Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood's governing majority, is not actually crucifying the nation's Christians. But they are nonetheless actively persecuting Coptic Christians who are said to be one-tenth of the population of the largest Arab country. A photograph of two young men set afire during recent demonstrations is pretty striking.
Demonstrations have turned into riots as Egypt's police cracked down on the Copts. The Copts were protesting against increasing sectarian violence directed at the country's Christian minority.
Typically, what has been happening is the Copts protest against Islamist violence directed at them and their churches. St. Mark's Cathedral has been the target of Muslim extremists in recent week. When the Copts face police, they get tear-gassed. And then they are the ones arrested. The Muslim Brotherhood authorities will pick up Coptic youth-hopefully the ones not yet set on fire-and jail them. more >>
The head of Foreign Relations for the Moscow Patriarchate, Metropolitan Hilarion, stated that what is happening in "Syria is a humanitarian crisis," in warning against the threat of genocide against the Christians in Syria.
"What is currently happening in Syria is a humanitarian disaster. I am in a close contact with the leaders of the Orthodox Church of Antioch. They stressed that the Christians face crimes of genocide through expelling of Christians from the areas dominated by the Free Syrian Army or killing them," Hilarion said during a speech at the Greek University of Ersutalis, according to a report in Russia Today.
"Unfortunately, most western politicians ignore these clear realities," he added. more >>
Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria exclaimed that the recent attacks on Coptics in the country should not go unnoticed, and those responsible should be brought to justice.
"The aggression against the cathedral should not pass unnoticed and be forgotten ... it is a serious matter of the greatest extent and it will remain a shame that will not be forgotten in Egyptian history." His Holiness told Mideast Christian News.
"I call on the officials to take realistic positions, as there have been no realistic consequences 10 days after the incident, an issue that has increased the frustration and pain among Copts," His Holiness Pope Tawadros II continued. more >>
Rev. Dr. Safwat el-Bayadi, head of the Evangelical community in Egypt, described the arrest of Copts in wake of recent attacks in Cairo as a "deviation from the course of justice."
Rev. Bayadi said the judiciary must be fair and that the trial of victims is not acceptable. He pointed out the institution of the presidency cares only for improving the image of the regime, explaining that this is why the presidency releases English statements to address the West while it does not care about the homeland.
According to Rev. Bayadi, Christians still live in the era of martyrdom. Although he stresses the tolerance and forgiveness of Copts towards their aggressors, it does not give aggressors permission to repeat their assaults. more >>
In his most recent Sunday sermon, Pope Francis addressed the topic of the persecuted church, a gesture which suggests that perhaps the new pontiff will focus part of his holy career on helping the millions of persecuted Christians throughout the world.
"Let us pray especially for Christians who suffer persecution," he said during his sermon on the third Sunday of Easter at St. Peter's Basilica in Rome, Italy, in front of a crowd of nearly 80,000 Christians.
The pope then proceeded to draw a comparison between the persecution Jesus' apostles endured to the persecution of modern-day Christians. more >>
The American Center for Law and Justice received news that U.S. pastor Saeed Abedini has been severely beaten in Evin Prison in Tehran, denied proper medical care, and experiencing fainting spells.
"Pastor Saeed reported today that last week he was severely beaten when the prison officials took him to the hospital. During the weekly prison visit today, Pastor Saeed's family reported that his physical condition is worsening – seeing first-hand the marks and symptoms left by the recent beating. These beatings and the internal injuries are causing Pastor Saeed frequent fainting spells," the law group, which is representing Abedini's wife and two children back in America, revealed in a statement on Monday.
The Iranian-born pastor, who converted to Christianity and was building an orphanage for children when he was arrested in Tehran last year, was sentenced to eight years in prison in January for "endangering national security." The ACLJ called that a "sham trail," however, noting that the real reason behind Abedini's sentence was his faith. more >>