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Religious Persecution

Imprisoned Pastor Saeed Abedini Pens Heartbreaking Christmas Letter

The Huffington Post | Carol Kuruvilla | Posted 12.17.2014 | Religion

This Christmas marks the third year Idaho pastor Saeed Abedini has been separated from his family. Abedini, an American citizen, is currentlyservi...

Celebrating Christmas

William B. Bradshaw | Posted 12.13.2014 | Religion
William B. Bradshaw

Actually, we will never know the exact birth date of Jesus. But that really doesn't make any difference, for we know that Jesus was a real person who is still alive and is a very real presence in our lives today. Let us focus on that as we prepare for a blessed Christmas celebration.

The History Behind The Myth Of 'Blood Libel'

Religion News Service | Lauren Markoe | Posted 11.20.2014 | Religion

The ‘Splainer (as in “You’ve got some ‘splaining to do”) is an occasional feature in which Kimberly Winston and other RNS staff give you eve...

Washington Must Recognize India as Another Great Power to Be

Doug Bandow | Posted 12.25.2014 | Politics
Doug Bandow

No doubt the Obama administration feels overwhelmed. Who has time for India? But make time President Obama must. India matters today. It will matter much more tomorrow, especially if Prime Minister Modi commits his political capital to eliminate barriers to entrepreneurship, investment and growth.

Why We Must Resist the Impulse of "On to the Next Thing"

Dwayne Leslie | Posted 12.10.2014 | Religion
Dwayne Leslie

The reality is that the world is a big place and evil lurks in many corners. It's hard to find the emotional bandwidth to care about each and every new report concerning religious persecution in one foreign nation or another.

Religious Persecution: The Tide of the 21st Century?

Rev. Mae Elise Cannon | Posted 11.30.2014 | Religion
Rev. Mae Elise Cannon

Religious fanaticism seems to be ruling the day. Could this possibly be true? As Christians, we must speak out against negative assumptions about other religious groups. We must seek to know our neighbors of different religions and nationalities and listen to their perspectives and experiences.

Images of Jesus as Christian, Jew, Criminal, and Divine: Conception Drives Perception

Bernard Starr | Posted 10.21.2014 | Religion
Bernard Starr

Like my students, Jews have shunned Jesus and failed to recognize his dedicated commitment to Judaism -- a recognition that does not require accepting him as the Messiah.

Hold Pakistan Accountable for Its Blasphemous Oppression

Doug Bandow | Posted 10.05.2014 | Religion
Doug Bandow

The world is aflame. Religious minorities are among those who suffer most from increasing conflict. Pakistan is one of the worst homes for non-Muslims. The U.S. government should designate that nation as a "Country of Particular Concern" for failing to protect religious liberty, the most basic right of conscience.

Religious Persecution Makes Migrants Out Of Millions

Religion News Service | Brian Pellot | Posted 07.29.2014 | Religion

(RNS) And then there were nine. Secretary of State John Kerry announced on Monday (July 28) that Turkmenistan has joined the State Department’s list...

While Americans Debate Impact of Hobby Lobby Ruling, Religious Persecution Mounts Worldwide

Dwayne Leslie | Posted 09.09.2014 | Religion
Dwayne Leslie

While we here in America continue the Hobby Lobby debate, there are religious freedom matters with serious life and death consequences elsewhere in the world right now, today, which also deserve your attention.

What the Hobby Lobby Ruling Could Mean For You

Lea Grover | Posted 08.30.2014 | Women
Lea Grover

It's a dark day in American History. A day when all the non-Christians stood slack-jawed and shocked, amazed that now, their employer could dictate their lives beyond work based on some idea that their moral authority is better.

A "Call to Action" On Behalf of Middle East Christians Gets Fresh Impetus From Pope Francis

Joop Koopman | Posted 07.29.2014 | Religion
Joop Koopman

There is new momentum to build on in the wake of Pope Francis's visit to Jordan and the Holy Land. The Pontiff raised the core issue at hand in no uncertain terms.

Iran Destroying Graves of Baha'is Executed for Teaching Sunday School Classes

Shastri Purushotma | Posted 07.05.2014 | Religion
Shastri Purushotma

Baha'i cemeteries are routinely desecrated in Iran with the destruction of grave markers and the spraying of offensive graffiti.

Iran Should Demonstrate It Is Ready to Join the International Community by Ending Religious Persecution

Doug Bandow | Posted 06.22.2014 | Politics
Doug Bandow

Everything depends on whether Tehran, and not just President Hassan Rouhani, is serious. No surprise, many analysts -- and more importantly, paladins of Capitol Hill -- remain skeptical. And that doubt has fueled efforts to impose new sanctions, which would impede if not kill efforts to reach a final accord.

From Rejection to Redemption

Naphtali Hoff | Posted 06.21.2014 | Religion
Naphtali Hoff

Still, what kind of life do we live when we are filled with bitter resentment and refuse to move forward and embrace new opportunities?

Why are 5 Million 'Spies' Celebrating the First Day of Spring?

Shastri Purushotma | Posted 05.14.2014 | Religion
Shastri Purushotma

Arranging for so many 'secret agents', including Arctic Inuit and Kalahari tribes people, to celebrate "Naw Ruz", a holiday special to Iranians and other countries with historical ties to Persia, seems to be a bizarre way to commit sedition against a country.

I Left 'America' for Its Hatred of Muslims... This Is My Story

Kashif N. Chaudhry | Posted 04.14.2014 | Religion
Kashif N. Chaudhry

I often wondered why there was not a single Christian student, out of the thousands at Harvard, who had the moral integrity to tear down the hate stickers on campus -- hate stickers that openly attacked me for being Muslim.

Muslims Need to Speak Out Against Persecution

Imam Muhammad Musri | Posted 03.26.2014 | Religion
Imam Muhammad Musri

Unfortunately, because our many expressions of moral outrage don't fit the stereotype the media seeks, and because love and moderation are far less effective than hate and extremism in "selling" news, much of what we say never gets reported.

How Angola Almost Broke Pakistan's Record

Kashif N. Chaudhry | Posted 01.31.2014 | Religion
Kashif N. Chaudhry

Though Angola's apparent ban on Islam turned out to be a false flag, it was not unprecedented by any means. We see similar, if not worse, treatment of religious minorities across the Muslim world.

'Unclean' -- Iran's Outcast Baha'i Minority

Anthony Vance | Posted 01.26.2014 | World
Anthony Vance

The concept of ritual uncleanliness is an old one embedded in several major religious traditions, including Islam and Judaism. It is still accepted by many religious Iranian Muslims today.

'We Can Make Supporting the Suffering Church a Priority' -- and We Should!

Joop Koopman | Posted 01.25.2014 | Religion
Joop Koopman

This month may well mark a milestone in the life of the US Church: on Nov. 11, in his final Presidential Address to the US Conference of Catholic Bish...

Release Pastor Abedini: Congress Puts Pressure On Iran

Religion News Service | Katherine Burgess | Posted 11.22.2013 | Religion

WASHINGTON (RNS) Congress is pressing for the release of Iranian-American pastor Saeed Abedini, a U.S. citizen who has been imprisoned in Iran for his...

Holy Fire: Egyptian Christians Worship in Joy and Expectation

Rev. Mae Elise Cannon | Posted 01.23.2014 | Religion
Rev. Mae Elise Cannon

May people of faith around the world be inspired by the witness and faithfulness of Egyptian Christians. In thinking of Egypt, may we use the words from the statement of the Coptic Church as a prayer for peace:

Time for American Christians to Do Something About Persecution

Kerry Walters | Posted 01.23.2014 | Religion
Kerry Walters

Discipleship demands stepping in to help those afflicted by injustice, and the ways in which Christians do so must be compatible with Jesus's ethic of nonviolence.

Lack of Effective Government Response to Anti-Muslim Violence Threatens Reforms in Burma

Andrea Gittleman | Posted 10.22.2013 | World
Andrea Gittleman

Allowing massacres to go relatively unnoticed is inconsistent with developing a strong and peaceful democracy. The story of reform in Burma will depend on whether violence against minorities is appropriately addressed or whether it becomes a permanent feature of the national landscape.