Persecution Unveiled Cause

Persecution Unveiled Cause
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Persecution Unveiled has established this cause to educate people about the persecution of Christians and religious minorities in the US & worldwide. Mission Raising awareness to the growing tide of bigotry and hatred toward Christians around the world has become a burden on those trying to wake up those who cherish religious freedom as a God given right. Persecution Unveiled has been called by God to prick the consciences of this nation and all free people to speak up and act on behalf of those who have no voice. Email

Thursday, December 3, 2020

Iran: Four Christian Converts Given Combined 35 Years in Prison

While about 30 percent of the world’s population identifies as Christian, 80 percent of all acts of religious discrimination are directed at Christians. Int'l Society for Human Rights 

Christian Persecution 

Persecution of Christians in Iran: this story indicates how deeply threatened many governments that persecute Christians are by converts to Christianity. In their persecution of Christian converts they manifest a deep insecurity about their own beliefs and tacitly admit that they know how God can transform men’s souls. Authoritarian governments in many regions of the world clamp down on converts to Christianity out of a fear that they will lose their control over their people if there are large-scale conversions to Christianity. The result is the persecution and harassment of converts to Christianity in particular.

Please pray that Almighty God would grant to these four Christians and to all the Christians of Iran the indomitable strength and perseverance in the Faith of the Holy Martyrs.

For previous coverage of Iran, see here.

“Four Christians given combined 35 years in prison,” Article 18, November 17, 2020:

Four Christian converts have been sentenced to a combined 35 years in prison.

Mehdi Akbari, Fatemeh Sharifi and Simin Soheilinia were given 10 years, and Mehdi Roohparvar five, all under the same charge of “acting against national security by forming a house-church”.

Very little is known about their case, but Article18 has been able to independently verify that Mehdi A and Mehdi R are both now serving their sentences in Ward 4 of Tehran’s Evin Prison.

It is therefore assumed that Fatemeh and Simin are in the women’s ward of the prison, but Article18 has not yet been able to verify this.

If confirmed, that would bring the total number of Christian prisoners of conscience currently in Evin to at least 17.

A further two Christians, Ebrahim Firouzi and Mohammad Reza (Youhan) Omidi, are currently in internal exile following their release from prison, while another, Majidreza Souzanchi, is now in the Greater Tehran Penitentiary on criminal charges he denies.

In total, that would mean 20 Iranian Christians are currently serving sentences either in prison or exile….

Christian Persecution Link

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.

Christian Persecution on the Rise Amid COVID Pandemic This Christmas

Indian Christians offer Christmas prayers at St. Mary's Garrison Church in Jammu, India, Thurs., Dec. 25, 2014 (AP Photo/Channi Anand)

By Tre Goins-Phillips,

The Christmas season puts a particularly intense strain on vulnerable Christians around the world and, amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the persecution believers are facing this year is even greater than usual.

“Christmas is the real focal point for celebrating the birth of Jesus and, conversely, the focal point for people who are targeting Christians for their faith,” said David Curry, CEO of Open Doors USA, a nonprofit advocating for persecuted Christians around the world.

Those persecutions, he told Faithwire, have only escalated during the COVID crisis.

The humanitarian leader pointed to northern Nigeria, for example, where he said Islamic government leaders “are keeping food from these Christian villages” amid shortages caused by the pandemic. Curry pointed to similar reports from Pakistan and India. In July, the communications director for Open Doors Asia, Jan Vermeer, told Premier Christian Radio the charity has been “inundated with reports of Christians telling us their communities would only give them food if they re-converted back to their original faith.”

“So we’re now helping to feed this Christmas season people who are withheld food and government relief during COVID because they are Christians in these communities,” Curry explained. “And some of these areas … it will touch your heart to see how much they love Jesus, how hungry they are, and then when we bring them their food, it’s a game-changer for them.”

In addition, Christmas is particularly difficult for new Muslim converts who have abandoned their Islamic faith in favor of Christianity. The lives of those new believers, Curry said, have been “greatly altered,” noting many of them are shunned by their families while living in countries hostile toward their newfound beliefs. Enduring such tectonic spiritual shifts for the first time at Christmas “can be very stressful,” he added.

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

China: Churches Told to Worship the Chinese Communist Party or Face Closure

President Xi Jinping’s personality cult has reached unprecedented levels, as countless places of worship are given ultimatums

The Persecution of Christians
by An Xin, Bitter Winter 

Persecution of Christians in China: it is clear from the measures outlined in the article below that the Chinese government is deeply threatened by Christianity and views it as a serious challenge to its power. That government is consequently in the midst of an all-out campaign to turn Christianity into simply another venue for the propaganda of the Chinese Communist Party.

The Chinese Orthodox Church is in a vulnerable position amid all this, as it is not one of the Christian groups recognized by the Chinese government. Holy Orthodoxy in China predates this war on Christianity. It has a three-hundred year history in China, with the first Orthodox Christians coming into the country in 1685. In the 1980s, the Chinese Orthodox Church began to experience a revival. Pray that it not be snuffed out. The Order of Saint Andrew, Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, requests once again that the Chinese government end these repressive measures, grant official recognition to the Chinese Orthodox Church, and give full religious freedom to all the Christians of that nation.

See’s previous coverage of China and its war on Christianity

The religious affairs department of Putian, a prefecture-level city in the southeastern province of Fujian, spent 500,000 RMB (about $ 75,000) in October to turn the first floor of a Three-Self church in the Xiuyu district’s Daitou town into a “Civilization Practice Station for a New Era.” Numerous such propaganda centers are being established nationwide since late 2018 to enforce the CCP ideology on the population. They are often installed in religious venues that have been taken over by the state for this purpose.

On November 6, over 100 government officials attended the opening of the propaganda center, filled with 168 posters about Mao Zedong, Xi Jinping, and China’s other past and present communist leaders. The church pastor was forced to integrate stories about Mao Zedong in his sermon that day, which greatly saddened the congregation that now has to meet on the building’s second floor.

“We do not dare to refuse these propaganda materials for fear that the government will ban our gatherings,” a church member said helplessly. “We’re powerless to challenge them.”

President Xi Jinping’s personality cult has reached unprecedented levels, as countless places of worship are given ultimatums: hang a president’s portrait, or your venue will be closed. Two months after a Three-Self church in Shangrao city in the southeastern province of Jiangxi refused an order by a village official to display a president’s image in August, his superiors issued an order, banning all religious meetings “without Xi Jinping’s portrait in the church.” A government representative came later to hang a president’s image over a religious calendar on a church wall. The venue was also ordered to hang four national flags and slogans promoting the core socialist values inside and outside the building.

“I had to agree to this, fearing that we will lose our venue,” the preacher explained.

On August 26, the Religious Affairs Bureau, Public Security Bureau, United Front Work Department, and other government institutions in the Nanhu district of Jiaxing, a prefecture-level city in the eastern province of Zhejiang, convened 60 directors and preachers of local Three-Self churches to the Yuxin Three-Self Church for a meeting about propaganda. The gathering started with a flag-raising ceremony and the singing of patriotic songs.

According to a student at a state-run Protestant seminary in Zhejiang, students are demanded to learn how to preach in conformity with socialist dogmas, interpret the Bible in line with the core socialist values, follow the policy of snicization of religion, and resist the “infiltration of foreign religious forces.” The seminary also indoctrinates them by slandering missionaries from abroad, condemning their evangelism as “an imperialist invasion.”…

Christian Persecution article continues

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.

Friday, November 6, 2020

Cuban Church Leaders Under Pressure to Sign Document Claiming Gov’t Demolition of Church was Legal

 The church has faced harassment and threats since 2015

The Cuban national flag is seen raised over their new embassy in Washington, . 
July 20, 2015Reuters/Andrew Harnik/Pool

By Samuel Smith
Christian Post

Christian leaders in a southern Cuban town have faced pressure from government agents to sign a statement declaring that the recent destruction of the Assemblies of God Church was legal.

Christian Solidarity Worldwide, an international watchdog group that helps persecuted believers in over 20 countries, reports that authorities in Santiago de Cuba are trying to cover their tracks after a church affiliated with one of the largest demonstrations in the country was destroyed last Friday. 

The church in question is located in the Abel Santamaria neighborhood of Santiago de Cuba and is led by Pastor Fausto Palomo Cabrera. The church has faced harassment and threats since 2015. The government claimed that the church’s destruction was done for the construction of train tracks.  

Cuban independent journalist Ricardo Fernández Izaguirre reported on Sunday that the church’s demolition came after government authorities stepped away from negotiations with the denominational leadership. 

The denomination is one of the largest legally-recognized religious bodies by the Cuban communist regime, which often cracks down on non-state-sanctioned churches and believers. 

CSW earlier reported that a local pastor not affiliated with the church, Alain Toledano, was arrested for filming heavy machinery at the church early last Friday morning. 

In addition to Toledano, two members of his church named Adrián Arza and Félix Daniel González were also detained and held incommunicado for nine hours, the organization reports. 

Sources told CSW that Cabrera and the denomination’s regional superintendent, Jose Martinez, were apprehended by officials at the Department of Physical Planning on  Monday. 

“It is believed that the authorities are applying pressure on Pastor Palomo Cabrera and Superintendent Martínez to sign a document saying that the demolition of the church was legal,” a statement released by the watchdog group reads. “Local sources also report that the authorities are attempting to charge Pastor Palomo Cabrera for the use of the machinery used in the demolition.”

CSW CEO Scot Bower denounced the development.

“Cuban authorities demolished a church building belonging to a registered denomination, and are now attempting to pressure Pastor Palomo Cabrera and Superintendent Martínez into agreeing that the destruction was carried out legally,” Bower explained. “They are doing this in order to give the impression that this is not a violation of freedom of religion or belief.”

Bower warned that over the last five years, the church in the Abel Santamaria neighborhood has been targeted and harassed, which amounts to religious freedom violations. 

“We call on the authorities to cease all harassment of Superintendent Martínez, Pastor Palomo Cabrera and members of their church and denomination, and to ensure that they have the right to manifest their religion in public and in community with others — an essential component of this right,” Bower said. “We further call on the Cuban government to reimburse the church for their loss so that they can rebuild their place of worship.”

As a country ruled by a communist party, Cuba was placed on the U.S. State Department’s “special watch list” of countries that engage in or tolerate severe violations of religious freedom last December. 

Christian Post article continues

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

North Korea: Christians Executed for Owning Bible, Newborn Babies Murdered

Though adherents of various religions are held in North Korea’s “reeducation” camps, the harshest punishments are reserved for Christians, the report found. 

People look toward the north through a barbed-wire fence near the militarized zone separating the two Koreas, in Paju, South Korea, December 21, 2017. | Reuters/Kim Hong-

By Leah Marie Ann Klett
Christian Post

A new report has exposed the atrocities done to North Korean Christians arrested for their faith, including forced abortions, the murder of newborn babies, and death by execution for possessing a Bible. 

The London-based Korea Future Initiative published its latest report, “Persecuting Faith: Documenting religious freedom violations in North Korea,” which includes information from 117 interviews with those exiled from the isolated country. 

The investigation documents 273 victims of religious freedom violations, ranging in age from just 3 years old to over 80 years old. 

Though adherents of various religions are held in North Korea’s “reeducation” camps, the harshest punishments are reserved for Christians, the report found.

More than 200 Christians were identified as victims punished for crimes, including religious practice, religious activities in China, possessing religious items, contact with religious persons, attending a place of worship, and sharing religious beliefs. 

The report documented the various methods of torture victims endured in North Korea’s prison camps, including strangulation, starvation, being forced to ingest polluted food, sleep deprivation, and excessive beating.

One former female prisoner recalled, "Men were beaten like dogs. Even in the cell. They screamed like crazy because they hurt so much. 

"Even though women were beaten less, I was hit in the face and my skin ruptured and I bled a lot. [Officers] told me to wipe the blood, so I cleaned it. I wept a lot when they hit me again. Blood and discharge ruptured during my next pre-trial examination. They hit me again because I wept."

In several cases, prisoners found with a Bible or religious pamphlets were executed by a firing squad, while others were locked in electrified cages and fed watery soup. Others were executed for smuggling Bible pages into the country from China for North Koreans to make prayer books.

In one instance, a victim found in possession of a Bible was publicly executed in front of over 1,000 people. The victim was tied to a wooden stake and executed by an MPS firing squad.

One witness told KFI, “I saw the flesh fall off. That is how close I was."

Another man, who had converted to Christianity, was allegedly forced into a metal cage that was just 3 feet high and 4 feet wide.

"There were steel bars on all four-sides that were heated with electricity,” he told KFI. "Usually prisoners lasted only three or four hours in the cage, but I sat there for 12 hours and prayed. I kept praying to God to save me."

The man eventually soiled himself and passed out before being beaten by guards, leaving him with severe injuries.

Investigators documented 32 incidents of sexual violence against women — who made up 60% of victims identified in the report — and forced abortions. 

At North Hamgyong Provincial MSS pre-trial detention center, for example, pregnant women were forced to get an injection to trigger labor. After giving birth to live babies, the newborns would be taken from them, smothered by guards using plastic sheets or cloth sacks, and then discarded in a cleaning cupboard.

“Mothers of the aborted infants were forced to resume manual labor the day after the abortion and without medicine or rest,” the report noted. 

Girls as young as 3 were forced to undergo “degrading internal and invasive nude” body cavity searches, according to the report.

In some cases, entire families were arrested and sentenced to separate political prison camps for adhering to Christianity.

One individual interviewed shared how 10 attendees of Bible study groups were arrested and sentenced to political prison camps. Later, the parent of one of the victims was informed that their child had died at a political prison camp. 

Christian Post article continues

Please remember to keep our persecuted brothers and sisters in North Korea in your prayers.

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.

Thursday, October 1, 2020

China Sentences Christian Bookseller to 7 years in Prison, Destroys Thousands of 'Illegal Books'

China is ranked as one of the worst countries in the world when it comes to the persecution of Christians, according to Open Doors USA’s World Watch List.

A pictorial Bible is displayed at an exhibition, titled “Thy Word Is the Truth: The Bible Ministry Exhibition of the Protestant Church in China,” in Washington, D.C., Sept. 29, 2011. | The Christian Post/Amanda Winkler

By Leah MarieAnn Klett
PJ Media

A Chinese Christian online bookstore owner has been sentenced to seven years in prison and fined nearly $30,000 for engaging in what the regime deems as “illegal business operations."

Persecution watchdog International Christian Concern reports that in September 2019, Chen Yu, who operated his online bookstore in Zhejiang province’s Taizhou city, was detained for selling unapproved religious publications imported from Taiwan, the U.S., and other countries.

Last week, he was sentenced to seven years in prison and fined 200,000 RMB ($29,450), according to a document from the People’s Court of Linhai City, shared by Father Francis Liu from the Chinese Christian Fellowship of Righteousness.

Additionally, Chen will also have his iPhone confiscated, while the 12,864 Christian books from his bookstore will be destroyed by the Linhai City Public Security Bureau.

ICC reports that police also launched a nationwide investigation to track down the bookstore’s customers through sale records and will confiscate their purchased books.

Gina Goh, ICC’s Regional Manager for Southeast Asia, said Chen’s sentencing reveals China’s Communist Party is “increasingly frightened by all things religious.”

“From religious symbols, Chinese couplets, to Christian books, anything that features religious elements is no longer tolerated by the Chinese Communist Party,” she said. 

Goh warned that the “disproportionate sentencing of Christians” such as Early Rain Covenant Church Pastor Wang Yi — who was sentenced to nine years in prison under the same charge as Chen Yu — “implies that the crackdown against Christianity will only intensify.

“The U.S. government and international community should continue to stand up to the tyranny in Beijing,” she stressed. 

As the Chinese Communist Party seeks to limit the influence of Christianity in China, authorities have increasingly cracked down on Christian booksellers and their customers.

Continue reading article 

Virginia Forces Christian Ministries to Adopt 'Government Ideology' or Pay 100K

"Such government hostility toward people of faith has no place in a free society"

By Tyler O'Neil
PJ Media

Three Christian schools and a Christian network of pregnancy centers are suing Attorney General Mark Herring (D-Va.) in order to prevent Virginia from implementing two pro-LGBT laws that force “people of faith to adopt a particular government ideology under threat of punishment.” The two laws purport to prevent “discrimination” against LGBT people but, in reality, they force Christian ministries to choose between violating their sincerely held religious beliefs or paying hefty fines, as much as $100,000 per offense.

The so-called Virginia Values Act (S.B. 868), which Gov. Ralph Northam (D-Va.) signed on Holy Saturday (the day before Easter Sunday) in the middle of a pandemic, compels churches, religious schools, and Christian ministries to hire employees who do not share their stated beliefs on marriage, sexuality, and gender identity. A companion law (H.B. 1429) requires ministries and others like them to pay for transgender surgery in employee health care plans, a procedure that violates these ministries’ convictions.

“The faith of many Americans inspires them to act for the good of their neighbors and also requires them to abide by its teachings,” Denise Harle, senior counsel at Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), the law firm representing the Christian ministries, said in a statement. “Our clients offer spiritual guidance, education, pregnancy support, and athletic opportunities to their communities because of the religious beliefs that motivate them. But Virginia’s new law forces these ministries to abandon and adjust their convictions or pay crippling fines—in direct violation of the Virginia Constitution and other state laws.”

“Such government hostility toward people of faith has no place in a free society,” Harle argued.

The ministries filed a pre-enforcement challenge, a lawsuit designed to convince a court to prevent the government from implementing an unconstitutional law.

In the lawsuit, ADF is representing Calvary Road Christian School in Alexandria (preschool through 6th grade, 250 students), Grace Christian School in Staunton (preschool through 12th grade, 320 students), Community Christian Academy in Charlottesville (K-9, 50 students), and Care Net, a 501(c)3 nonprofit that supports a network of 1,100 pregnancy centers, churches, and other ministry organizations and has approximately 22,000 volunteers.

PJ article continues here

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

A New Jesus People Movement in America': Revival in NJ, NYC, Boston as Move of God Hits East Coast

A revival is when God begins to tug on the hearts of people and call them back to repentance...When God begins to be the first love of His people, that is the spark of love in the hearts. It is the revival of the hearts.

By Andrea Morris

Below is a news report from CBN. This is a departure from Persecution Unveiled reports. This Good News is a glimmer of hope that a genuine move of the Holy Spirit is drawing lost souls to Jesus Christ.   

Huge gatherings of people stepped into the light of salvation as a "move of God" swept parts of the northeastern US last weekend.

Worship leader Sean Feucht and Dr. Charles Karuku with International Outreach Church brought outdoor revival meetings to New Jersey, New York, and Massachusetts.

Despite the rainy weather, worshippers gathered in Lincoln Park, NJ on Friday where the faith leaders shared a message of peace and hope.

"We feel like this rain delay is only making us even more hungry and more passionate," Feucht declared. "This is the stuff worship dreams are made of."

One attendee carried a sign that said "Worship is Warfare" - a testament to the belief that America is facing an escalating spiritual battle these days.

The praise event continued in New York City on Saturday where baptisms took place in the public fountains of the iconic Washington Square Park.

"This place is filled with people about to get baptized in the fountains of Washington Square Park," Feucht said. "Some of them just got saved...some are rededicating."

In a video shared on Facebook, Dr. Karuku described the occasion as a "move of God" after 29 people were baptized Saturday night in NYC, including a family of five.

"We had people getting born again. We kept on baptizing people," Karuku added. "We baptized an entire family of five - it was awesome. They all gave their life to Christ and they came to be baptized."

Just days earlier, Dr. Karuku was in Kenosha, Wisconsin leading the "Riots to Revival" movement where baptisms and worship filled the streets after the city was recently rocked by violence and protests.

1 Killed, 4 Students Kidnapped as Gunmen Invade School, Church in Nigeria

Some international human rights organizations have argued that the violence against Christians in Nigeria is reaching genocidal levels

Students in Nigerian classroom in this undated photo. | (Photo: Christian Solidarity Worldwide)

By Samuel Smith
Christian Post

One person was killed and several others were abducted when suspected Fulani radicals were said to have attacked a secondary school and burned a church in a predominantly Christian village in Nigeria.

According to the London-based human rights watchdog Christian Solidarity Worldwide, the attack occurred at Prince Academy in the Damba-Kasaya Community in Chikun local government area last Monday.

Residents of the area accused Fulani militia of arriving in large numbers around 7:45 a.m. when they are said to have invaded the school, abducted a teacher and four of his students.

The militants also reportedly broke into the Aminchi Baptist Church, destroyed musical instruments and the church’s public address system before setting objects inside the church on fire.

According to witness testimony, 35-year-old Benjamin Auta was killed during the attack and leaves behind a wife and baby.

“Our church, Aminchi Baptist Church, here in Damba Kasaya, was burned, and Mr. Benjamin Auta, aged 35, was killed during the attack,” resident Nuhu Aruwa told Morning Star News.

Although local reports indicated that Auta was killed as he and others pursued the gunmen after they abducted the students and teacher, Aruwa told the nonprofit persecution news outlet that Auta was killed in his house located near the school.

Aruwa stated that in total, the gunmen abducted seven Christian villagers.

“Among them were four students of Prince Academy and one of their teachers,” Aruwa was quoted as saying. “Two other Christian farmers, a woman and a man were captured and taken away too by the herdsmen.”

Residents have identified the kidnapped students as 10-year-old Favour Danjuma, 15-year-old Miracle Saitu Danjuma, 16-year-old Happiness Odoji and 17-year-old Ezra Bako. The abducted teacher has been identified as 29-year-old Christiana Madugu.

“The situation in southern Kaduna is pressing and increasingly desperate. We extend our condolences to the family of Mr. Auta, and our prayers are with those who anxiously await the safe return of their loved ones,” CSW Chief Executive Mervyn Thomas said in a statement.

CSW cited data by the Southern Kaduna People's Union showing that since 2019, at least 45 communities have been displaced and occupied in Kaduna state.

Mission Africa International stated in an August report that several tribal communities in Kaunda, including the Gbagyi, Adara, Chawai and Irigwe communities, have been “displaced from their ancestral lands by Fulani invaders.”

“These apart from the deaths suffered put at above 500 from January to June 2020, the destruction of their home and displacement of 50,000 persons from 109 communities who cannot currently go to farm and harvest their produce,” the report explains. “In some of the communities, they have to pay protection taxes to invaders to get to their farms.”

Thomas urged the Nigerian government to “address this violence and insecurity in an earnest and unbiased manner” and “provide humanitarian assistance for the burgeoning number of displaced people and to guarantee their safe return to their homes and lands.”

“We also call on the European Union and the governments of the U.K. and U.S. to encourage the Kaduna state and federal governments to provide for these IDPs, who continue to rely on NGO and church donations for survival, and to allocate resources towards assisting them as a matter of urgency,” Thomas explained.

Please remember to keep our persecuted brothers and sisters in Nigeria in your prayers.

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Satan and COVID-19

"Certainly, the rampant immorality, persecution of God’s people, killing of babies and genocide of cultural groups are all reasons enough for Him to act." 

"I remember speaking in this room when it was jam-packed with pastors."  Dr. Rev. Jerry Schmoyer,
 Recent Pastor's Conference Attendance in India 
Limited Due to COVID Crisis 

By Rev. Dr. Jerry Schmoyer
Christian Training Organization

The following post was used with permission from the Christian Training Organization. For more information about their ministry and mission please visit their website at


When something bad happens, some people want to know whose fault it is and why it is happening. Some Christians are asking the same question about Covid-19. Is this from Satan? Is this all made up by the government? Is God bringing judgment on the world? Or is it just a fluke of nature? I must admit I wonder about those things myself – or I wouldn’t be writing this blog!

The Covid-19 crisis could be from Satan, who is the god of this world (2 Corinthians 4:4). In Job we see Satan was responsible for Job’s skin disease and other calamities to his family (Job 1-2). Satan loves to murder, destroy (John 8:44), and promote fear. But even if Satan intends it for evil, God will use it for good (Genesis 50:20).

Additionally, Covid could be from God who used plagues as a means of discipline or punishment (Exodus 11:1; 32:35; Leviticus 26:25; 2 Samuel 24:10-17; Jeremiah 21:7; Revelation 6-20). Certainly, the rampant immorality, persecution of God’s people, killing of babies and genocide of cultural groups are all reasons enough for Him to act. Is Covid a warning, like many believe 9-11 was? Could it be part of the early birth pangs predicted before Jesus’ return (Matthew 24:8)? Or is it a natural consequence of the fall and brokenness of nature since the Garden of Eden.

Whatever the reason, God uses all things to accomplish His purposes. (Amos 4:10). If God is sovereign then everything comes back to Him. Even what Satan does is under God’s ultimate authority (1 John 4:4; Job 1-2). So, which is it? I don’t know, and I don’t think we can know.

I can say with confidence Satan loves to use times like these to bring about fear and death. Deaths from suicide and drug overdoses are increasing, as well as those that have already died from the virus. He can ignite political unrest and racial tensions. Economic problems are in his toolbox too. He desires us to be a godless country. Satan will take advantage of anything he can and uses it for his purpose. But God is ultimately in total control (Lamentations 3:37-39; Psalm 115:3; 135:6)

Perhaps if we knew just what God has planned in all this it would help us better adjust and trust. But we don’t know. Trusting in a sovereign God who loves us and wants our best is our solution no matter the cause. He promises to care for us as He does for the sparrows (Matthew 19:29-31). So, whatever is going on, God is still in control and always will be. We are safe in the loving care of our Father Who loves us so much He sent His only Son from heaven to die on the cross for us. We are in good hands (Psalm 30:4).

Colossians 1:16–17 "For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together."

Job 42:2 “I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted.”

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Philly Teacher Worries 'Conservative Parents' Can Now See His Virtual Classes and Catch Him 'Destabilizing' Their Kids

"conservative parents" were his chief concern as a teacher "if we are engaged in the messy work of destabilizing a kid's racism or homophobia or transphobia."

By CBN News

A Philadelphia public school teacher's question on Twitter over the weekend has gone viral after he wondered aloud to the social network's universe that virtual classes might allow parents to hear him indoctrinating their kids.

Matthew Kay, who teaches English at the Science Leadership Academy, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, tweeted over the weekend he's concerned about the "damage" that "helicopter parents" might cause if they overhear lessons on topics such as gender and sexuality, the Daily Wire reported.

The Washington Examiner reports in Philadelphia, students will begin learning through online classes before transitioning to a hybrid learning method of online and in-person classes.

The Daily Wire's Matt Walsh shared screenshots of Kay's post on Sunday before it received a lot of backlash and was set to private.

"Public school teachers are afraid that you might be able to hear them brainwashing your kids," Walsh posted.

"So, this fall, virtual class discussion will have many potential spectators — parents, siblings, etc. — in the same room. We'll never be quite sure who is overhearing the discourse. What does this do for our equity/inclusion work?" Kay tweeted. "How much have students depended on the (somewhat) secure barriers of our physical classrooms to encourage vulnerability? How many of us have installed some version of 'what happens here stays here' to help this?"

Kay continued, writing that "conservative parents" were his chief concern as a teacher "if we are engaged in the messy work of destabilizing a kid's racism or homophobia or transphobia."

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.

Chinese Churches Are Ordered to Praise Socialism, Slander the United States

In Henan, one church was not allowed to reopen because officials did not approve the pastor’s sermons.

By Michael Foust
Christian Headlines

State-approved churches in China that were forced to close due to the pandemic are being allowed to reopen only if they use their sermons for “patriotic education” and to support the Communist Party, according to a new report.

In one region of China, pastors even were required to slander the United States.

The controversy involves churches that are part of the Three-Self movement and that are allowed to operate legally under government restrictions.

The report was released by Bitter Winter, a watchdog that monitors violations of religious liberty in China.

“Those that fail to meet the prerequisites are not allowed to reopen,” Bitter Winter reported.

In June, the Religious Affairs Bureau of Zhengzhou, the capital of the province of Henan, released a list of 42 prerequisites for churches that want to reopen. Among them, churches are to “intensify patriotic education” and “study China’s religious policies,” Bitter Winter reported.

Churches also must promote the so-called “four requirements,” a nationwide campaign that originated in 2018 and involves: 1) requiring religious communities to ritually raise the national flag, 2) promoting the Chinese constitution and laws, 3) promoting “core socialist values,” and, 4) promoting “China’s excellent traditional culture.”

In Henan, one church was not allowed to reopen because officials did not approve the pastor’s sermons.

“None of the 11 places of worship in our area was approved for reopening,” a deacon in the church told Bitter Winter. “We were busy preparing to meet the requirements for reopening, but the government made things difficult for us in every respect.”

Churches that did reopen often left members unhappy about the sermon content.

“Instead of a normal sermon, the preacher talked about the patriotism of medical workers during the epidemic, and their sacrifice to the state,” a member of a Three-Self church told Bitter Winter. “These things are important, but political things were discussed for half of the time. Many believers complained afterward.”

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Wedding Officiant Sues Ohio County over Law Forcing Ministers to Officiate Same-Sex Weddings

“we all lose when bureaucrats can force citizens to participate in religious ceremonies they oppose, speak messages they disagree with and stay silent about beliefs they hold dear.”

Kristi Stokes (center), owner of Covenant Weddings in Cuyahoga, 
County Ohio, interacting with a bride and groom at a wedding 
photo shoot. | Courtesy of ADF

By Anughar Kumar
Christian Post 

An ordained minister in Ohio has filed a federal lawsuit against Cuyahoga County, challenging a law that would require her to officiate same-sex marriage ceremonies or face a fine of $5,000.

Kristi Stokes, an evangelical Christian and the owner of Covenant Weddings, filed the lawsuit this week at the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio.

The county recently passed a law that forbids businesses from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, says the Christian legal firm Alliance Defending Freedom, which filed the suit on behalf of Stokes.

The law applies to any “place for the sale of merchandise to the public, or any other place of public accommodation or amusement where the accommodation advantages, facilities, or privileges thereof are available to the public.”

“Like other ministers, Kristi chooses which weddings to officiate and write about based on her faith,” the lawsuit says. “While Kristi works with and tries to convey God’s love to everyone no matter who they are, she can only celebrate weddings consistent with her beliefs.”

“Since a young age, I’ve dedicated my life to ministry, and today I love serving my community by officiating and writing for weddings,” Stokes said. “My religious beliefs influence every aspect of my life, and I can’t simply put my religious identity into separate personal and professional boxes. If you’re looking for someone to officiate your wedding, and you’re hoping to incorporate a cannabis theme or write prayers to celebrate an open marriage, I’m not your girl.”

The lawsuit says, “… Because Kristi offers wedding services that celebrate marriage between one biological man and one biological woman, the County says she must also provide the same services for weddings that contradict her beliefs or Kristi commits illegal ‘discrimination.’”

This, in turn, means that Stokes “must officiate same-sex weddings, pray over same-sex marriages, write vows calling biological men women, write homilies using incorrect or gender-neutral pronouns (like Per, Xe, and Ze) or face heavy fines, attorney fees, and injunctions,” the suit adds.

The law also forbids Stokes from explaining on her company’s website or social media “that she can only provide wedding services consistent with her religious views on marriage and gender.”

“No one should be forced to officiate ceremonies that conflict with their religious beliefs,” said ADF Senior Counsel Kate Anderson. “Because of Cuyahoga County’s law, Kristi faces an impossible choice: disobey the law, defy her own faith, or ditch her business. Many different religions and countless people of goodwill believe that weddings are sacred ceremonies between one man and one woman.”

Christian Post article continues

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.

Friday, July 31, 2020

Bulgarian Survivor Warns Americans: Socialism 'Is Actually an Anti-Christ System'

For those who think America can have a softer, kinder socialism, Banov wishes they could understand to succeed, it has to take total control, and that means taking away freedoms. He contrasts that to the God who gives freedom and power to care for all.

Georgian Banov (image:via CBN News)

By Paul Strand
CBN News

Surveys show more than half of young Americans would prefer moving to a socialist economy and government. About a third say they'd even opt for communism. 

While things like free college tuition might sound great, it can come with a high cost, such as the government taking away the freedoms we enjoy today. Those who've lived under it warn against it.

Georgian Banov leads worship, often with Christian rock bands, across the world. Not only does he love rocking out for God, but he's also a classical violinist. While Georgian rejoices in his freedom as a Christian, he still mourns over those who suffered for decades in his childhood home of Bulgaria, trapped behind the Iron Curtain.

Burned Them Alive

"They immediately went after killing every capitalist," Banov recalled of the communists who took power. "Because according to Karl Marx, capitalism is the main evil. They make them dig a ditch, they throw them in the ditch, they put oil on them and burn them."

Banov said his grandmother witnessed such mass murders and told him she could never forget the smell of burning flesh.

Socialism, Communism Inextricably Linked

It's important to remember communism and socialism are inextricably linked. After all, the communist USSR was the Union of Soviet SOCIALIST Republics—a system controlling everything, leveling its people out by crushing individual incentive.

"Everybody makes the same amount of money," Banov stated. "So if you're good at something and work hard, you don't get a dime more than the guys who sit and do nothing. So the productivity goes lower and lower and lower. This is very destructive to a successful economy. Now everybody's poor."

"There's nothing to buy because everything is so depleted," Banov said, and remembered the stores in his youth. "The only thing you could buy every day is bread. Whatever came, we'd buy and we ate it right away. And there wasn't enough for you to even refrigerate in your house."

Five Families in a Five-Room Home

This was probably good because he can't recall anyone having a refrigerator. As for him, he remembers being so poor, his family was one of five packed into a five-room home.

Banov also remembers the constant fear of stepping out of line because the communists were constantly watching.

"Unless you're saying things that are in line 100 percent with the communist propaganda doctrine, you get pulled out and eventually you disappear," Banov recalled, remembering the cowed Bulgarians all about him. "They're afraid that if they say something, they're going to get arrested."

What You Can Say, Do, Believe All Dictated to You

And in the schools, one's life, profession, and the beliefs they were allowed to have were all dictated to them.

He said of his instructors at school, "You are directly controlled by a supervisor who is over the teachers, making sure everything you say supports the communists."

Banov pointed out it's not just about economics, but snuffing out God. He explained Karl Marx, the man behind communism and socialism, despised God.

"God, I Hate You and I'll Hurt You"

Banov quoted Marx, saying, "'God, I hate You and I'll hurt You by destroying the people You create for Your glory.' So the whole system is actually an anti-Christ system. They became God. 'Praise us. Glorify the communists.' So it's a religion."

Banov saw how Bulgaria clamped down on Christians with an iron fist, demanding their membership rolls, dictating what could be preached and taking their Bibles. Because the communists couldn't stand that these Christians believed in and submitted to a power higher than the state.

"It is the only enemy that they cannot fight, they know," Banov said of the communists. "So they really pushed Christians, to break them down, to submit to them. And if they don't submit, 'you're out!' Bibles were confiscated. And every Bible press was destroyed."

Meeting in Secret

They especially targeted Spirit-filled Believers.

"They were the most persecuted because they had power. The Holy Spirit gives you power," Banov stated. "So the Holy Spirit people were the most persecuted because they were the most unsubmissive. They didn't give their membership. They meet in secret, only ... underground."

But he pointed out in the end, the communists—just like ancient Rome—couldn't wipe out Christianity.

"Kind of like (what) happened in Rome with the early Roman church," Banov explained. "We're talking about the most powerful war machine in the world—conquered Europe, conquered the Middle East, conquered northern Africa. It couldn't conquer a handful of Believers in its backyard."

CBN News continues here

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.

Anti-Christian Incidents in France Rose 285% Since 2008: Observatory

"perpetrators of church attacks and acts vandalism in France tend to be radical Islamists or people aligned on the radical extremes of the political left, including Antifa movements, anarchists and radical feminists."

Smoke and flames rise from Notre-Dame Cathedral on April 15, 2019, in Paris, France. A fire broke out on Monday afternoon and quickly spread across the building, collapsing the spire. The cause is yet unknown but officials said it was possibly linked to ongoing renovation work. Veronique de Viguerie/Getty Images

By Samuel Smith
Christian Post

There’s been about a 285% increase in the number of “anti-Christian incidents” reported in France over the last decade-plus, according to the head of the Vienna-based Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination Against Christians in Europe.

As six French churches have caught fire in the last year and a half, including the major Cathedral in Nantes last week, government data indicates a stark increase in the number of alleged attacks and acts of vandalism committed against houses of worship since 2008.

“The French government reported 275, what they call, anti-Christian acts [in 2008]," OIDACE Executive Director Ellen Fantini told The Christian Post Monday. "So that is anything from targeting a church in some way with vandalism or a public Christian statue, it could be a Christian cemetery or it could be actual assaults against French Christians with an anti-Christian bias."

"If we look at 2018 and 2019, the numbers are little over 1,000 [per year]. So the increase from 275 to a little over 1,000 works out to 285% increase.”

According to France’s Interior Ministry, there were 1,052 recorded anti-Christian incidents committed in 2019, which mostly consist of attacks on religious property. The 2019 incidents are broken down into 996 "acts" and 56 "threats."

“What is shocking about that actually is how low the government’s numbers are,” the director of the only observatory that covers Christian freedom of conscious issues across all of Europe said.

In addition to the government’s published data on anti-Christian actions, Fantini said that the French government also submits data about hate crimes committed with a bias against Christians to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

However, the government’s data on hate crimes against Christians don’t seem to match the figures the government provides on anti-Christian incidents.

“Those numbers, the most recent figures for hate crimes, were nearly 2,000 in 2018,” she explained. “So when people react with shock when we say that this works out to about three a day, we are taking conservative numbers. When we take even the government’s own numbers of hate crimes against Christians, it works out to more than five a day.”

“It is not clear why those [two sets of] numbers don’t match up. The French government has not been transparent about why those numbers don’t match up. What we can safely say is that the French government reports both of these numbers. It would suggest that the lower figure must be the absolute minimum and the figure given to OSCE is likely accurate, though I suspect even that number is lower than the real figures."

When asked what “anti-Christian incidents” entail, Fantini stated that they tend to be acts of “vandalism with a message.”

“They are not necessarily like graffiti where you could identify what these people want, as compared to Spain. … In France, we see a lot of decapitation of statues, we see the destruction of precious objects. I don’t mean precious by material value but destruction, for example, of consecrated hosts in Catholic churches. There is basically nothing worse you could do in a Catholic church than destroy the consecrated host.”

The researcher added that France sees “a lot” of small intentional fires at churches. Those fires don’t usually burn down the buildings, however.

“There are a lot of broken windows. For something like a broken window, we don’t know if it was a kid playing with a ball or whether it was somebody who hates the church or hates Christians. My organization tends to, if we don’t have any other information, to not really say that we think an incident has an anti-Christian bias," she noted.

“But if they smash a window and destroy things, then we know that is going on. It’s hard to figure out what motivation is because most of the time vandals aren’t caught. Most churches don’t have security cameras. Most churches are open to the public all day long but don’t have security guards. To be honest, I think we only see the visible tip of the iceberg because so many churches across Europe and America as well experience vandalism and simply don’t report it.”

The observatory’s executive director opines that part of the reason there is an increase in attacks and acts vandalism committed at places of worship in France is that the rising secularism in the country “has led the society generally not to think of churches as special sacred places.”

Fantini said perpetrators of church attacks and acts vandalism in France tend to be radical Islamists or people aligned on the radical extremes of the political left, including Antifa movements, anarchists and radical feminists.

“They all set their sights on churches for different reasons,” she said. “In France, we certainly have not seen any kind of far-right attacks on churches. In France, I would say it is sort of the cultural leftists on the extremes as well as the radicalized Islamists. Although we haven’t seen that as much as we did a few years ago.”

Sunday marked the fourth anniversary of the killing of Priest Jacques Hamel during an attack on his Normandy church by two men claimed to be aligned with the Islamic State.

“He was the priest who was beheaded by ISIS sympathizers in the South of France while he was celebrating mass,” she said.

While there is not enough data available to calculate the rise of anti-Christian incidents throughout Europe, Fantini believes that such incidents are “absolutely on the rise everywhere.”

“We see in Germany arsons and vandalism, we see it in Spain, we see it in the U.K. Really, I can’t say that there is any place in Europe where this phenomenon is decreasing,” she warned. “I was just looking at the U.K. The U.K. has a government fund to protect places of worship of all kinds. It was started five years ago and the amount in the fund has already doubled to £3.2 million.”

In Spain, she said churches see quite a lot of “destruction and vandalism.”

“In particular, the anarchist movements, their favorite phrase is: ‘The only church that illuminates is the one that burns,’” the researcher explained. “Every year on International Women’s Day, which is celebrated all over Spain, it is an opportunity for the feminist activists to put their tags on Spanish churches, they destroy things, they protest. Spain is no stranger to the activist left when it comes to targeting churches.” 

Persecution Unveiled has been called to prick the consciences of our nation and all free people to pray for, speak up and act on behalf of those who are persecuted for their faith. Follow us on Pinterest.