Hindu Extremists Beat Pastors, Stop Gospel Event in Chhattisgarh State, India

Hindu Extremists Beat Pastors, Stop Gospel Event in Chhattisgarh State, India

“In the pamphlets we distributed earlier inviting people to attend the meeting, I quoted Luke chapter 7 and verses 22 and 23,” Pastor Jogi said. “The Hindu activists began arguing with us, ‘You are promoting blind beliefs. How can lame walk? How can deaf hear? How can you raise the dead? When your God can do all this, why are you people going to the doctors then?’

Berating and slapping two pastors into signing an apology letter before police, Hindu extremists stopped a planned three-day gospel meeting in Chhattisgarh state, India minutes before it was to begin, sources said.

Hindu nationalists beat pastor Vijay Jogi and pastor Santosh Rao minutes before the start of the first meeting, where about 1,000 people had gathered at the Railway Grounds in Charoda, Durg District on Nov. 16, pastor Amos James told Morning Star News.

“Pastor Vijay Jogi and Pastor Santosh Rao were receiving the people at the entrance,” Pastor James said. “Suddenly a mob of 70 Hindu Dharm Sena and Bajrang Dal activists gheraoed [encircled] the entrance, and Pastor Jogi and Pastor Rao were beaten and summoned to the police station.”

Pastor Jogi told Morning Star News the hard-line Hindus were shouting, “Jai Sri Ram, Jai Sri Ram [Hail lord Ram].”

“The activists slapped Pastor Santosh Rao thrice and beat us both,” Pastor Jogi said. “By then we understood that these people will not let us conduct prayers.”

The 45-year-old father of two received a call from the Government Railway Police at around 6 p.m., minutes before the opening prayer. Police told him come to the police station immediately and warned him to call off the event, he said.

As in the previous 20 years, church leaders had obtained prior permission from both the railway and the railway police to conduct the event, a campaign that in past years has seen many people turn to Christ, he said. The Hindu extremists claimed organizers also needed permission from the sub-judicial magistrate.

“In the pamphlets we distributed earlier inviting people to attend the meeting, I quoted Luke chapter 7 and verses 22 and 23,” Pastor Jogi said. “The Hindu activists began arguing with us, ‘You are promoting blind beliefs. How can lame walk? How can deaf hear? How can you raise the dead? When your God can do all this, why are you people going to the doctors then?’

“They told me it is very wrong that I have written these lines. I said, ‘I did not write these words. It’s a verse taken from the Holy Bible and applies to the entire humankind.”’

Pastor Jogi tried telling them that in those verses Jesus Christ was telling John the Baptist the things people had seen and heard, and they told him, “We are offended by these lines,” he said.

“For which I immediately responded with apologies,” he said, telling them, “If because I quoted these lines in the pamphlet, it is offending you at personal level, I apologize to you brothers. We are very sorry!”

They then questioned them about permission, and Pastor Jogi showed them the railways and Grounds Railway Police permission letter, he said. They told him they needed permission from the sub-judicial magistrate.

“For past 20 years the Railway Grounds has been the venue for gospel meetings, and like every year we only had permission from the Railways and Railway Police since this area falls under the jurisdiction of Charoda Railway Police Station,” Pastor Jogi told Morning Star News.

The Hindu Dharm Sena and Bajrang Dal extremists took them to the police station, as even the Railway Police, for the first time, started questioning whether they had received permission from the sub-judicial magistrate, he said.

“The police told me to settle the matter here and stop the event immediately,” Pastor Jogi said. “I was cautioned while Pastor Rao and I were in the police station that the activists are tearing and burning the banners, breaking the tube lights, chairs and dismantling the stage. The police officer told us even if he lodged a case [against the extremists], it would go strongly against us, and that even he can’t help it. The police did not register an FIR.”

Church leaders had made elaborate preparations to make the facilities ready for the event, but federal and state governments are against Christianity, Pastor Rao said.

“There is very little hope for Christians in a situation like this,” said Pastor Rao, who in 2012 was falsely accused of forcible conversion. “In the police station, we were forced to sign a letter handwritten by the activists under the supervision of BJP [Bharatiya Janata Party] worker Rajguru Ghosale. The letter said by conducting this meeting we hurt the feelings of Hindus, we sincerely apologize for it and cancelling the event. They slapped me to sign it.”

In the presence of police, the Hindu extremists repeatedly badgered the pastor with questions, Pastor Jogi said, asking them, “Why are you calling Hindus to your events? Why are you conducting open gospel meetings publicly? Why are you converting Hindus?”

“Right in front of the police they warned, ‘You must never go to a Hindu’s house, you work among the Christians only,’” Pastor Jogi told Morning Star News. “I told them our Christian meetings and gatherings are open for all. I don’t ask each person who attends the prayers whether they are a Muslim or Hindu. When we gather, it is in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ we gather, and His arms stretch out to everybody.”

Christians in Charoda are living in fear and have not filed any case against the Hindu extremists or police, sources said.

Attorney Son Singh Jhali told the Christian leaders that they could take action against the extremist forces and police, but the pastors declined, he told Morning Star News.

Hindu nationalist groups have gathered several times in Charoda, plotting how to attack Christians, a source who requested anonymity told Morning Star News. Local BJP leaders supply alcohol to youth and instigate them to attack Christians in the state, the source said.

“My daughters, ages 13 and 5, ask me, ‘Why is there so much opposition to the gospel, Dad? Why do they hate Jesus? They hate us because we are Christians?’” Pastor Jogi said with tears in his eyes. “I tell them, ‘They may hate Him, but the Lord still loves them. And, we must love everyone just as our Lord is loving us.’”

The pastors prayed after the forced cancellation of the gospel event.

“We will conduct the gospel meetings again in May. We are not giving up this time. With permissions from all the authorities and government officials, we will conduct the meetings,” Pastor Jogi said. “The activists are following me wherever I go. I know there is threat to my life. But I have dedicated my life fully to my Lord’s work, and I will be at it till my last breath.”

Since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took power in May 2014, the hostile tone of his National Democratic Alliance government, led by the Hindu nationalist BJP, against non-Hindus has emboldened Hindu extremists in several parts of the country to attack Christians, religious rights advocates say.

India ranked 15th on Christian support organization Open Doors’ 2017 World Watch List of the countries where Christians experience the most persecution.


Pastor Dukes Book now published on Amazon and Kendle Proceeds  to be used to pioneer new work in Yerington NV

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Sister Carol Dukes Book now published on Amazon

Eviction of Pastors Upheld, Scores of Christians in Court as Sudan Takes Over Church Properties

Location of Omdurman, Sudan. (Wikipedia)

JUBASouth Sudan (Morning Star News) – An Islamist judge in Sudan upheld the eviction of two pastors from their church-owned homes while 60 other Christians have been summoned to court over their refusal to relinquish property, sources said.

Judge Adam Tahir Haj Adam on Dec. 3 rejected an appeal of the Aug. 15 eviction of the Rev. Yahia Abdelrahim Nalu, Sudan Presbyterian Evangelical Church (SPEC) moderator, and the Rev. Sidiq Abdalla, a SPEC pastor, from their homes. In what Christians in Sudan believe is a campaign to take over church property, Adam ruled that Muslim businessman Hisham Hamad Al-Neel should take over the houses.

“All appeals presented are rejected, and implantation of court order should continue,” the court order read.

The two pastors and their families remain homeless since police raided their houses on Aug. 15 and evicted them. Pastor Abdalla has two children, ages 8 and 10, and Pastor Nalu has a 1-year-old boy. The SPEC leaders have presented another appeal to the high court, and a ruling is expected before the end of the year.

More than 60 church leaders are facing charges in various courts in Khartoum for refusal to hand over church lands and estates to Al-Neel, sources said. A group of 25 SPEC leaders on Nov. 28 appeared in a court in Omdurman, across the Nile River from Khartoum, after Al-Neel accused them of refusing to hand over church property that he claimed to own, they said.

Al-Neel is attempting to take over SPEC properties in Khartoum and Khartoum Bahri (Khartoum North). He is the Muslim businessman behind nearly all the cases filed to obtain church property, a source who requested anonymity told Morning Star News.

“Almost all the cases were opened by Hisham,” the source said.

The judge rejected the petition of the two evicted SPEC pastors even though the Aug. 15 eviction order referred to another house, No. 567, rather than that of one of the pastors, No. 772, a source said. The order does not name the occupants to be evicted, only the properties.

SPEC leaders said they believe the ruling could result in the imminent demolition of at least one of the church-owned houses.

“We need prayers from everyone,” Pastor Nalu said.

Among those on trial over SPEC properties is church elder Yohanna Tia, who appeared at a hearing on Nov. 28 after he was accused of attacking someone during an April raid by police and a mob on an evangelical school. Al-Neel also opened that case.

Harassment, arrests and persecution of Christians have intensified since the secession of South Sudan in July 2011. The Sudanese Minister of Guidance and Endowments announced in April 2013 that no new licenses would be granted for building new churches in Sudan, citing a decrease in the South Sudanese population.

Sudan since 2012 has expelled foreign Christians and bulldozed church buildings on the pretext that they belonged to South Sudanese. Besides raiding Christian bookstores and arresting Christians, authorities threatened to kill South Sudanese Christians who do not leave or cooperate with them in their effort to find other Christians.

Sudan fought a civil war with the south Sudanese from 1983 to 2005, and in June 2011, shortly before the secession of South Sudan the following month, the government began fighting a rebel group in the Nuba Mountains that has its roots in South Sudan.

Due to its treatment of Christians and other human rights violations, Sudan has been designated a Country of Particular Concern by the U.S. State Department since 1999, and the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom recommended the country remain on the list in its 2017 report.

Sudan ranked fifth on Christian support organization Open Doors’ 2017 World Watch List of countries where Christians face most persecution.


 

Pastor Dukes Book now published on Amazon and Kendle Proceeds  to be used to pioneer new work in Yerington NV

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Sister Carol Dukes Book now published on Amazon

Christian in Uganda Who Lost Family to Muslims Beaten Unconscious

Islamic extremists attacked former sheikh Mulangira Ibrahim. (Morning Star News)

NAIROBIKenya (Morning Star News) – A former sheikh (Islamic teacher) in eastern Uganda has been in hiding since he lost his family for putting his faith in Christ two years ago, but last month he was tricked into a life-threatening encounter.

Mulangira Ibrahim, 27, was on his way to his pastor’s house after a church service on Lake Victoria’s Jaguzi Island, in Mayuge District, the evening of Nov. 16 when he received a telephone call from an unknown person saying the pastor wanted to see him back at the church compound.

Without a second thought, Ibrahim turned around.

“On my way to the church premise, four people stopped me and then got hold of me and started threatening me that if I do not recant Christianity and return to Islam, then they were going to kill me,” Ibrahim told Morning Star News. “I did not answer them, and one began slapping me, while another hit me with a blunt object. As I started screaming for help, I received more blows and from there I lost my consciousness.”

When he came to, he found himself surrounded by police, the pastor and church members, he said. Pastor Charles Musana of the Evangel World Vision Church rushed Ibrahim to a nearby dispensary for medication.

“Ibrahim suffered backache, head and leg injuries, and we found him in a pool of blood,” Pastor Musana said. “We rushed him to a Jaguzi dispensary, and the following day we recorded the incident with the police under police Reference No. SD 14/19/11/2017 on life-threatening violence.”

Ibrahim is now recovering at the pastor’s house.

“The attack was so severe that it will take more than a month for Ibrahim to recover from the multiple injuries,” the pastor said.

Since his conversion two years ago, area Muslims took his wife, Nalunkuma Joweria, and their three children ages 8, 6 and 4, from him upon learning that he had left Islam, he said.

From Butegwa village, Bukooli County in Bugiri District, Ibrahim had been sent to propagate Islam on the island of Jaguzi as the sheikh of Madrasat Noor Islamia Mosque.

On the island, he had a vision in which he saw himself holding a Bible, followed by another in which he was attending Islamic studies in Iran, he said. Most Iranians practice Shia Islam, anathema to Sunni Muslims in Uganda, but in any case Ibrahim said both visions troubled him.

He decided to visit the pastor of the Evangel World Vision Church and, to allay any religious tensions, he asked a small Muslim child from the Islamic school where he taught to accompany him and inform the pastor that he was outside the church offices, Ibrahim said.

Upon arrival to the door of the church building, he said, he was temporarily blinded in such a way that he fell to the ground, and the child became frightened and ran to the nearby mosque shouting, “The sheikh has been killed by the Christians.”

The pastor said he came out of his office and found Ibrahim on the ground praising Jesus. Muslims who dashed to the site also found Ibrahim praising Issa, Jesus Christ, as Lord. They beat him before fleeing when a large number of Christians arrived. It was Oct. 4, 2015.

The area Muslims went to Ibrahim’s house and took away his wife and children. Ibrahim said they left behind a written note that he should not return to the house, which they had rented for him. They also terminated his services as sheikh of Madrasat Noor Islamia Mosque.

Back at his home in Butegwa village, his Muslim family took his house away and sold its plot of land, rendering him homeless, he said.

“Since then, life became very difficult for me,” Ibrahim told Morning Star News. “I had no place to lay my head. But thank God the church gave me a place to reside within the church compound.”

Immediately after becoming a Christian, Ibrahim began receiving threatening messages.

“For the last two years I have confined myself within the church compound and pastor’s house, which is 1.5 kilometers away, as Muslims are continually posting messages that they needed my head because I ditched Islam,” he told Morning Star News by phone.

Police are investigating the Nov. 16 assault but have not arrested anyone, sources said.

The incident is one of many recent attacks by non-state figures on Christians in eastern Uganda. Uganda’s constitution and other laws provide for religious freedom, including the right to propagate one’s faith and convert from one faith to another.

Muslims make up no more than 12 percent of Uganda’s population, with many concentrated in the eastern part of the country.


‘They wanted to silence the Apostolic preacher who converts Muslims to Christianity’ (Video)

African Pastor: ‘They Wanted to Silence the Preacher Who Converts Muslims to Christianity’Four years ago today, an eruption of violence in the capital of the Central African Republic, Bangui, left dozens dead and shattered the lives of many others.

An attempt by Anti-Balaka (“anti-machete”) vigilantes to oust rebel leader Michel Djotodia, who had swept across the country into the capital to proclaim himself President, led to a violent counter-offensive by Djotodia’s militants, known as Séléka.

Pastors Jean-Eric Vogbia and Gilbert Bogolo were among the Christians who lived in PK5, a predominantly Muslim neighborhood of Bangui, at the time.

On the day of the attack – 5 December 2013 – they became the prime targets of Séléka militants. Pastor Vogbia lost his eldest son; they both lost their churches and properties.

Four years on, the scars of that dramatic day are still fresh.

Killing squad
It was still dark when the first rifle shots and grenade explosions erupted in the heavily populated area of PK5. Many were still in bed, including Pastor Vogbia and his family.

At about 4 am, as the detonations intensified and got closer, his wife, children, and other relatives fled the family compound – a set of three to four residences, inherited from parents.

Pastor Jean-Eric Vogbia. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
Vogbia and his brother were left behind in the compound, but also decided to flee as the situation became uncertain.

Bangui in the predominantly Muslim neighbourhood of PK5. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)

“As we were about to leave the neighborhood, we were stopped by two heavily-armed Séléka militants,” Vogbia recalls. “One of them, who seemed to know us, told me in Arabic: ‘The God you serve has already saved you. Keep going’.”

At about 8 am, Vogbia’s phone rang and a voice said: “We are at your place. We have destroyed everything and set the compound ablaze.”

Vogbia’s eldest son – a second-year medical student – was at the university and knew nothing about the situation at home.

“We tried to contact him on the phone, but he was not reachable,” Vogbia explains. “At about 12 noon, my phone rang again and a voice said: ‘The boy was killed. We didn’t plan it, but as we missed you, we had to kill him’.”

Vogbia and his family were devastated. Since then, his wife has developed trauma-related reactions.

“Each year, during the first week of December, she will have some crisis, which can last for two to three days,” Vogbia says. “Though she had some counseling sessions, she is not completely healed.”

‘We were terrified’
Until 5 December 2013, Gilbert Bogolo was the pastor of a church that hosted more than 500 worshippers each Sunday. He also used to work for a petroleum company and was well-off.

Today, as he revisits the ruins of his house, and his church, now surrounded by wild plants, he can’t hide his emotions. (Video in French – if subtitles don’t automatically appear, click ‘CC’ at the bottom-right of the video.)

“We were terrified by the detonations of automatic weapons,” he recalls. “My family and I stayed indoors the whole day, praying and waiting for the situation to calm. As I looked over the fence, I saw Séléka militants shooting randomly at people passing by. Even animals were not spared.

“Two armed militants passed a few metres away from our gate, without touching it. Maybe they thought we had already fled as the neighborhood seemed empty.”

The next day, as the shootings lessened, Bogolo and his family fled to the Mpoko camp near the airport, where thousands sought refuge.

The living conditions in the camp were appalling, says Bogolo. People were exposed to the elements, such as the heat of the sun, torrential rain, combined with mosquitoes. There weren’t enough toilets or drinking water to accommodate everyone.

Food aid distributions often turned into mass brawls between the internally displaced people (IDPs). Moreover, Anti-Balaka militants were active within the camp.

“They pretended to protect the displaced people from Séléka, but instead, they extorted money and valuables from defenseless IDPs,” Bogolo says. “Though French soldiers were all over the camp, they didn’t care about our situation.”

Bogolo describes their three months as a “humiliating experience”; his wife and their ten children were left with nothing to sleep on but some pieces of cardboard boxes.

“But one night as I was praying, I had a vision: it was like a voice telling me: ‘Do not be worried, do not be worried’,” he says. “Since then I was filled with peace and I regained strength to encourage other IDPs.”

Bogolo and his family eventually left the camp and moved to a rented house.

The ruins of Pastor Bogolo’s house, destroyed by Séléka militants in December 2013. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
‘A new beginning is possible’
Four years later, Vogbia and Bogolo have no hard feelings. They say they want to move on.

“What happened was a punitive act because of my Muslim background,” Vogbia says. “They wanted to silence the preacher who converts Muslims to Christianity.

“It was also an attempt to chase us away from our ancestral lands. Many have already sold their properties (in PK5) and left for other areas of the city.

“Each time I pass by the ruins of our family compound, now invaded by wild plants, I feel bad. But I need to overcome my anger and act with love towards my Muslim brothers and friends.”

With God a new beginning is possible, says Bogolo: “Maybe one day we will understand why he allowed us to go through this painful experience.”

His church now gathers in a tent erected in the backyard of a church member’s house, who generously offered the space to the church.

“It’s not the big attendance of the old days, but the remaining members are more committed than ever,” he says. “The donations we receive on Sundays are greater than ever.”

The church has bought a new plot of land and is planning to build another church building.

Pastor Bogolo and his church now gather in a tent erected in the backyard of a house. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
Fighting extremism
Pastors Vogbia and Bogolo say there is an extremist ideology which fuels the violence among communities, irrespective of their religious background, and that many have been dragged into that way of thinking.

Vogbia and Bogolo have pledged to work hard to regain trust between Christian and Muslim communities by promoting dialogue.

Yet despite the prevailing calm, they both agree that it’s too soon to think about moving home to their PK5 neighborhood.

Last month, on 11 November, seven people were killed after an attack on a concert organized by young Christians and Muslims to aid reconciliation between the two communities.

The attack has raised the fear of a new wave of violence and prompted many traders to close their shops, and some residents to flee to other areas of the capital.


Pastor Dukes Book now published on Amazon and Kendle Proceeds  to be used to pioneer new work in Yerington NV

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Sister Carol Dukes Book now published on Amazon

Government Officials Break into Jiangxi Church, Assault Elderly, and Vandalize Property

International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that on the morning of November 21, more than 100 government officers in uniform raided the Beimen (North Gate) Catholic Church in the city of Ji’an in Jiangxi Province. They tore religious posters, shattered religious icons and statues, and injured four elderly Catholics who were defending the church.

These officers from City Urban Administrative and Law Enforcement Bureau, commonly known as Chengguan, are part of city management agencies responsible for handling daily aspects of urban life. They are notorious for their use of violence and capricious crackdowns. In this instance, they were employed to confiscate the church property, although they had no legal basis for doing so.

 

According to UCA News, Bishop John Baptist Li Suguang of Jiangxi asked priests to spread news of the raid to the public. The next day, priests and approximately 70 Catholics from the area marched with banners to Ji’an City government offices and demanded apologies from the authorities and that those responsible for the violence be punished.


Fearful of the situation getting out of hand, the Ji’an government has agreed to negotiate with the church, investigate the use of violence by Chengguan, and compensate the injured. Priests already began negotiation with the government on November 27.

 

After 1949, the Communist Party has illegally occupied a large amount of church property and religious venues throughout China. According to the document enacted by the State Council in 1980, government agencies shall return all the property to the churches and religious groups. In reality, that rarely happens.

 

A wealthy French Catholic widow donated the land, as well as an ancillary building, rectory, convent, hospital, and farmland to Ji’an North Gate Church in the late 19thcentury. Ji’an’s local Press and Publication Bureau of Culture, Radio and Television has sought to occupy the church for its use, but only successfully occupied the ancillary building after rounds of negotiation with local Catholics.

 

Ironically, on September 10, the priests of North Gate Church held a public cross installation ceremony and the news was even reported on Chinese Catholic website Xinde Net, as vetted by the government.  Yet two months later, the government took brutal action to claim something they don’t own.

 

In a prayer request published on a Chinese website, the author asked Catholics to “pray for the Lord to watch over the faithful there so that they will be treated in a fair and just manner. Based on the principle of rule of law, we will also use non-violent, peaceful means to fight for what we should get and what was ours originally.”

 

Gina Goh, ICC’s Regional Manager, said, “While it is not uncommon for the Chinese government to illegally occupy confiscated church property meant to be returned to the church according to State Council, the use of force and menace against innocent believers is barbaric and contradicts rule of law which President Xi Jinping has faithfully promoted. The Ji’an government should investigate the thug-like behavior of its workers and return all property to the faithful of North Gate Church, where it belongs.”


Nigeria: British missionary shot dead after singing Amazing Grace

A British medical missionary kidnapped in Nigeria was shot dead after trying to encourage his fellow hostages by playing “Amazing Grace” on his acoustic guitar, two of his fellow missionaries reported to The Telegraph.

Ian Squire, 57, an optician, passed into the arms of his Savior after he was hit by a torrent of bullets fired by one of the gunmen that abducted the four missionaries from their clinic in the southern Delta region on October 13th.

Fellow hostages David and Shirley Donovan said he was killed the morning after they were kidnapped. The four had been hidden by their abductors in a bamboo hut in a remote swamp

Dr. Squire invented a solar-powered lens cutting machine that enabled the production of prescription glasses in remote regions, Dr. Donovan told The Telegraph.

“Ian was a man of faith, humor, music and invention,” Dr. Donovan added. “The techniques he brought were revolutionary.”

Dr. Donovan said the group’s spirits were lifted when the kidnappers returned a guitar and Dr. Squire played “Amazing Grace.”

“It was the perfect song, and at that point things began to look not quite as bad. But then, after Ian finished playing, he stood up, and a salvo of gunshots killed him instantly.”

None of the hostages saw the shooter, but it was clear that someone in the gang was responsible. “It was terrifying to see. We jumped out of the shack and into the water as we thought they were coming for us next, but a member of the gang came and put us back in there with Ian for the rest of the day.”

Alanna Carson

The Donovans, together with a fourth hostage, optometrist Alanna Carson, were freed three weeks later after the payment of a ransom, thought to have been negotiated by the Nigerian government and the British High Commission.

Monica Chard, a friend of Squire’s, told the Daily Mail: ‘He was a lovely, quiet man who everyone knew and loved as the village optician. He touched so many hearts with his kindness and grace.”

“He went out to Africa every year with the charity and his wife was also involved. He just wanted to help people see who otherwise would not have had any help. His widow must be devastated, especially after three weeks of hell waiting to find out if he was alive.”

In a statement released by the Foreign Office after Squire’s death, the family said: ‘We are all deeply saddened by the loss of Ian, a loving father, husband, and devout Christian, who dedicated much of his life in the service of others.”

Authorities are searching for the perpetrators from the gang, and it is thought that several have already been arrested or killed. The leader, Karowei Gbakumor, whose followers refer to him as “The General”, is still at large, according to The Telegraph.

Earlier this month, locals in Enekorogha held a demonstration against the gang, amid fears that the kidnapping would lead to the clinic’s permanent closure, although Dr. Donovan hopes it will stay open.

Procession of mourners grieving the death of Dr. Squire

“I would love to go back but I think the Nigerian authorities might be worried about us returning there, partly because the gang is not yet caught,” he said. “But our local workers can more or less run the clinic without us now anyway, which was always our aim in the first place.”


Somali Muslims Break In, Beat Children of Christian Widow in Kenya

Somali Muslims Break In, Beat Children of Christian Widow in Kenya

Hard-line Muslims on the outskirts of Nairobi, Kenya attacked a Christian widow’s children, ages 13, 17 and 21, leaving two of them seriously injured and still in pain 11 days after the assault, sources said.

Hadiya (surname withheld), an immigrant from Somalia, had not yet returned from a trip to a funeral when the assailants of Somali descent broke into her home at a town (undisclosed for security reasons) outside of Nairobi, at 5:30 a.m. on Nov. 17.

Hadiya’s 17-year-old daughter was asleep in her room, while the brothers (siblings’ names withheld for security reasons) were asleep in the front room, when the Muslim gang knocked on their door, the older brother told Morning Star News. The brothers asked who was at the door.

Refusing to identify themselves, the Muslims smashed a window, the older brother said.

“We have warned you several times to stop taking the children to church,” one shouted, he said. “You have become an embarrassment to our clan as well as the entire Muslim community. We are here today to finish you and your children.”

Their sister began screaming as the assailants broke in through the window, and the three siblings tried to escape through the door, Hadiya said. The gang beat them so much that blood was found throughout the front room, a Christian neighbor told Morning Star News.

Neighbors soon arrived and rescued the three children.

“When we arrived at the scene of the incident, the attackers fled,” the neighbor told Morning Star News. “We took the three to a nearby clinic before their mother arrived and then transferred them to a government health center, where the youngest child was discharged, while two who were seriously injured were admitted for four days.”

The younger brother suffered injuries to his left leg, neck and chest, while the older brother sustained injuries to his head, chest and back from a blunt object and remains very weak, according to the neighbor. Their sister, who received heavy blows and kicks, bled from her nose and sustained a rib injury, he said. A doctor’s reports corroborated his assessment of the injuries.

A recent follow-up visit to the doctor showed the older brother and sister need x-rays as they remain in continuous pain, Hadiya told Morning Star News by phone.

“We are living in great fear and experience sleepless nights,” she said. “It is not safe for us to stay in this particular place. We need prayers and financial help at this difficult moment.”

Having fled Somalia more than 13 years ago after the death of her husband, Hadiya has eight children – two from remarriage, though her second husband recanted his Christian faith amid a wave of persecution and returned to Somalia in 2010.

Somalis generally believe all Somalis are Muslims by birth and that consequently any Somali who becomes a Christian can be charged with apostasy, punishable by death. Kenya ranked 18th on Christian support organization Open Doors’ 2017 World Watch List of the 50 countries where it is most difficult to be a Christian.

Hadiya said her family has suffered various attacks since embracing Christ. After she filed a police complaint about an attack by Somali Muslims in Kenya in 2014, no fewer than 10 Islamic elders visited her to warn that she was risking her life by doing so.

Last year Somali Muslims attacked another of her adult sons, beating him unconscious.

Muslim Somalis in Nairobi had seriously injured the same son on Oct. 27, 2011, after they learned that family members had become Christian. The Somali neighbors hit him with a metal bar on his forehead and face, and he lost two teeth and sustained knife wounds to his hand. They left him for dead.

“My family has experienced difficult times since the time we embraced the Christian faith, but God has been always coming to our rescue and meeting our needs,” Hadiya said. “We are grateful to the church and good Samaritans who have stood with my family in trying moments. We are at crossroads. But how long will this kind of life and persecution continue?”

She called for the government to offer protection.

“We will not recant the Christian faith,” she said. “We will continue putting our faith in God.”


Pastor Dukes Book now published on Amazon and Kendle Proceeds  to be used to pioneer new work in Yerington NV.Sister Carol Dukes Book now published on Amazon

Christian Family in India Receives Notice to Stop Worship in Their Home

Mahendra Nagdeve and his wife at their home in Madhyra Pradesh, India. (Morning Star News)

HYDERABADIndia (Morning Star News) – For 12 years Mahendra Nagdeve had met with friends and relatives in his house in Madhya Pradesh state, India to worship Christ until he received this notice from city officials this month:

“With effect from the moment you receive this notice, you must not conduct any Christian congregational activity,” the notice read, translated from the Hindi. “If you continue any Christian activities despite receiving the notice, stringent action will be taken against you.”

No official from the Nagar Palika Balaghat municipality had visited to give the 45-year-old father of three any indication that Christian activities in his home in the Lanji area of Balaghat District were problematic, he said. The activities included Bible study with other families and his wife’s Christian women’s group.

The Nov. 8 notice came as a surprise.

“No officials visited my house to check if it is a house or church,” he told Morning Star News. “I have been paying house tax, electricity and water bills promptly. Unless for the purpose of issuing the bills and collecting any payments, the municipal employees had never contacted me, they never had an objection.”

He and his family attend a local church, but the former Hindu said that when he gave up idol worship 13 years ago, he also began worshipping Jesus Christ in his home with his family and other relatives.

“I immediately submitted a response to the municipal officials stating it is my own house where I live with my family, and I had been praying peacefully in this house for 13 years now,” he said. “Even my friends and relatives join us and we pray together.”

Just as Hindus in India allot a room used as a mandir (temple) in their houses, Nagdeve set aside a prayer hall within his home, he said.

“We constructed this house after taking prior permission from the municipal authorities in 2005,” Nagdeve said. “Our journey in faith continued, and my wife uses the prayer hall space to pray with women as a sisters meeting, and some families also gather with us to study the Bible, but I am not professionally a pastor.”

As a house, his home is not subject to the permissions required of a church building, he said.

“Our prayers have never been a disturbance to anyone,” he said. “We pray peacefully within the four walls of my house, and from my residence to as far as 200 meters there is not a single house or any construction.”

The chief officer of the Balaghat municipal council, Chandra Kisore Bawre, told Morning Star News that “neighbors” had complained.

“The problem is when people apply for permission to construct a building, they don’t disclose the purpose, and we grant permission to only construct a house to live in it, but when the neighbors come to us with complaints, we must take action,” Bawre said.

Asked whether a family cannot pray together in their own home, Bawre said people in India are free to practice any religion. He acknowledged outside pressure to issue the notice.

“It was under the pressure by some people,” he said. “I issued the notice, but I did not take any action as yet. I will look into the matter soon.”

Hindu nationalists compelled Bawre to issue the notice, a source who requested anonymity told Morning Star News.

“They suspect Nagdeve forcibly converts Hindus, but it is not true,” the source said. “They should have enquired on this. The officials did not follow a protocol; it is clearly abuse of power.”

Nagdeve was frustrated in his own effort to contact the chief municipal officer.

“Despite calling the chief municipal officer’s chamber for appointment a number of times, I couldn’t meet him to submit my pleas,” he told Morning Star News.

Nagdeve did reach the municipal director, Mira Samrithey, telling her that his house was not subject to church building regulations/permits, and that his family studies the Bible and prays together in their home as anyone else does.

He said the municipal director told him, “The orders came from the senior officials, and we understand what the church activities are. When you’re granted the permission to construct a house, how can you conduct church services? Till you receive the permission to conduct church services, you must not use the building for worship and Christian activities.”

His attorney, Anil Maglani, told Morning Star News that the municipal authorities have interfered in the personal life of a citizen.

“We issued a notice to the municipal officials saying they are exploiting the religious beliefs of Nagdeve,” Maglani said. “What’s happening in his house, and which God he prays to inside the house, and whom he is praying to is totally personal, and no authority should intervene in this matter.”

The attorney said his team will take court action if necessary, but that thus far they have only asked for a legal basis for stopping people from praying in their house.

Another attorney who requested anonymity said there is no legal basis for stopping worship inside a house in India.

“Constitutional courts have issued judgments in the past clearly saying that if any gathering is happening inside a person’s home for any Christian activity, they need not take any permission from anyone, because after the meeting that particular house will be used as a house,” he said. “It is not designated for that particular purpose alone. But when it comes to a church, there’s a definite purpose behind its construction; it is meant for some faith-based, religious activity. Whereas when a building or any space is exclusively used as a place of worship, the law mandates to obtain permission from the officials.”

Nagdeve said he has not met with friends and relatives for Christian activities since receiving the notice.

“There is strength in fellowship and meeting together of believers to pray and worship the Lord,” he said. “We glorify Him when we keep aside all the activities and spend time with Him regularly. The prayer hall is a part of my house, it is not a church, and I am not a pastor. In my own house, I am hiding and praying privately. Please pray for us.”

Since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took power in May 2014, the hostile tone of his National Democratic Alliance government, led by the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), against non-Hindus has emboldened Hindu extremists in several parts of the country to attack Christians, religious rights advocates say.


Pastor Dukes Book now published on Amazon and Kendle Proceeds  to be used to pioneer new work in Yerington NV.Sister Carol Dukes Book now published on Amazon

Jesus banned from D.C. buses, but ‘gay’ hookup ads OK

FOX NEWS) — The Archdiocese of Washington wanted to extend an invitation to commuters to find the perfect Christmas gift by advertising on city buses, but the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) threw up a roadblock.

The advertisement depicted silhouettes of three shepherds walking at night with tall canes and sheep beneath a shining North Star. Emblazoned across the ad is the phrase: “FIND THE PERFECT GIFT.”

But the transit authority rejected the ad because it “depicts a religious scene and thus seeks to promote religion,” according to a federal lawsuit filed by the Archdiocese of Washington against the WMATA.

“To borrow from a favorite Christmas story, under WMATA’s guidelines, if the ads are about packages, boxes or bags… if Christmas comes from a store… then it seems WMATA approves,” spokesman Ed McFadden said in a statement. “But if Christmas means a little bit more, WMATA plays Grinch.”

The transit authority might have reconsidered its ban on the Catholic Church’s advertisement had they been selling goods and services, the lawsuit alleges. However, as we all know – the perfect Christmas gift cannot be bought. The perfect gift came from a much Higher Authority.

The WMATA issued this statement:

“In 2015, WMATA changed its advertising space to a nonpublic and prohibits issue-oriented advertising, including political, religious and advocacy advertising. The ad in question was declined because it is prohibited by WMATA’s current advertising guidelines.”

WMATA’s revised advertising guidelines prohibit “advertisements that promote or oppose any religion, religious practice or belief,” the Archdiocese alleges.

“We believe rejection of this ad to be a clear violation of fundamental free speech and a limitation on the exercise of our faith,” general counsel Kim Fiorentino said in a statement. “We look forward to presenting our case to affirm the right of all to express such viewpoints in the public square.”

And while the Archdiocese of Washington may not be welcome to advertise on public buses, the transit authority is more than happy to promote other enterprises – like gay hookup websites.

In 2016 the transit authority defended its decision to allow Squirt.org to advertise citing First Amendment rights, CNS News reported.

In other words, the transit authority’s decision to banish the Archdiocese is not nice – and definitely naughty.


“We will not recant our Christian faith,” she said. “We will continue putting our faith in God.”

Somali Muslims Break-In, Beat Children of Christian Widow in Kenya

Mother of children attacked outside Nairobi, Kenya. (Morning-Star-News)

NAIROBIKenya (Morning Star News) – Hard-line Muslims on the outskirts of Nairobi, Kenya attacked a Christian widow’s children, ages 13, 17 and 21, leaving two of them seriously injured and still in pain 11 days after the assault, sources said.

Hadiya (surname withheld), an immigrant from Somalia, had not yet returned from a trip to a funeral when the assailants of Somali descent broke into her home at a town (undisclosed for security reasons) outside of Nairobi, at 5:30 a.m. on Nov. 17.

Hadiya’s 17-year-old daughter was asleep in her room, while the brothers (siblings’ names withheld for security reasons) were asleep in the front room, when the Muslim gang knocked on their door, the older brother told Morning Star News. The brothers asked who was at the door.

Refusing to identify themselves, the Muslims smashed a window, the older brother said.

“We have warned you several times to stop taking the children to church,” one shouted, he said. “You have become an embarrassment to our clan as well as the entire Muslim community. We are here today to finish you and your children.”

Their sister began screaming as the assailants broke in through the window, and the three siblings tried to escape through the door, Hadiya said. The gang beat them so much that blood was found throughout the front room, a Christian neighbor told Morning Star News.

Neighbors soon arrived and rescued the three children.

“When we arrived at the scene of the incident, the attackers fled,” the neighbor told Morning Star News. “We took the three to a nearby clinic before their mother arrived and then transferred them to a government health center, where the youngest child was discharged, while two who were seriously injured were admitted for four days.”

The younger brother suffered injuries to his left leg, neck and chest, while the older brother sustained injuries to his head, chest and back from a blunt object and remains very weak, according to the neighbor. Their sister, who received heavy blows and kicks, bled from her nose and sustained a rib injury, he said. A doctor’s reports corroborated his assessment of the injuries.

A recent follow-up visit to the doctor showed the older brother and sister need X-rays as they remain in continuous pain, Hadiya told Morning Star News by phone.

“We are living in great fear and experience sleepless nights,” she said. “It is not safe for us to stay in this particular place. We need prayers and financial help at this difficult moment.”

Having fled Somalia more than 13 years ago after the death of her husband, Hadiya has eight children – two from remarriage, though her second husband recanted his Christian faith amid a wave of persecution and returned to Somalia in 2010.

Somalis generally believe all Somalis are Muslims by birth and that consequently any Somali who becomes a Christian can be charged with apostasy, punishable by death. Kenya ranked 18th on Christian support organization Open Doors’ 2017 World Watch List of the 50 countries where it is most difficult to be a Christian.

Hadiya said her family has suffered various attacks since embracing Christ. After she filed a police complaint about an attack by Somali Muslims in Kenya in 2014, no fewer than 10 Islamic elders visited her to warn that she was risking her life by doing so.

Last year Somali Muslims attacked another of her adult sons, beating him unconscious.

Muslim Somalis in Nairobi had seriously injured the same son on Oct. 27, 2011, after they learned that family members had become Christian. The Somali neighbors hit him with a metal bar on his forehead and face, and he lost two teeth and sustained knife wounds to his hand. They left him for dead.

“My family has experienced difficult times since the time we embraced the Christian faith, but God has been always coming to our rescue and meeting our needs,” Hadiya said. “We are grateful to the church and good Samaritans who have stood with my family in trying moments. We are at crossroads. But how long will this kind of life and persecution continue?”

She called for the government to offer protection.