The China Religion Survey 2015, released earlier this week by the National Survey Research Center at Renmin University of China, has revealed that Islam and Catholicism are the two fastest rising religions among Chinese faithful under 30.
The survey showed that Islam has the largest number of young Chinese followers, at 22.4 percent, while Catholicism comes in second with a 22 percent share. Buddhism and Taoism remain overall the dominant religions of the world's most populous nation, however.
"Islam tends to have a younger demographic. Most believers of Islam belong to ethnic minority groups and it is common for a woman to give birth to several children. The children would also become Muslims while it is very rare to have an adult converting to Islam," Wei Dedong, a professor of Buddhist studies at the School of Philosophy at Renmin University of China, told the Global Times. more >>
Two young Yazidi women have described the unimaginable cruelty and horrific rapes they endured while under the control of their ISIS captors, one of whom reportedly beat a woman's 1-year-old child in front of her until all of his sexual demands were met.
Reehan, 19, and Barfo, 25, last names not included to protect their identities, told their stories to the British MailOnline. Raheen, married with a young son, was abducted from her home in Northwestern Iraq. She was auctioned off to a 50-year-old fighter whom she was able to fend off at first until the man started beating her 1-year-old son. She then said she was forced to give in to all of his demands to save the life of her son.
"I agreed to everything that this man wanted for the sake of my son," she declared. Reehan was subsequently locked up in the man's home for the next 10 months. She further explained that she tried to stop the repeated rapes by appealing to her captor's Islamic beliefs, but he said the sex trade among Yazidi women is permitted "according to Islam." more >>
The American Center for Law and Justice has warned that "time is running out" for two imprisoned Presbyterian pastors who are on trial and facing a possible death penalty for their Christian faith. The ACLJ has also launched a letter-writing campaign for the pastors, and urged people to sign it.
"We have launched a massive letter-writing campaign to Sudan's new minister of justice demanding Sudan follow international law, ensure that these persecuted pastors can properly prepare a defense, and that the case be dismissed for a lack of evidence," the law group said on Wednesday.
"The more letters we send to him, the higher the international pressure. The higher the international pressure, the more likely pastors Michael and Peter will find justice and freedom." more >>
The Islamic State terrorist organization executed three journalists in Iraq and Syria this week, of which two were tied to a tree and shot in the head, while one was sentenced to death by a Shariah court after being accused of spying.
The terrorist group released a video on Sunday showing the execution of two media activists in the group's Syrian stronghold of Raqqa, while Iraqi media reported on Monday that ISIS killed a female print journalist in the groups' Iraqi stronghold of Mosul.
According to the International Business Times, Bashar Abdul Atheem and Faisal Hasan al-Habib were both in their early 20s when they were abducted in Raqqa and accused by militants of handing out anti-Shariah leaflets and taking pictures of oil wells in the Raqqa area. more >>
A Sudanese court has ruled that a young Christian woman must pay a fine or serve a one month jail sentence after she and 11 other girls were accused of violating Shariah law by wearing trousers and skirts while walking home from a church function in the nation's capital of Khartoum.
According to Sudan Tribune, only one of the 12 Christian girls who were arrested on their way home from a church service at El Izba Baptist Church in Khartoum on June 25 was ordered to pay a fine of 500 Sudan pounds, which is the equivalent to about $83. The judged stated that if she was unable to pay the fine she would be imprisoned for one month.
As previously reported, the women were stopped by police on their way home, arrested and taken to the local police station where two of them were freed without charge, while the other 10 were forced by officers to strip out of their clothes. The officers claimed they needed the women to strip so that they could inspect the clothes to determine if they were in violation with the law, an explanation that many believe is "hypocritical." more >>
Upper Egypt prosecutors are dropping all charges against a gunmen that murdered a Christian man, claiming the assailant is mentally unfit to stand trial.
In January, Shaheed Nesemis Saroufeem, a Coptic Christian, was followed and then shot dead in Egypt's Luxor Province.
According to some, this is a common tactic in predominately Muslim countries where legal officials work in concert with government authorities to avoid prosecution of those that are persecuting the Christian minority. more >>