Christian Solidarity Worldwide – Week of Prayer for Pakistan

pakistan1

Christians and other minority faiths in Pakistan not only face the prospect of being targeted in a violent attack, but also face everyday institutional and social discrimination. A general election is scheduled for 25 July – please pray that the election is free and fair, and takes place peacefully.

Sunday
Pakistan’s blasphemy laws make it a criminal act to insult another’s religion. The blasphemy laws are widely misused to settle personal scores and target religious minorities. Though the majority of accusations are made against Muslims, in some cases where non-Muslims are accused, their entire community may be attacked. Pray today that the blasphemy laws would be amended.

Monday
Last June, Taimoor Raza was the first person to be sentenced to death by the Anti-Terrorism Court for allegedly committing blasphemy on Facebook. Please pray for justice in his case, and that this ruling does not lead to more accusations of blasphemy on social media.

Tuesday
Today please pray for Asia Bibi, a Christian mother of five who has been sentenced to death for blasphemy. She has been on death row since 2010. Pray today for her unconditional release.

Wednesday
In March, 20 men accused of being part of the mob that burned Shama and Shezad Masih to death were acquitted of any wrongdoing. Pray that justice would be done in the case of Shama and Shezad, and that all those involved in their murders would be punished.

Thursday
We’ve seen a worrying increase in the forced marriage and forced conversion of Christian and Hindu girls. These girls, usually just barely teenagers, are abducted, forced to convert to Islam and marry Muslim men who are strangers to them. Often, their families never see them again. Pray that the government and police in Pakistan would take decisive action to stop these abductions.

Friday
Students in Pakistan are exposed to biased curriculum, which breeds discrimination against religious minorities. Religious minority students face discrimination as well as physical and mental abuse from fellow classmates and teachers. Pray today for a change in the education system, and for the introduction of unbiased textbooks and non-discriminatory curricula.

Saturday
Lord, we thank you for the work of our partners in Pakistan, especially the Cecil and Iris Chaudhry Foundation and the National Commission for Justice and Peace. Thank you for their calling to work with religious minorities and seek justice for the oppressed: please bless their work and grant them the physical and spiritual resources they need.

Danut Manastireanu – Interviu pentru cotidianul Adevarul

Ramona Iacobute
Ramona Iacobute

In urma cu putin timp am avut deosebita placere a unei convorbiri prietenesti cu Ramona Iacobute, jurnalist in cadrul echipei din Iasi a ziarului Adevarul. Am discutat despre credinta, despre secularizare, despre islam si islamofobie, despre criza refugiatilor sirieni si multe altele. O parte a acestui dialog si-a gasit locul in interviul publicat astazi, 21 octombrie, 2015, de cotidianul Adevarul.

Redau mai jos prima parte a interviului.

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Ieşeanul doctor în Teologie ajuns în marile zone de conflict ale lumii: „Criza refugiaţilor e un turnesol pentru Europa. Arată lipsa de coerenţă, lipsa unui lider.”

DanutM

Dănuţ Mănăstireanu (60 ani), cu o vastă experienţă în zonele de conflict şi la catedrele universităţilor care au cursuri de istoria religiilor, îşi expune punctul de vedere în privinţa crizei imigranţilor din Siria şi a evoluţiei religiilor în Europa. Continue reading “Danut Manastireanu – Interviu pentru cotidianul Adevarul”

He Named Me Malala – The Trailer

Take a first look at HE NAMED ME MALALA, a documentary about Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai’s life, story and personal journey as an education activist. Pledge to see the film only in theaters this October at http://bit.ly/1IlDIMg

Directed by acclaimed documentary filmmaker Davis Guggenheim (An Inconvenient Truth, Waiting for “Superman”), the film shows us how Malala, her father Zia and her family are committed to fighting for education worldwide.

World Watch Monitor: Pakistan Supreme Court confirms decision to drop blasphemy case

Rimsha Masih
Rimsha Masih (Source, Getty Images)

London, Jan. 16 (World Watch Monitor) — The Pakistan Supreme Court on Tuesday threw out an appeal to reopen a blasphemy case against a 14-year-old Christian girl, who had been accused of burning verses from the Koran.

Rimsha Masih had been acquitted of the charges in November by the High Court in Islamabad. A Muslim cleric was subsequently charged with fabricating evidence against the girl. The lower court’s decision was appealed to the nation’s highest court.

One of the girl’s lawyers, Thahir Naveed Chaudhry, confirmed the Supreme Court’s rejection of the appeal to World Watch Monitor. Separately, Federal Minister for National Harmony Paul Bhatti told Asia News he was satisfied with the decision of the Supreme Court confirming “Rimsha Masih is innocent.”

According to Vatican Radio, the minister said these were “days of stress and tension” but “justice had prevailed”. Bhatti is the brother of Shahbaz Bhatti, the government Minorities Minister who was assassinated for calling for reform of Pakistan’s anti-blasphemy law.

Although Rimsha was 14 at the time of her arrest last summer, her developmental age is said to be lower. Some reports say she has Down syndrome and has never received an education. Continue reading “World Watch Monitor: Pakistan Supreme Court confirms decision to drop blasphemy case”

Blasphemy for 8th graders in Pakistan

The Islamist paranoia is reaching gigantic proportions already. Here is another horror story for the blog of Anthony Permal, from The Express Tribune.

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An 8th grader was accused for blasphemy for misspelling the word ‘naat’.

If we were wondering whether Pakistan could sink any lower as a nation where morals are concerned, I must say we definitely exceeded our expectations this past week. 

All issues related to the blasphemy law and its effect on the fabric of the current mindset in Pakistan can probably take a backseat to the idiocy that raised its head this week. In a spate of vivid defence of religion against the evil world, a teacher accused a 13-year-old Christian girl of blasphemy, alleging that a misspelt word had turned from praise to curse.

Of course, the initial reaction from all corners within and outside the country was predictable:

a)      The shocked liberals and mild-conservatives alike raised their hackles

b)      The ultra-conservatives were convinced of malicious intent Continue reading “Blasphemy for 8th graders in Pakistan”

Cairo, 10 august 2011 « Synesis

Cairo, 10 august 2011 « Synesis.

Ci[rian Terinte, aflat la o conferinta academica la Cairo,  impartaseste cite ceva din lucrurile noi pe care le-a aflat despre crestinii din Orientul Apropiat.

Urgent Call for Prayer from Pakistan

I have just received from Pakistan this urgent call for prayer for the Christians in Gujranwala, Pakistan.

As my friend says, there are no details available yet on the internet.

Gujranwala is a city of 1,5mln inhabitants in North-East Punjab.

Please remember Pakistan in your special prayers. Today a Theological Seminary and churches were burnt in Gujranwala and Christians are being persecuted. Much detail is not available at this point. However Christians are fleeing from the city.

May God have mercy!

Call to Safeguard Pakistan’s Christian Minority

Press Release

April 2011

(HERNDON, Virginia, April 2011) Religious freedom organizations united under the Religious Liberty Partnership (RLP) released a statement condemning the recent death of Pakistani Minorities Minister Shahbaz Bhatti, and calling for immediate action from Pakistan’s government and the international community to safeguard the lives and the rights of Pakistan’s Christian minority. The World Evangelical Alliance Religious Liberty Commission (WEA RLC) which is a member of the RLP fully endorses this statement referred to as “The Virginia Statement on the Islamic Republic of Pakistan”.

WEA RLC notes with deep sadness that the late Minister Bhatti was scheduled to be the keynote speaker at the Religious Liberty Partnership Conference in Virginia. Continue reading “Call to Safeguard Pakistan’s Christian Minority”

The World Vission Community Remembers the Seven Colleagues Killed in Pakistan A Year Ago


Kevin Jenkins, President, WVI

A message from the President

On the morning of 10 March, 2010, World Vision was shaken by the news that six of our staff had been killed in a cruel attack in Oghi, Pakistan. Four days later, another staff member who was seriously injured in the attack died. That hour of brutality changed our world. A year later, we are still coming to terms with it.

The suffering of the survivors and the sense of loss felt by the families, friends and colleagues of those who were killed continues to be a vivid reality. Those who were injured have all been able to return to work, but the recovery from physical and psychological wounds continues for many. Continue reading “The World Vission Community Remembers the Seven Colleagues Killed in Pakistan A Year Ago”

Christians feel vulnerable in Pakistan


Pakistani Christian women in church (source, here)

As Pakistan’s main churches held special prayers in memory of Salman Taseer, the Punjab governor assassinated for his opposition to a law that punishes insult to Islam by death, Christians in Pakistan spoke of their feelings that they are in a precarious position in their own country.

“Religion in our country has always been a sensitive issue but after the brutal killing of Salman Taseer, we as a minority group feel that the less we talk, the better it is,” said Amna Ayaz, a teacher, adding that with the recent level of intolerance in Pakistani society, she feels it is difficult to decide whether it is safer to “speak less” or keep silent. Continue reading “Christians feel vulnerable in Pakistan”

Christians in Danger Around the World

(Source: Der Spiegel)

The terrorist attack against the Coptic Church in Alexandria at the New Year Der Spiegel to publish a review article about the situation of persecuted Christians around the world, particularly in the East. This thorough article, titled ‘Murderers and Martyrs: The Difficult Situation of Christians in the Orient’ is worth reading. Here are just a few quotes, to raise your interest. Continue reading “Christians in Danger Around the World”

Salman Taseer with Asia Bibi

Just days before his death, Salman Taseer had sent out a New Years message via Twitter, saying “I am full of optimism.” Here he is pictured during a visit to Asia Bibi, a Pakistani Christian minority woman, who was sentenced to death by a local court for blasphemy last year. Taseer was targeted because of his critique of the blasphemy law under which Bibi was convicted.

(Source o the picture and text: Der Spiegel ; see HERE the whole photo gallery in which this picture was included.)

Plead for the release of Asia Bibi, a Pakistani Christian, condamned for alleged blasphemy

Asia Bibi, a Pakistani Christian in Punjab is awaiting execution by hanginf after being (most probably falsely) accused of blasphemy towards the prophet Mohammad. You may find HERE more details about this case.

The Pakistani blasphemy law is the most used means to persecute the Christian minority in this Islamic republic. Continue reading “Plead for the release of Asia Bibi, a Pakistani Christian, condamned for alleged blasphemy”

Dr. Muhammad Farooq Khan – A Pakistani Martyr for Peace

This is a very sad night for me. I have just received news that a good friend in Pakistan, Dr.Muhammad Farooq Khan, has been killed today in the Swat Valley. He was for a long time on the Taliban hit list, because of his moderate views. He was a good man and a man of peace. The world will be poorer without him. May Allah rest him in peace!

I have met Dr. Farooq a few years ago in Istanbul, at a Channels of Hope training. Channels of Hope is a World Vision programme training Christian and Muslim leaders on alleviation of stygma related to HIV & AIDS.

After this training, Dr. Farooq, a well known psychiatrist and a public personality of national stature in Pakistan, has been involved in training Muslim leaders in his country for using this effective methodology. Continue reading “Dr. Muhammad Farooq Khan – A Pakistani Martyr for Peace”

Severe Flooding in Pakistan, August 2010

Crestini persecutati in Pakistan – din nou despre Gojra

Anul trecut, in august, anuntam AICI si AICI teribila tragedie care a lovit comunitatea crestina din Goira, in Punjab, Pakistan. Iata mai jos o serie de inagini legate de aceste tragice si regretabile evenimente.

Ii multumesc lui Dumnezeu pentru sansa pe mi-a dat-o de a oferi, prin intermediul World Vision, un ajutor celor loviti de aceasta napasta.

The Diary of A Psychiatrist – Update

The Diary of A Psychiatrist, an extremely interesting film by my friend Khalid Hussain, a window into real life in Pakistan, including the conflict between the Muslim majority and the Christian minority.

Continue reading “The Diary of A Psychiatrist – Update”

Largest Private Cash Gift in World Vision History

By Rich Stearns, President of World Vision US

The same week as the tragic deaths of our colleagues in Pakistan, World Vision had another unprecedented event in our 60-year history.

We received a $35 million gift commitment from a private donor – the biggest single gift ever given to us. This is a remarkable blessing which God has provided through the generosity of a couple who have taken their stewardship seriously. Continue reading “Largest Private Cash Gift in World Vision History”

A Tribute to our Fallen World Vision Colleagues in Pakistan

Jeff Hall with World Vision’s Middle East and Eastern Europe advocacy team pays tribute to our fallen colleagues in Pakistan. Continue reading “A Tribute to our Fallen World Vision Colleagues in Pakistan”

Message of the Romanian Orthodox Patriarchate on the attack against World Vision staff in Pakistan

Pir Wadhai – Terminal Life – An Extraordinary Documentary

Half the population of Pir Wadhai, Pakistan’s busiest open air bus terminal, is under 15.  Eighty percent have been working since they were three, or younger. Continue reading “Pir Wadhai – Terminal Life – An Extraordinary Documentary”

Comforting Words in Times of Grief

As Jasmina Varupa was reflecting with her peers on the morning of March 10, she was unknowingly led to share Romans 12:9-21, minutes before news from Pakistan came on the death of six members of staff in Pakistan after an attack by gunmen.

“Bless those who persecute you, bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another (…) Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath.”

With those same verses, Yasmina was able to spare more bloodshed 13 years ago in Bosnia, when she was the repatriation coordinator with World Vision, helping displaced people return to their homes after the end of war in 1994. Continue reading “Comforting Words in Times of Grief”

Letter to an Unknown Terrorist

March 11, 2010

To whom it may concern,
On March 10, you killed my friend Ahmed. You killed him, and you killed 5 others. You came into our office, our office, decorated with the happy colors of a kindergarten, and defiled it with the dark colors of your trade.
What was it that sparked your rage? Was it the thousands of children that now go to school because of Ahmed’s work? Maybe it was the trees that he and our friends in the community planted on that hillside? Or was it the health clinic we helped rebuild?
All egregious acts, no doubt. Continue reading “Letter to an Unknown Terrorist”

Pakistan: Attack on World Vision staff brutal and senseless – UPDATE

Last year I spent a wonderful week in Pakistan, visiting with my colleagues there. Among other things, I have spent a delightful night in Oghi, in the World Vision team house with my Muslim Pakistani colleagues. Now, six of them are dead and other eight are injured, fightin:g for their life as a result of a senseless attach from Muslim fundamentalists.

May God have mercy on them, their families and their attackers.

Here is an official message from World Vision on this tragic incident: Continue reading “Pakistan: Attack on World Vision staff brutal and senseless – UPDATE”

Crestini persecutati in Pakistan

Bible burned2

Cu câteva zile în urmă vă prezentam (AICI) tragicele evenimente petrecute la Gojra, în Pakistan, unde mulţimi furioase de musulmani, aţâţate de vestea (falsă) a unei presupuse profanări a Coranului, au distrus peste o sută de case şi au făcut cel puţin 14 victime, unele dintre ele arse de vii.

Vă prezint acum mai jos o serie de fotografii care atestă cele întâmplate pe data de 1 august în provincia Punjab din Pakistan. Continue reading “Crestini persecutati in Pakistan”

Crestini arsi de vii in Pakistan – NEW UPDATE

Pakistani Christians - Reuters

(Sursa: Reuters)

Agenţiile de presă anunţă că sîmbătă 1 august 2009 un număr de creştini din estul Pakistanului au fost arşi de vii în casele lor de către mulţimi furioase de musulmani, fiind acuzaţi de deteriorarea unei copii a Coranului.

Numărul exact de victime este însă incert. Realitatea.net anunţă că este vorba de opt persoane, în vreme ce agenţia Reuters vorbeşte de şase. Christianity Today, citeaza agentia Compas Direct, potrivit careia este vorba de cel putin 14 victime si peste 100 de case distruse.

Rugaţivă pentru familiile afectate de acest nou conflict religios.

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Cititi AICI o scrisoare a adresata de Dr Samuel Kobia, Secretar General al Consiliului Mondial al Bisericilor (WCC), Presedintelui Republicii Pakistan, Asif Ali Zardari, in apararea crestinilor din aceasta tara.

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Un nou articol pe aceasta tema din revista Christianity Today sugereaza ca aceasta tragedie, cauzata de extremisti suniti, si pornind de la niste zvonuri car3e nu s-au confirmat, ar putea conduce la o serie de necesare schimbari cu prire la situyatia minoritatilor religioase din Pakistan, mai ales cele crestine.

Christians attacked in Pakistan

Pakistan Christians

CLAAS regret to inform that today on 1st of July, 2009 in the city of Kasur south, east of Lahore Pakistan 100 Christian houses and Churches have been burned by local Muslims. The riots were incited by broadcast from local mosques. This incident reminds of another one on 6th of February, 1997 when thousands of Christian’s houses, Churches were burned and hundreds of Christians were injured.

Continue reading “Christians attacked in Pakistan”

The Refugee Crisis in Pakistan – UPDATE!

Pakistani refugees

As displacement crisis continues, Charlie Dokmo, MEER Regional Vice President, visits those trapped inside the conflict zone in northwest Pakistan

On May 18, Charlie Dokmo, MEER Regional Vice President, accompanied a World Vision team into Buner District in Pakistan’s Northwest Frontier Province to assist with the distribution of essential relief items to desperate displaced families.He also had meeting with potential partner organisations and the full team.

Continue reading “The Refugee Crisis in Pakistan – UPDATE!”

Crestini atacati de talibani in sudul Pakistanului

pakistan1

Voice of the Martyrs Canada anunta ca un grup de crestini au fost atacati in orasul Taiser, din sudul Pakistanului, de o multime de musulmani, asmutiti de talibani. In momentul atacului, crestinii stergeau de pe zidul bisericii o serie de grafitti jignitoare scrise de talibani. Trei persoane au murit in urma acestui incident.

Pentru detalii, citi AICI.

Oare ce face Dumnezeu in aceste zile in Pakistan?

Rezultatul cutremurului din 2005 din Pakistan

De mai multe zile încerc să pun pe hârtie câteva note legate de călătoria mea în Pakistan, dar programul încărcat nu-mi permite nicicum lucrul acesta.

O serie de evenimente ptrecute astăzi mă fac însă să nu mai aştept un text închegat, ci să vă împărtăşesc câte ceva din ceea ce simt şi trăiesc aici în aceste zile fierbinţi.

Continue reading “Oare ce face Dumnezeu in aceste zile in Pakistan?”