jesus Christ, and for this reason poking fun at Islam is off limits for him. more >>
The Chaldean Bishop of Aleppo has revealed that Christians are living "under bombs" every day in the war-torn city of Aleppo, Syria, and are among the most defenseless people because they have no weapons to fight back. The bishop warned, however, that factions trying to characterize the conflict as Muslims against Christians are often simply looking to take a hold of territory.
"We are under bombs every day. I think many Christians will flee from Aleppo and seek shelter in the coastal area, but they will do it when schools and universities close, after the exams. In the disaster in which we live, even this year schools and universities remained open in the central districts of Aleppo," Syrian Jesuit Antoine Audo told Fides News Agency on Friday.
"Many still believe that studying is important for the future although one lives in a city that seems to have no future." more >>
Police in Egypt recently arrested five Coptic Christian children after angry Muslim mobs accused them of blasphemy for being featured in a circulated prayer video with their Coptic teacher that showed them making fun of the Islamic State terrorist organization.
In a report published Tuesday by Fox News on how Christians have become the target of Muslim extremists in the Minya Governorate in northern Egypt, it was reported that Muslim mobs in the village of Nasreya in Minya gathered around the residences of five Christian students and chanted that they had "insulted" Islam.
The angry Muslims claimed that the students and their Coptic teacher were guilty of blasphemy, which is a crime in Egypt, because their video mocked ISIS, a barbaric Islamic terrorist group that has claimed chunks of territory in Iraq and Syria and also has affiliate groups located in Egypt and Libya. more >>
ISIS has come to power in a whirlwind fashion. It was in 2013 when ISIS claimed Raqa in Syria, and for the first time, a terrorist organization was managing the civil services of a city in Syria. As if that wasn't enough, on June 10th, 2014 the Islamic State invaded Iraq, taking Mosul in just a day. A few weeks later, on June 29th 2014, Baghdadi, the leader of ISIS, declared its caliphate called the Islamic State, covering nearly one-third of Syria and Iraq.
The brutality of this regime is unprecedented, and its threat to Western culture is very real. So how did the Islamic State gain such power, and how is it changing the face of terrorism?
Money - The Islamic State is well funded. Terrorist organizations have always received funding from sympathetic countries or wealthy businessmen sympathizing with their ideologies or ethnicity. However today, the Islamic State isn't running on handouts. They not only steal but also are running on an oil economy and taxation. more >>
The idea that Islam needs to reform is again in the spotlight following the recent publication of Ayaan Hirsi Ali's new book, Heretic: Why Islam Needs a Reformation Now. While Ali makes the argument that Islam can reform—and is in desperate need of taking the extreme measures to do so—many of her critics contend that Islam is not in need of reform.
The one argument not being made, however, is the one I make below—namely, that Islam has already "reformed." And violence, intolerance, and extremism—typified by the Islamic State ("ISIS")—are the net result of this "reformation."
Such a claim only sounds absurd due to our understanding of the word "reform." Yet despite its positive connotations, "reform" simply means to "make changes (in something, typically a social, political, or economic institution or practice) in order to improve it." more >>