France Offers Asylum to Mosul’s Christians
While the situation for Christians in Mosul, Iraq is taking a turn for the worse, senior ministers of the French Government have issued a public statement offering asylum to Iraqi Christians being driven out of their homes by ISIS. Many Christians have fled their hometown of Mosul after the militant ISIS group seized the city and told them to convert to Islam, pay a tax or face death.
According to the UN, just 20 families from the ancient Christian minority now remain in the city, which ISIS has taken as the capital of its Islamic state. Please continue to offer prayers regularly for our brethren in Iraq, who have only God to look upto in their hour of crisis. Click here to read more.
Perseverance Leads House-Churches Growth in China
Perseverance form the churches during persecution has ensured a rapid growth in the house-churches in China. A pastor and a church planter said that the faithfulness of believers during persecution has touched many government officials. While persecution is still prevalent in many parts of China, some provinces have a “little more breathing room,” said another house church pastor. Click here to read more on this incredible growth story.
Gaza Christians Look for Refuge Amidst Israel-Palestinian Conflict
Members of the small Christian community caught between the Israel-Gaza border are seeking refuge from bomb shelters as the Hamas-ruled Gaza strip has already experienced at least 1,000 Israeli air strikes intended for Palestinian rockets and rocket launchers. According to a report, more than 350 Palestinian rockets have hit areas where Christians live. Approximately 1000 Christians live in Gaza in a predominantly Muslim area. Click here to read more on this. Incidentally, reports indicate that some Muslim citizens are taking shelter in Christian churches. These refugees who have lost their homes believe that a Christian church will not be targeted by the Israeli shelling.
Hollywood’s Ridley Scott to Make Another Bible-Based Film on King David
Ridley Scott’s Exodus which stars Christian Bale will hit the theatres only in December, but talks are on between 20th Century Fox, Chernin Entertainment and him to make another Old Testament based movie on King David.
While many movies and series have been made on the David-Goliath incident, Scott’s movie is likely to focus on David’s life after he became the king of Israel.
It seems the Bible continues to catch the imagination of Hollywood, after two successful Bible-related films this year, Noah, which grossed $359m worldwide, and Heaven is For Real. Click here to read more.
Temple in Brazil Appeals to a Surge in Evangelicals: NY Times
A rendition of Solomon’s Temple built in Brazil by the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God, is nourishing an evangelical Christian empire, according to this report by The New York Times. The temple occupies an entire block and can seat 10,000 people. The replica of Solomon’s Temple, which took four years to build at a cost of about $300 million, captures the surging growth of evangelical faiths in Brazil and is incidentally twice as tall as Christ the Redeemer, adds the report.
Follow Up: US Will Continue to Call For Release of Saeed Abedini, says US Secretary of State
US Secretary of State, John Kerry stated that the US will continue to call for the release of the imprisoned Iranian origin Pastor Saeed Abedini. The US State Department’s 2013 Report on International Religious Freedom was released late last month, and Pastor Saeed was mentioned in the document several times. The report highlighted cases of injustice across the globe, but Secretary of State John Kerry placed special emphasis on Abedini during his presentation. From the site Christian Today.
Editorial Note: Apologies for publishing the News Digest so late. I was caught up with some personal emergencies back home. Do continue to pray for our brethren in Iraq, as also for the Israel-Palestinian conflict over Gaza to ease out.
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