I wish just once we might hear as much passion from the Obama administration about the plight of Christians suffering in the Middle East as we do affluent, educated, politically connected, and media savy GLBT folks in the USA. . .
From the Christian Telegraph:
Saudi Arabia declares destruction of all churches in region
Earlier this month news reports surfaced out of Saudi Arabia that raised the red flag for Christians, reports MNN.
Todd Nettleton, a spokesman for the Voice of the Martyrs USA, says,
“The Grand Mufti of Saudi
Arabia–the top Islamic official in the country
of Saudi Arabia–has declared that it is “necessary to destroy all the
churches of the region.’” Nettleton goes on to note that the report
hasn’t surfaced anywhere except on the Council on Foreign Relations Web
site, which was then picked up by The Atlantic.
Ranked second on the Open Doors World Watch List (a compilation of
the 50 countries where persecution of Christians is the most severe),
the news is not really a surprise. There is no provision for religious
freedom in the constitution of this Islamic kingdom.
All citizens must adhere to Islam, and conversion to another religion
is punishable by death. Public Christian worship is forbidden;
worshipers risk imprisonment, lashing, deportation, and torture.
Evangelizing Muslims and distributing non-Islamic materials is illegal.
Muslims who convert to Christianity risk honor killings and foreign
Christian workers have been exposed to abuse from employers.
Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah, the Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia,
created an implication with his assertion. Nettleton explains, “This was
in a meeting with Kuwaiti officials who came to Saudi Arabia. They were
asking this Islamic official ‘What should we do about the churches?’
His statement was, ‘There should be no Christian churches on the Arabian
According to the report, the delegation wanted to confirm Sharia’s
position on churches. Essentially, Nettleton says, “If you have churches
in Kuwait, which they do, they should be destroyed. The interesting
thing about this is that there are no churches in Saudi Arabia. There
are no church buildings that are allowed to exist there. So he clearly
wasn’t talking only for his own country: he was trying to export this
ideology to the surrounding countries.”