red wednesday religious persecution
Christian Persecution

Religious persecution: Houses of Parliament to be floodlit red on 22nd November

22nd November is Red Wednesday. The Palace of Westminster will be bathed in red, along with Westminster Abbey, Westminster Cathedral, Lambeth Palace, and many churches and cathedrals across the United Kingdom. Last year synagogues and mosques also joined in, for Red Wednesday is set aside as the day we shine a light on all those who are persecuted for their religious belief, and stand up for faith and freedom for all.

Red Wednesday is the initiative of Aid to the Church in Need, which supports the faithful wherever they are persecuted, oppressed or in need. They write:

The decision for the iconic building in central London to go red on the evening of Wednesday, 22nd November was made jointly by John Bercow MP, the Speaker of the House of Commons and Lord Fowler, Speaker of the House of Lords.

Both Speakers were lobbied by parliamentarians, many of whom had been contacted by constituents inspired by #RedWednesday’s message of religious tolerance.

…At 6pm on 22nd November a solidarity service will take place outside Westminster Cathedral, with talks, witness testimonies, a video message by MP Jacob Rees-Mogg, music and speeches by Coptic Orthodox Bishop Angaelos, Neville Kyrke-Smith, National Director, Aid to the Church in Need (UK) and Mervyn Thomas, Chief Executive of Christian Solidarity Worldwide.

Throughout the day, a traditional London red bus emblazoned with #RedWednesday slogans will be criss-crossing the capital, stopping at London landmarks.

The objective is to heighten awareness of the fact that Christians are now the most persecuted people on earth. In Egypt:

…On Friday 26th May 2017 militants ordered the pilgrims off the buses – and demanded that they renounce their Christian faith and make the Islamic profession of belief. When the Christians refused they were killed with a single gunshot to the head or throat.

In Nigeria:

…Their churches desecrated; their loved ones slaughtered – and not to mention the women, girls and young men who have been kidnapped or forced into suicide missions.

In Eritrea:

…The Eritrean Orthodox Church has been crushed in to submission.After its head Patriarch Abune Antonios was put under house arrest in 2007, for refusing to excommunicate 3,000 members who opposed the government, the state imposed a layman as leader of the Church to ensure its control.

In Iraq:

…16-year-old Ismail described how Daesh threatened to kill him if he refused to convert to Islam and that he was beaten for wearing a cross around his neck. One of the few Christians to remain in Qaraqosh during Daesh’s occupation was elderly Iraqi Christian woman Zarefa who stayed to nurse her dying husband. After his death, the extremists found a crucifix and, at gun point, forced her to spit on a cross.

And then there’s Syria, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Burma, India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Sudan, China, Vietnam, Uzbekistan… Caesar’s sword is brandished over the heads of Christians in more than 150 countries: 80 per cent of all acts of religious discrimination in the world are now against those who follow Jesus Christ.

So please wear red on Red Wednesday 22nd November 2017 to show solidarity with the Church of the Martyrs, for we are united by the ecumenism of blood.

red wednesday

  • dannybhoy

    Excellent!
    From one of my favourite hymns..

    “Sound the battle cry!
    See, the foe is nigh;
    Raise the standard high for the Lord;
    Gird your armor on,
    Stand firm, every one;
    Rest your cause upon His holy Word.
    Chorus:
    Rouse, then, soldiers, rally round the banner,
    Ready, steady, pass the word along;
    Onward, forward, shout aloud, Hosanna!
    Christ is Captain of the mighty throng”

    William F. Sherwin.
    https://hymnary.org/text/sound_the_battle_cry_see_the_foe_is

    Couple that with the remark attributed to the Irish statesman Edmund Burke,
    “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing”
    -and we have no excuse for not using our current freedoms to stand up for all those who are being persecuted; especially our Christian brothers and sisters.
    https://www.opendoorsuk.org/persecution/countries/

    Now all I gotta do is search my wardrobe for something eye catchingly red, and flattering to ‘the fuller figure..’

    • Sarky

      Santa claus suit??

      • dannybhoy

        Hmm…nah!
        Too tight across the midriff..

  • Manfarang

    The right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion is given binding weight in the United Kingdom by s. 1 ss. (1)(a) of the Human Rights Act 1998 (HRA), within which Article 9 (for the right to freedom of religion, etc.) of the ECHR is adopted as a “right and fundamental freedom”. The HRA gives further effect in UK law to the rights for religious freedom afforded by the ECHR, and to make available in UK courts a remedy for breach of those Convention rights without the need to go to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

  • Sarky

    All very well but it’s not actually doing anything is it? Its no different to the multitudes lighting candles after the latest massacre. It might make people feel a bit better, but then they go back to their normal lives. What is needed is action not grand gestures.

    • dannybhoy

      It IS doing something. Christian people give money to charities working in these countries to support Christian communities, we write letters, sign petitions and attend conferences. The problem has been that some Christians believe it’s not nice, not Christian to make a fuss. That has to change.

    • Ray Sunshine

      I’m inclined to agree, but it’s still better to go out wearing a red shirt or scarf on the day than to do nothing at all.

  • Why red? Those who don’t happen to read about this, and I’ve not heard/seen any mention in main news sources, will assume it’s some left wing/Labour propaganda.

  • And then there’s…

    Europe. For now, it is mostly attacks on churches and Christian symbols but full-blooded persecution will be here before long, once Europe’s Muslim population has reached a certain level. Perhaps the churches will then pause to reflect whether it was wise to give their blessing to Muslim immigration, a decision which betrays indigenous Europeans and turns them against Christianity, and which will eventually see the faith virtually disappear from Europe.

    Renaud Camus: ‘More than fear of men, fear of weapons or fear of gods, our civilisation is dying for fear of words.’ European Christianity, dying for fear of being called racist, anti-Semitic and Islamophobic.

    • Anton

      Actually European civilisation dying for fear of being called racist, anti-Semitic and Islamophobic. Persecution will renew the church and how badly it needs it. But Islam is a subject about which I agree with you.

    • dannybhoy

      I didn’t give it my blessing matey! I see no Biblical justification for it and certainly no commonsense logic for it either. In fact I was talking to a European woman yesterday who was horrified at my assertion that most terrorism is sourced within Islam, and that we shouldn’t discriminate against law abiding Muslims.
      Which I hadn’t suggested anyway.
      I simply pointed out to her what the Quran teaches.
      But she remained horrified..

      • @ dannybhoy—The logic behind Muslim immigration, and Third World immigration in general, is far from impenetrable. Joseph Sobran [Sobran’s, April 1997]: ‘Western man towers over the rest of the world in ways so large as to be almost inexpressible…The white man presents an image of superiority even when he isn’t conscious of it. And, superiority excites envy. Destroying white civilization is the inmost desire of the league of designated victims we call minorities.’

        Regrettably for Western Christianity, it has been identified by the League of Designated Victims as one of the cornerstones of white civilization and is, thus, earmarked for demolition. The demolition is being carried out by the League’s own representatives, who occupy positions of power and influence throughout the West, ably assisted by the League’s endless supply of political, media, Christian and pedagogic quislings.

  • Father David

    The Shape of things to come – after the next General Election the House of Commons will be Red not just on the outside but also on the inside too.

    • Manfarang

      With the economy in melt down.

      • Father David

        I’m sure that Mr. Hammond will produce some cunning plan from his red Box of Delights this coming Wednesday? NOT!

        • Manfarang

          More investment from Red China.

          • Father David

            Well, it was an eye-opener to see Trump kow-tow in Peking.

          • Manfarang

            Socialism with Chinese characteristics.
            The first characteristic- workers have to work very hard.

    • Chefofsinners

      Red for the National Debt?

      • Red for the Houses of Parliament the biggest whore house in town.

      • Father David

        Or perhaps the Deficit which is even bigger.

  • len

    ‘Red November,’ one month after celebrations for ‘ Red October’?
    Lenin’s ambition was to destroy religion , sign of things to come /happening already?

  • SonoView

    It will be interesting to see the response of the media to this. I am not a betting man, but if I was I would wager that the BBC news does not give it a mention. We shall see! Meantime I will continue to support Open Doors.

  • John

    Ah, will this now mean that Christian couples looking to adopt children in the UK will now be told that they can in fact do so and that their views are no longer unacceptable?
    And will leaders of political parties who are evangelical Christians no longer be hounded out of office by a shrieking, self-righteous media?
    And will OFSTED now stop closing faith schools that cross them on their interpretation of ‘British values’?
    Thought not…

    • dannybhoy

      No but if Christians get off their fat backsides and start using the freedoms they have, we will see change.
      How on earth do you think our other ethnic groups living here have demanded change???

      • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

        A very good point.

  • IrishNeanderthal
  • Inspector General

    You missed one, Cranmer

    In England. Man seeking to convert from Islam to Christianity hospitalised by Islamic thugs. Authorities seem powerless to protect him…

  • Okay, this is a start at raising public consciousness about the persecution of Christians but what does it represent? In July this year a rainbow flag was projected on to the Palace of Westminster for the first time to celebrate London Pride. Should Parliament now be bathed in red blood to represent the 8 million children murdered in their mother’s wombs in the 50 years since abortion was legally sanctioned in 1967? A Parliament, incidentally, where some are calling for peaceful vigils outside abortion mills to criminalised.

    We now have a population that cannot replace itself because it worships sterile sex and despises children, and also worships youth while killing the youngest members of the human family. We have a generation of children who believe words are violence, a debt hole so big we can’t see sunlight, and a generation so insane and sensitive that they believe saying things like “men can’t get pregnant” is genuinely offensive. The Left is so certain that Progress is progress that they vociferously embrace a generation that is currently trashing thousands of years of human wisdom and knowledge in exchange for a few recent, unproven insanities.

    https://www.lifesitenews.com/

    Parliament should be confronting these challenges and rectifying the harm it has been doing. Our elected representatives have been systematically destroying the Christian foundations of our nation over the past 50 years.

    • Anton

      Should Parliament now be bathed in red blood to represent the 8 million children murdered in their mother’s wombs in the 50 years since abortion was legally sanctioned in 1967?

      Best idea I’ve read for a long time (supposing you mean a red light) and what if a brave MP were to propose it?

      • What if the Catholic and Anglican Cathedrals all did it regardless of Parliament?

    • chiaramonti

      “Some think that we are quickly progressing towards perfection, while others imagine that virtue is disappearing from the earth.” – Anthony Trollop in Barchester Chronicles. I think the others have it!

  • ardenjm

    Aid to the Church in Need has been doing brave, essential work first for Christians during the Soviet persecution and now for Christians under Islamic persecution.

    Buy your Christmas cards from them.
    It makes a difference…

  • not a machine

    A challenging post from your grace and the powers of highlighting current matters. Religious persecution is a tragic outcome usually given strength by those who don’t perceive or haven’t thought through the possibility of God’s existence. This post perhaps outlines religious persecution from different religions and it perhaps makes some sort attempt to consider where a unifying belief for peace is located. I must admit I am tempted by the binding nature of the question and my deep belief in my lord Jesus Christ, to train the knights way, but for most theologians, this is limited thinking and we die being unable to choose which faith is the truth and the secular version wins by default. So most people will be comfortable in the middle ground of the question that may arise,giving a clash of secular and zealot, which as Christmas is approaching is a non centric argument that weakens our Christian faith. So not sure if I can welcome it. I don’t know if I can, answer any implied question without forming something fierce to take it on. I think the beginning of where the derivatives we see as anti Christ, have come from, because there is a belief behind those, and that belief is one of pure brain cognition which is sometimes labelled as super intelligence. I make the case that Christian wisdom and super intelligence are separate things that only unify in Christ. Religious persecution could be rather stupid in God’s view noting that we all(in any of the monotheistic faiths) have to meet God. I hope to have a good attempt after Christmas to start on the origins of modern anti Christ promotion, but I know that Christ can do all things and who knows what Christ may shine Into any lives in his workings?

  • Chefofsinners

    Highly appropriate, since the laws passed by Parliament are the cause of most of the persecution suffered by Christians in the UK.
    Oh, we have not yet had to shed our blood, only suffer economically, been barred from various careers, forced to write anti-Christian messages on cakes and so-forth. But there is no doubt that our ‘rights’ sit below those of every other group in society. Shine the light on this by all means, for the darkness hates the light.

  • carl jacobs

    The problem of course is that “Red” Wednesday will quickly give way to “What was all that red about?” Thursday. These little displays of global solidarity mean nothing, achieve nothing. They are intended to communicate a display of public virtue devoid of obligation. Do you want to help Christians in Eritrea? Send the Army. Alternatively, you could accept refugees. Neither is a viable solution. The army can’t fix a foreign culture and there are vastly more refugees than capacity to help. So what then? Let’s shine red lights on a building. It’s not nothing at least.

    The world is filled with evil because it is filled with people. More often than not, there is no justice and never will be justice for the things they do. We are utterly helpless to do anything about almost everything that happens in the world. Western men turn to the secular religion of Human Rights for succor but it is daily shown to be an image of wood that cannot speak or act. Even so they cut themselves and plead before the idol but response is ever received.

    In the face of such despair – for despair is the natural lot of man – we must trust and wait on God to deliver what only He can deliver. He watches. He remembers. He has acted and He will act. So we pray that He will fulfill his Word. The Secularist mocks prayer as impotent. And yet he doesn’t comprehend the true.impotence that envelopes his very being. He doesn’t understand even though he bares witness to it with every breathe of his life.

    The world is not the Eschaton. It is a slaughterhouse of bloodshed and sin and rebellion and death. But it will not always be so. Eventually, men will be called forth from the dust to give account for what they have done. They will not stay hidden forever. And on that day the blood of the martyrs will be remembered with something more than red lights cast of a building.

    • dannybhoy

      “In the face of such despair – for despair is the natural lot of man – we must trust and wait on God to deliver what only He can deliver. He watches. He remembers.”
      Indeed He does, but He didn’t give that option to the Israelites and most Christians have had no problem fighting in defence of their nation.
      Take a look at how the Christian communities have been decimated in Africa and Middle East.
      They didn’t fight back, they are disappearing. God hasn’t stepped in. Neither did He with the Holocaust and millions were subsequently murdered. Would that have carried on if the Allies hadn’t started winning back Europe?
      You betcha.
      We may not want to stand up for ourselves, but when the alternative is death and slavery…
      http://www.thelatinlibrary.com/imperialism/notes/tours.html
      http://www.san.beck.org/8-2-EasternEurope.html

    • Chefofsinners

      I’ve just spent £125 on a red tie at Hermes… have I slightly missed the point?

      • carl jacobs

        Is it a nice tie or simply overpriced?

        • Anton

          Both?

      • Herpes is costly.

  • magnolia

    Great that this is happening. It is a good start, and if we complained, rightly, when Westminster Abbey flew the Saudi flag we should salute this more sensible action. Both are not a lot more than symbolic, but this one is a good symbol, with a service attached, and the prayers of the saints are most important.

  • Dreadnaught

    I won’t be at all surprised if and when the explanation for the lighting is made intelligible to the public at large, its watered down to infer that it is those of ALL religions, not just Christianity that is being highlighted.
    Useless virtue signalling at best is this little jape. The usual suspects will hijack the event as theirs by right; they being of course, the world’s premier victims of religious persecution.

    • dannybhoy

      Well it is Dreadders. They made that clear, and we can’t get around that. I have been following the situation with Christian Pakistani Asia Bibi, separated from her husband and children for years now, in prison awaiting to see if she will be executed..
      The there’s the Chennai Six; six British ex servicemen in prison on inproven charges courtesy of the Indian government flexing their economic and military muscles against their former rulers/
      I’ve written letters and emails to government officials and mps
      …..Nothing.
      They seem afraid to make a big fuss to get them released – or they don’t really care, or both.
      The thing is though that too many Brits of goodwill and Christians justr can’t be bothered to stir themselves and we have too few leader types willing to organise noisy/lively protests putside the HofP or Downing Street…

      • Dreadnaught

        I don’t know enough about Brits in foreign jails to get into campaigning Dan. My local MP is Ben Wallace and when I have issues I write to him and to his credit there is always a reply. Have you tried your MP?

      • Rhoda

        Believers in persecution remind us that persecution in the Bible is normal. Persecution is often a direct by-product of faith.
        A prayer for believers in persecution would ask that Jesus would be made known, that believers would remain obedient through their suffering, and that we identify with believers in persecution by sharing our faith in whatever environment we find ourselves.Believers in persecution could avoid their suffering if they would only leave Jesus alone and leave witness alone.

        There are reports from many countries where believers are persecuted of growing numbers coming to faith, even in North Korea where an estimated 50,000 Christians are imprisoned.
        The church in North Korea is not only surviving, but growing – and they have great hope for the future. One Christian has shared: “One day the borders will open and we will unite with the South Korean and the Chinese church to bring the gospel to some of the darkest places on this earth.” (Open Doors)

        • dannybhoy

          Normal in countries which are antagonistic to Christianity, but that hasn’t been the case in Western Europe and the USA for many years.
          Our cultures are largely based on Christian values, this country and the US sent out missionaries across the world, and evangelistic Christians helped to improve the lot of the working man, education, hospitals etc.
          The real problem is that we forgot about the crusading work led by Christians , we got complacent and began to believe that we are an integral part of the establishment..

          • Anton

            Not antagonistic to Christianity? The Lollards suffered mortal persecution and were the Bible-based Christians in England in the 15th and 16th centuries. Institutional protestantism is only a little better, for John Wesley was an ordained Anglican minister yet pulpits were regularly denied to him, he had to preach the gospel in the fields, he was often run out of town, spat at and faced barrages of stones.

            The real gospel has always been counter-cultural.

          • dannybhoy

            I said ‘for many years’ Anton,
            Not ‘never’.
            Corrections like this detract from the main thrust of the post.
            Now if you don’t agree with the last sentence fine, you can explain why.
            My point is that Christians as a whole have not been living the Gospel in recent years.
            And before you say it, yes I know there are honourable exceptions…

          • Anton

            I’m not detracting, but arguing implicitly that the Lollards and the Wesleyans *were* the church movement in Britain in their time. Jesus is clear that one may consider oneself a believer yet be rejected by him on the day of judgement. We complain about nominal Christians today who go to church but don’t walk the walk, and I believe it was just the same in many preceding centuries.

          • dannybhoy

            Okay, but we’re not talking about ‘who wasn’t walking the walk’. but the Christians who were, and who made things happen in society.
            My concern is that we Christians are coming under increasing pressure through Islam and militant homosexuality but around me very few Christians are acknowledging it let alone addressing the issues. It’s still ‘bury your head in the sand’ time, and frankly if we continue to not use our freedoms to fight these attacks, we will only have ourselves to blame.

    • Royinsouthwest

      Perhaps I am being cynical but I would not be surprised if the Guardian and BBC used it as an excuse to highlight Islamophobia and “hate crimes” by right wingers in Britain and other Western countries.

      • Dreadnaught

        Sounds par for the course.

  • Norman Yardy

    I am afraid that I don’t trust these politicians that do these things for effect and to appease their own consciences and make themselves feel good.
    I agree with other commentators that this is better than nothing but not good enough. We need a revival in this country through individual Christians talking to others and sharing the gospel. When there are once again more Christians in the land then we might see some change. When unbelieving MP’s lose their seat to a believer, that is when we might see some change a Government level.

  • Lucius

    “Christians are now the most persecuted people on earth”

    Perhaps, because for a state or group to proclaim itself as a “defender of the faith” is bound to invite a withering assault by anti-Western, anti-Christian “social justice” warriors. A defenseless flock because all the sheepdogs were shamed away has become ripe prey for the wolves.

    • Inspector General

      Also persecuted is Aled Jones, who must now face the shame of being heterosexual by an accuser whom one presumes could have blocked his account at any time…

      Ladies. This is how the human race continues. You dress attractively to impress (and don’t deny that you do) and a fellow shows interest. That’s how it is done. You either accept the attention or you politely decline.

      • Royinsouthwest

        Women often deny dressing to impress men and claim that they do it to please themselves or to impress other women with their dress sense. I wonder how many women today, and men for that matter, have read the book “the Naked Ape” by Desmond Morris and are familiar with his theory about why women wear lipstick?

        • Inspector General

          Yes, Roy. One has heard women dress primarily to get one over on other women regarding dress sense.

          Perhaps Aled Jones might consider a counter charge of harassment. The Inspector would, one suspects…

          • Ray Sunshine

            Yes, that’s their main priority, I agree.

          • Inspector General

            It’s no defence, and their hounding of men who see and smell the bait needs addressing…perhaps T May can say something, although she does seem to be involved in assuring Militant Buggery they have her full support…

          • How about arranged marriages and the niqab and sunglasses for women? That should solve the problem for weak willed men. Alternatively, men could just keep their eyes facing frontward and their zippers shut.

          • Cressida de Nova

            You forgot the chastity belts Jack:)

          • For men?

          • Cressida de Nova

            Grrrrrr !

          • Anton

            In living memory no factory girl in the north of England would be out without a shawl on her head, a garment identical to the hijab.

          • One fears men are just not up to all this sexual liberation and the freedom women now have to leave their homes and factories and dress and behave as they choose. They even go out unescorted on Fridays and Saturdays, wearing make-up to drink, and cavort in short skirts.

          • Anton

            The men or the women? Your wording is ambiguous…

          • Cressida de Nova

            It all depends on their IQ

          • Women compete consciously or sub consciously with each other to attract the opposite sex. Wearing lipstick is a sexual signal to the male.

          • Cressida de Nova

            Not true… Healthy males are attracted to females regardless of lipstick, make-up, clothes or whatever. It is a natural state of things. We are programmed to be attracted to each other. In the human realm the males are often too arrogant and egocentric to make an effort to win a female’s interest so a lot will probably suffer rejection by the females. Some of them then seek consolation from each other in unnatural ways and others blame women for all the wrongs of the world from here on end instead of taking responsibility for their own actions.

          • Ray Sunshine

            others blame women for all the wrongs of the world

            You mean the Garden of Eden and all that?

          • IrishNeanderthal

            Please see my reply to Cressida de Nova above.

          • Royinsouthwest

            Actually men are usually expected to make an effort. Women often think that just being female is enough, and in the case of those fortunate enough to be born beautiful it often is.

          • dannybhoy

            But physical beauty is not enough to build a meaningful relationship/ ,marriage on.

          • IrishNeanderthal

            Seeing this, and the reply of Ray Sunshine below, reminded me of Chapter 3 in Genesis. Reading from verse 8 onwards in English, whil simutaneously listening in Hebrew, I get the feeling that Adam gets a heavier does of blame than Eve. (I don’t know what to make of the serpent at this poimt.)

            But nevertheless, Eve’s punishment seems much more burdensome than that of Adam. The phrase ‘and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee’ sprang to mind when reading an article by a prison doctor following the Soham murders, remarking how often among his clientène a woman was so overwhelmingly subjugated by a monster of a man. So many manifestations of male dominance should remind us that this is a curse.

          • Martin

            We should remember:

            and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor. (I Timothy 2:14 [ESV])

            Adam deliberately chose to side with his wife against God.

        • Ray Sunshine

          I read The Naked Ape and I remember being very impressed by it, but that was forty years ago and I don’’t recall the bit about lipstick. Could I trouble you to refresh my memory?

          • Royinsouthwest

            The subject matter is a bit indelicate and as there are ladies such as Mrs Proudie, Marie 1797, Crssida etc. present I will simply give a link to an article which contains a brief explanation of Desmond Morris’s view of lipstick.

            The Power Of Lipstick
            http://findyourpleasure.com/the-power-of-lipstick/

          • dannybhoy

            Impregnate me now!!

          • Dominic Stockford

            And as soon as they left they slapped the war-paint back on – after all, that’s what women call it….

          • Ray Sunshine

            Thank you, Roy. I had no recollection of that explanation at all. It sounds a bit far-fetched, I think.

            And I agree, BTW, that it’s wise to keep that sort of thing under wraps. If anyone should be so inconsiderate as draw it to Mrs Proudie’s attention, for miles around Barchester the hills would be alive with the sound of the agitated rustling of bombazine.

      • Chefofsinners

        We’re Stalking in the Air…

      • Father David

        So, is your solution Burkas for all?

  • layreader

    Now I think I understand what ‘virtue signalling’ is. Far easier to organise a few red floodlights than to actually do (or even say) something about it. Or even express your solidarity with those persecuted. When two Coptic churches were blown up on Palm Sunday this year, there was the usual tut-tutting about the appalling loss of life, but did anyone highlight the reasons for the attack and condemn the persecution of people because they are Christians.
    Officially, religion in the UK seems to have reached the status of a minority sport. What about Joshua Sutcliffe – are red lights being put out for him?

  • It’s all very well popping on a red jumper and flicking on a switch, but what is actually going to be done about Christian persecution? What new laws are going to be proposed and passed? What perpetrators are going to be arrested? Are Christians going to take to the streets in protest? Will the BBC be televising the Services?

    • Manfarang

      Will the UK be granting any political asylum?
      I do know some persecuted Pakistani Christians who have fled to Thailand. They are unable to get permission to stay or work in Thailand. They are required either to go to a third country or return to Pakistan.
      Don’t forget the Karen Christian refugees on the Thailand Burma border.

      • We can’t take in the world’s persecuted Christians.
        The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Pope, and other Christian leaders need to engage in talks with Thailand and Burma about them taking in Pakistani Christians, I’m sure Aung San Suu Kyi would welcome Christians. Or what about them going to the Philippines? Duterte is a Catholic.

        • Manfarang

          Britain certainly can some of them along with other countries.

        • Dodgy Geezer

          From a cultural point of view, we would be FAR better off taking in the world’s persecuted Christians than taking in Muslim economic migrants…

    • Royinsouthwest

      I remember seeing some statistics on the Internet about refugees from Syria and Iraq admitted to Britain and the United States Iraq a few years ago when the civil wars in those countries were at their height. As Christians formed about 10% of the population of those countries then you would expect them to form about 10% of the refugees, assuming they were not specifically targeted. Of course they were specifically targeted by ISIS and therefore you would have expected that more than 10% of Syrian and Iraqi refugees given asylum to be Christian. In fact the proportion of Christians given asylum in both Great Britain and the United States was a small fraction of what would have been expected.

      If I remember correctly (and I hope I am not doing him an injustice) Obama swept away criticisms of the US policy saying that it would be discriminatory to give priority to adherents of a particular religion even though the existing policy had that result.

      • Dodgy Geezer

        … Of course they were specifically targeted by ISIS and therefore you would have expected that more than 10% of Syrian and Iraqi refugees given asylum to be Christian. In fact the proportion of Christians given asylum in both Great Britain and the United States was a small fraction of what would have been expected….

        I’m guessing that being ‘specifically targeted’ by ISIS does not mean that you remain alive to become a refugee…?

        • Royinsouthwest

          ‘m guessing that being ‘specifically targeted’ by ISIS does not mean that you remain alive to become a refugee…?

          Why do you respond to a serious point with a Smart Alec reply? People who know that they and their co-religionists are being targeted by a murderous cult do not hang around to see what happens. What is so difficult to understand about that?

      • Anton

        Of the religious background of Syrian asylum seekers recommended by the UNHCR for resettlement in the UK in 2015, out of 2,637 refugees there were only 43 Christians. In 2016 the statistics were even worse: out of 7,499 refugees there were only 27 Christians. As you say, roughly 10% of the population were Christian.

        To get these figures out of the Home Office took a Christian charity 8 months although they are legally obliged to give them in response to a Freedom of Information request within 28 days:

        https://barnabasfund.org/news/UK-government-discriminates-against-Christian-refugees-from-Syria

        Meanwhile the Trump administration is disgusted that the billion dollars it gave to the UN to help refugees is not getting there and it will work directly with charities henceforth, according to VP Mike Pence:

        https://barnabasfund.org/news/US-Vice-President-Mike-Pence-says-UN-has-failed-to-help-Christians-and-other-victims-of-genocide-in-the-Middle-East

        Another plus mark for the Donald.

        • Royinsouthwest

          The first link you gave contains the following passage.

          Disturbingly, UK officials tried to prevent the release of this information. Barnabas Fund submitted a freedom of Information request to the UK Home Office in February. And in spite of being legally required to release it within 28 days, officials failed to do so and repeatedly stalled or simply did not answer correspondence. Eventually, Barnabas Fund lodged a formal complaint with the Information Commissioner’s office. On 19 September the Information Commissioner issued a formal notice requiring the Home Office to release this information within 35 calendar days or face contempt of court proceedings. Even then, the information was only released at the very last minute after Barnabas Fund had contacted the immigration minister’s office, alerting him to the situation and asking him personally to ensure civil servants complied with the order.

          The minister responsible should have done far more than simply tell the civil servants to comply with the law. Disciplinary action should have been taken against them for their attempt to ignore the law. However I bet that the civil servants have not suffered any consequences and when they retire they will probably still get KGBs, OBEs and other honours.

    • dannybhoy

      Maybe it’s a diversionary tactic away from our other problems, or they’re testing the waters to see what kind of response or backing they get?
      Look, the thing is that if (in this instance Christians) do their usual head in the sand thing, and Muslims get involved with enthusiasm, who do you think the government will take seriously?
      If we Christians keep on being gentle and inoffensive, then frankly we deserve everything coming our way…

  • andrew

    I’ll never support the promulgation of Islam in non Islamic nations. Whether that means I am to be labeled as an islamaphob, bigot, fascist or persecutor is totally irrelevant, and of no concern to me.

    • Manfarang

      Islam is not a monolith. It has divisions and sects. What about the Ahmadis?

      • Anton

        What about them?

        The Quran is the core of it.

        • Manfarang

          According to some the Qadiani (Ahmadiyya) leadership has tampered with authentic meaning and interpretation of the Holy Quran, as related to them by Prophet Muhammad. The Ahmadi are alleged to have promoted an incorrect translation of the Holy Quran written to support the blasphemous claims (in the eyes of other Muslims) of Mirza Ghulam Qadiani, the founder of the Qadiani (Ahmadiyya) Movement.

          • Anton

            If they can’t produce an alternative text which has significant rather than minor differences then so what?

          • Manfarang

            A Muslim and a Christian have made a new translation of the Quran to underline the similarities between their two religions.
            The authors, who are also friends, said they hoped the text would provide “a tool of reconciliation” between Christians and Muslims.
            Some 3,000 parallels between the Bible and Quran are demonstrated in the book, which has a split-page format.

          • Anton

            But there can be no agreement on whether Jesus of Nazareth is divine or whether he died on the Cross for sins.

            What counts relationally when people believing in incompatible scriptures meet is how their respective scriptures instruct them to behave towards others.

          • Manfarang

            “15 you must certainly put to the sword all who live in that town. You must destroy it completely, both its people and its livestock.”

          • Anton

            Christians are not under the Law of Moses.

          • Manfarang

            Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.

          • Anton

            “Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit” – Ephesians 6:17.

          • Manfarang

            Onward, Christian soldiers!

          • The Snail

            Marching AS TO war – not marching to war. – a simile
            ….. one in hope and doctrine one in charity (i,e compassion)

            “LIKE a mighty army moves the Chruch of God” – not an army – this is a simile –
            hence like “Brothers we are treading where the Saints” ( holy people) “have trod” .

            Your understanding of the English Language and conventios appears to be somewhat limited. to me.

            I hope this helps

          • Manfarang

            My response was to the context of Anton’s quote of scripture however if you want examples of war there is the Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon, also known as the Order of Solomon’s Temple, the Knights Templar or simply as Templars which was a military fighting force.
            Later there were the Wars of Religion in France.
            Today there is the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) in central Africa.

          • The Snail

            Ther have always been people in any religion who do not follow the precepts of their founders. Just as their are many footballers and supporters who do not follow the rules of football. All of us are sinful – that is our common equality. The Bible is quite clear about that – and there are numerous examples in any religion which support the sinfulness of humanity. They are examples of what we should try to avoid..

          • Manfarang

            So is Christianity no better a religion than other religions?

          • The Snail

            No we should judge the game of football by the precepts of the FA (football association) not how spectators and players sometimes behave.

            Just as we should compare religions by the precepts, lives and actions of their founders. The adherants may not live up to the example of the founders.

            The basic tenet of Christianity is that no one is perfect. “all have sinned”.

            Our imperfection stems from some of the following reasons:

            1. We do not know enough – we are not all knowing (Not Omniscient)
            2. We are not powerful enough – we are not All mighty.
            3. We are morally flawed – we are not Holy

            i.e. we are not God.

            The Christian message is that by faith in Christ i.e. trusting Him and what he did on the Cross, we can be reckoned perfect by God.

          • Manfarang

            “The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do”

          • The Snail

            True because the Son is part of the Trinity? So what is your point?

          • Manfarang

            Jesus is not God.

          • The Snail

            Well if that is so you will have to explain away the teaching of the Church for 2000 years and a large part of the New Testament.

            Just take one passage.

            First a bit of background. In the Hebrew Bible the name of God is designated by the 4 letters YHWH (Probably pronounced YaHWeH). We do not know the pronunciation because no Hebrew would pronounce the divine name. To stress, that the name should never be said, when the vowels were edited into the text they used the vowels of Adonai – make a nonsense word. The word Adonai would be said instead of YaHWeH – whenever the text was read in the synagogue or in any other context. The word Adonai means My Lord.

            In Johns Gospel when the apostle Thomas meets the risen Jesus(having doubted the resurrection) – what does he say My Lord and My God. For a Jew (John) to have said that it is perfectly clear what he meant.

            However if you are a Muslim, as I suspect, you won’t even believe Jesus died,

          • Manfarang

            6 But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him.

          • The Snail

            The trouble is that if you cut up some text into small enough pieces you can make it say anything. In the old detective novels a ransom note was comprised of lots of letters and words cut from a newspaper or such like and pasted together. Of course the original text never said what was in the ransom note.

            Many people like yourself do the same.

          • Manfarang

            Yes the context is important. The Bible as a whole says there is only one God.

          • The Snail

            The Bible also says that God is Love. Love is a reification of Loving i.e. Love implies the act of loving. The question you must answer is what or who God loved before anything was created? Did He just become Love when He had made something/someone? That is one reason Christianity proposes the concept of the Trinity.

            Please tell me why you do not agree with this – or is it that you do not agree God is Love.? Please don’t go off in another direction.

            BTW The word Elohim used ih Hebrew Bible for God is plural. Also God says when he creates

            Gen 1:26
            Then God said, ‘Let US make humankind in OUR image, according to our likeness;’

            Notice the US and OUR- How is God US i.e. Plural

          • Manfarang

            Plural, to indicate the all-inclusiveness of God’s attributes of authority and power, the plurality of majesty. It is customary for one in authority to speak of himself as if he were a plurality.
            The subsequent verse, which relates the creation of man to a singular God, “And God created man in His image” ((Genesis 1:27)).

          • The Snail

            None of the kings of Israel used the Royal ‘we’ – Just the British used the royal ‘we’ as by Queen Victoria “WE are not amused”

          • The Snail

            Genesis 1:27

            The word for God there is אֱלֹהִים
            (‘ĕlôhı̂ym el-o-heem’}

            gods in the ordinary sense; but specifically used (in the plural thus, especially with the article) of the supreme God.who is thus plural.
            ;

          • The Snail

            Whole verse says

            1 Corinthians 8:6New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised (NRSVA)

            6 yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.

            We exist through God the Father AND through Jesus Christ – same words for both, They are equivalent in this verse!!!

          • Anton

            You mentioned Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army.

            Tell me, Manfarang, do you believe that anybody who says he is a Christian is a Christian? Or do you look at the biblical criteria?

            Tell me, Manfarang, do you believe that anybody who says he is a Muslim is a Muslim? Or do you look at the quranic criteria?

            Tell me…

          • Manfarang

            If someone says he or she is a Christian then maybe he or she is. Whether they are a good Christian is another question. I remember a theology student in my student days who was always going on about religion. Another student once said, “She’s no Christian”. We could see the hardness of the theology student’s heart.

          • Anton

            I might say that I am a member of the Athenaeum Club, but saying so doesn’t make me one, does it? (I’m not, as it happens.) It is whether you meet the entry criteria that counts, not what I say. Same with the church and the umma.

          • Manfarang

            If someone says they are a member of the Athenaeum and they are not then that person has made a false statement.

          • Dominic Stockford

            Incorrect translation – not ‘send’ but ‘bring’. Jesus was well aware of the bloody reaction that there would be to Christianity. Nowhere does he order Christians to attack others, in fact he constantly does the opposite.

            As for your foolish attempt to misuse the Old Testament earlier in this thread – it is a specific command given to specific people in a a single and specific instance – not a generic command to murder, as is given to Muslims by the Koran.

          • Manfarang

            Jesus was a Jew. Christianity came about years after his death.
            Jesus was aware of the bloody reaction to Roman rule which also came about after his death-the Jewish Revolt.

          • The Snail

            Is it not a record of what the people of the time thought that God wanted them to do? which must be assessed in the light of what Jesus did and taught?

            After all, in the book of Joshua, Aachen kept booty from a battle which he was not supposed to do. He and ALL of his were bur.ned with fire. So the children were killed for the sins of the father. But by Ezekiel 18 every person is said to be responsible for their own sins – not fathers for their sons or vice versa. The theology of the Bible develops over a period of about 1500 years. It is evolutionary. It culminates in the teachings of Jesus, as Christians believe.

            It is admitted that the Bible says the sins of the fathers are visited upon their children. However that does not mean that the children are guilty because their fathers sinned, but rather the effect of the wrongdoing affects the future generation/s – who could deny that. It is not the guilt that is transmitted it the effects that are.

          • Dominic Stockford

            If you only think that it is a record of what people ‘thought’ God wanted them to do then you clearly do not regard it as the inerrant Word of God. The text is clear, there is no doubt at all, it ‘is’ the Word of God, and the commands are the ‘specific’ commands from God to His people.

          • The Snail

            But Jesus contradicted the Hebrew Bible by his words and by his actions.
            e.g. He said anumber of times ‘You have heard it said in Old Times …. but I say to you. He also contradicted the Hebrew Bible by his actions e.g. Woman caught in adultery, saying that the dietary laws were not of value etc. He was the culmination of the Hebrew Bible in his Life and teaching.

            In the parables of Jesus he includes not only good but also bad characters e,g, In the good samaritan – The samaritan (good) The priest and Levite (bad). Those we should emulate and those whose actions we should try to avoid. But we are asked to make up our own minds on this by reference to his teaching.

            Why not in the Hebrew Bible a same mixture of the good and bad – even amongst those who claimed they were doing God’s will?

            That is not to say that the Ancients in the Hebrew Bible did not have a very real sense of the prescence and will of God but they did not know as much about Him as jesus taught. After all it is possible to have a very much greater realisation of the practical effects of the sun than I have – without knowing anything about the nuclear fusion processes going on within the sun, of which I have some knowledge.

          • Sir John Oldcastle

            Nowhere does Jesus contradict the OldTestament. Nowhere. In the Sermon on the Mount he proclaims what the OT teaches, and then expands on it. Nothing he says contradicts it in any way. In fact he is clear to state that He FULFILS the Old Testament.

          • The Snail

            I thought that the word ‘contradiction’ might be a red rag to a number of fundamentalist bulls.

            Take for instance the command:

            Leviticus 19:18 New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised (NRSVA)

            18 You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against any of your people, but you shall love your neighbour as yourself: I am the Lord.

            This command is to ‘your people’ i.e. the Hebrews – later in the same Chapter it is extended to the ‘foreigner’ who lives in the Land of the Hebrews. This also confirms that the command was only limited to the Hebrews since it is extended to the foreigner living in the Land later.

            It was a relevant question for the Lawyer to ask Jesus ‘who is my neighbour?’ This provoked the story of the Good Samaritan in which Jesus suggests that even those who you might regard as heretics i.e. Samaritans are your neighbour.

            This is an extension of the principle – but it is also a contradiction of the Hebrew Bible in that the command is extended far beyond the limits of what was believed in the original text.

            Unless one was to say, that Christians should only love Christians i.e. your own people.

          • Barleymary

            Just happened to read yesterday – word ‘sword’ here is translated as ‘machete’ or instrument used to cleanly divide things, rather than weapon

          • Pubcrawler
          • Manfarang

            There are a number of legends about the origins of the Jews of Habban. The most prominent is that they descend from Judean soldiers who were stationed in southern Arabia by King Herod of Jerusalem during the Second Temple Period. Herod dispatched a unit of Jews in the region to assist the Romans with fighting wars in the area. Unlike the Jews of northern Yemen the Habbani Jews wore: Jambiyya (curved knife), Matznaph (turban) and Avne`t (sash).

          • Manfarang

            The kukri or khukuri (Nepali: खुकुरी khukuri) is a Nepalese knife with an inwardly curved blade, similar to a machete, used as both a tool and as a weapon in Nepal.It is a characteristic weapon of the Nepalese Army, the Royal Gurkha Rifles of the British Army, the Assam Rifles, the Assam Regiment, and the Garhwal Rifles.

          • The Snail

            Yes and how does Jesus go no to explain that?

            Matthew 10:

            “34 ‘Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.
            35 For I have come to set a man against his father,
            and a daughter against her mother,
            and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;
            36 and one’s foes will be members of one’s own household.
            37 Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; 38 and whoever does not take up the cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Those who find their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it.”

            Jesus is speaking about the fact that his message will divide familes .

            This is only too true when a Muslim, for example converts to Chrisitanity, the Muslims will take out a sword and try to kill the convert. The punishment for Apostasy in Islam is death. This is true of all the schools of Islamic jurisprudence. i.e the Hanafi, Maliki, Shafii and Hanbali.
            They only differ in how long a time ( if any)they will give an apostate to recant the apostasy, before they kill them.

          • Manfarang

            In 1992, a local imam asked Iqbal to be sentenced to death for converting to Christianity. The Pakistani judge hearing the case rejected the idea, saying that Iqbal could only be sentenced if it could be proven he had committed blasphemy.
            In 2016, Pakistan’s Sindh province passed legislation to protect religious freedom by banning forced conversions of people, Sindh has a large Hindu minority compared to other Pakistani provinces.

          • The Snail

            The governor of the Punjab was killed by his own bodyguard for supporting the idea of repealing the pakistani blasphemy laws. The minister of minorities a mr Bhatti a Christian was also muredered for the same stance.

            Asis Bibi, a christian, has been sentenced to death for the crime of drinking from the same cup as some Muslim women. They then accused her of blasphemy, because she is alleged to have said, that jesus would have had a rehter differnt opinion. The death sentence is being appealed but no judge seems willing to try the case – so she languishes in prison.

          • Manfarang

            And murder is punishable by law.

          • The Snail

            Like :

            “Infidels are those who say Allah(God) is the Messiah the son of Mary” (5:17)

            “When you come upon infidels, smite their necks” (47:4) i.e decapitate them.

            “We disown you and what you worship besides Allah.We renounce you. Enmity and hate shall forever reign between us. Until you believe in Allah alone” (60:4)

            Fight those who believe not in God nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by God and His Apostle,
            nor acknowledge the religion of Truth(Islam), (even if they are) of the People of the Book (Jews & Christians), until they pay the Jizya(Protection money/tax) with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued. ( 9:29)

    • dannybhoy

      I think we should label you ‘islamophob’
      Has a certain quirkiness about it..

  • Dodgy Geezer

    …Red Wednesday is set aside as the day we shine a light on all those who are persecuted for their religious belief…So please wear red on Red Wednesday 22nd November 2017 to show solidarity with the Church of the Martyrs,…

    I’m glad that we’re doing so much to suppress racial and religious slaughter in Africa and the Middle East. This will surely show ISIS and Boko Haram that we mean business. So much more effective than spending the money on maintaining the Navy and Air Force….

  • IrishNeanderthal

    People have started mentioning “phobias”. Here is an important article:

    In 2008 the UK was saved from a new blasphemy law

    I have read that the blasphemy laws in Pakistan, and similar ones in Malaysia, are based laws introduced by the British to “keep the natives quiet” before independence.

    Now our rulers seem to be wanting to apply the same reason to the natives here.

    Regarding the concepts of Islamophobia and homophobia (although the two are like chemicals which one should not mix) it seems to me that the same attitude may lie behind the grossly delayed investigation of the Rochdale abuses, and the girl who was recently given up for adoption by a gay couple and murdered two weeks later.

    • The Snail

      Sorry what you are told is not true. Pakistan was supposed to be a ‘secular’ state as far Jinnah was concerned. Pakistan’s laws became particularly severe between 1980 and 1986, when a number of clauses were added to the laws by the military government of General Zia-ul Haq, to “Islamicise” the laws and deny the Muslim character of the Ahmadi minority. Prior to 1986, only 14 cases pertaining to blasphemy were reported. – this has escalated since then with over 1300 cases..
      It had nothing to do with British Rule.

      Please see: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blasphemy_law_in_Pakistan

      • IrishNeanderthal

        What are Pakistan’s blasphemy laws? – BBC News

        The offences relating to religion were first codified by India’s British rulers in 1860, and were expanded in 1927. Pakistan inherited these laws when it came into existence after the partition of India in 1947.

        Between 1980 and 1986, a number of clauses were added to the laws by the military government of General Zia-ul Haq. He wanted to “Islamicise” them and also legally to separate the Ahmadi community, declared non-Muslim in 1973, from the main body of Pakistan’s overwhelmingly Muslim population.

  • len

    Rather strange that Christianity a religion which advocates love, peace, and reconciliation has been the most persecuted religion on this Planet and still is .
    Christians have been burned, tortured, crucified , beheaded and ostracized.This is still happening in parts of the world, probably more now than in past centuries.

    • dannybhoy

      That’s mainly because Christians don’t bite back, and all the time the West was the prevailing economic and military power we Christians had the luxury to agonise over what part we would play in the various conflicts.
      I don’t know for sure, but I rather think previous generations of believers did not see a dichotomy between seeking to Iive the Christian life and being prepared to fight to defend what they believed to be right..
      As I said earlier the Christian Church is disappearing in the Middle East because the West has become weak and unable/unwilling to defend Christian communities.

      • Rhoda

        The traditional Christian denominations may be dwindling but there has been quite a turning of Muslims to Christ, especially among Iranians.

        • dannybhoy

          Yes and that’s wonderful, but the fact that so many Christians are being attacked and their churches, businesses and homes destroyed is still great cause for concern.
          And don’t forget that these things are condoned in Islam.

    • Rhoda

      Is it really? Shouldn’t persecution be expected?
      “Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution. But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived.” 2 Tim 3:12-13.

      • len

        It was a rhetorical question, many Christians are aware of the spiritual battle they are in, but I suspect the secular world is oblivious to this matter?.

  • saintmark

    I suspect that this will be taken over to promote and highlight Islamaphobia and once again the Christians will be forgotten.

  • Dominic Stockford

    And? Most people won’t have a clue what its about and simply say, ‘ooh look, isn’t it pretty…’. Still its better than the perversion of rainbow lighting.

  • betteroffoutofit

    And will Bessie Braddock’s ghost appear and do a fan dance for us?

    Or are we so red that it’s no longer a revolution?

  • Murti Bing

    Did this ever actually happen? I see no reports of it anywhere.

  • prompteetsincere

    Beam up that red light North of the Border – Christ’s flock and His bairns are amang them.

  • The Snail

    The Dean of our local Cathedral was unaware of the event which floodlit many churches and Cathedrals with red lights – and didn’t seem to want to do the same.