A Salafist group from Egypt appears to be trying to retract a post on Facebook that warned that eating tomatoes are "forbidden because they are Christian."
However, the Muslim traditionalist group, calling themselves the Popular Egyptian Islamic Association, apparently still finds tomatoes offensive if they are cut in such a way that reveals the shape of a cross, according to the Now Lebanon website.
Along with a photo of a tomato cut in half to reveal what could be viewed as a cross, the group originally posted on Facebook: "Eating tomatoes is forbidden because they are Christian. [The tomato] praises the cross instead of Allah and says that Allah is three (a reference to the Trinity). more >>
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) confirmed on Tuesday that a total of 21 people were killed while 45 others were injured this past Sunday in a car bomb attack on a church, with military officers opening fire on angry protesters at the scene causing more casualties.
"As at press time, 20 people have been confirmed dead, out of which 12 died as a result of the bomb blast while eight were shot dead by the military who went to the blast site in order to maintain law and order. A total number of 45 persons have confirmed wounded out of which 25 were wounded by bomb blast and 20 sustained various degrees of injuries from gun shot from the military," state Chairman of CAN, the Rev. Lawi Pokti, said at a press conference in Bauchi, Nigeria. Subsequent reports revealed that the death toll had risen to 21.
Following the attacks, Nigeria's Christian bishops pronounced a curse on the actions of terrorist group Boko Haram, believed to have carried out the attacks, and their supporters in the country. more >>
A Hamilton Heights elementary school has become the first ever in New York City to require its students to study Arabic, in what it claims is an attempt to bolster international opportunities for children.
Starting next semester all students from second through to fifth grade at PS 368 in Hamilton Heights will have to study the language. The reason behind the decision appears to be the school's determination to earn a prestigious International Baccalaureate standing, according to The New York Post.
"(The Parents Association) were very supportive," said Angela Jackson, CEO of the Global Language Project, which is backing the initiative, according to The New York Post. The non-profit Qatar Foundation International, which describes itself as "a U.S.-based affiliate of Qatar Foundation (QF) dedicated to advancing QF's mission and Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser's vision of connecting cultures and advancing global citizenship through education," is also helping bring the project ahead. more >>
The eviction of a Christian congregation from a private villa used for worship gatherings for the past seven years has some observers speculating whether Kuwait's Islamist politicians are beginning to actively target non-Muslim groups.
An American contractor for the U.S. Army in Kuwait, also a Christian, contacted The Christian Post in mid-April, saying that The Lighthouse Church (TLC) he attends was having difficulty renewing its lease. The man, who asked to remain anonymous for security reasons, said the lease was then suddenly terminated without explanation.
A villa church tied to the TLC congregation was later told by the landlord it had to pay an exorbitant fine each month to use a facility it had been renting, according to the Christian contractor. Church leaders reportedly decided not to argue and moved out. more >>
The Assemblies of God has opted to postpone its decision on whether to continue its partnership with Wycliffe Bible Translators due to controversy over some of Wycliffe's work.
The World Missions Executive Committee for the Pentecostal denomination had initially declared it would make a decision on May 15. But AGWM has now opted to wait for a recommendation by a World Evangelical Alliance appointed panel, which is reviewing Wycliffe's policies on translating terms such as "God the Father" and "Son of God."
"We're grateful to the Assemblies of God for waiting with us while the independent panel convened by the World Evangelical Alliance reviews our translation practices and makes its recommendations," said a Wycliffe spokesman to The Christian Post. "Wycliffe USA has a long-standing relationship with the Assemblies of God. We value that partnership and look forward to it continuing into the foreseeable future." more >>
Whether or not Christians will have a voice in the political landscape of Egypt is at stake during the presidential election taking place in the country Wednesday and Thursday. In addition, persecution against Christians may worsen depending on the outcome, said Open Doors USA president Carl Moeller.
"It's very important that given the precarious place the Christian community has in Egyptian society and the variety of political movements that are anti-Christian in that country, that the Christians could potentially be a key and pivotal minor component in sheer numbers, but a very critical component in the political dynamics," Moeller told The Christian Post on Monday.
"The persecution can certainly become worse. One would expect that if a more hardline Islamist was elected president the conditions for Christians would worsen," the persecution watchdog head stated. "The only possible solution to that would be that Christians become a part of a minor party in the government coalition that would allow them to have more influence in the parliament and the social policies of the country." more >>