Report highlights ‘extreme’ suffering of Christians worldwide

Report highlights ‘extreme’ suffering of Christians worldwide Staff at The Irish Catholic wore red this week to coincide with Aid to the Church in Need's Red Wednesday campaign which highlights the suffering and persecution of Christians around the world. From left to right: Mahak Verma, Ninna Jacobsen, Alexis McSparren, Maria Gomez, Michael Kelly (Managing Editor), Keilah Blohm, Chai Brady and Alba Esteban.

There is still relentless persecution of Christians who suffer across the world due to violence and intolerance, with South and East Asia becoming ‘hotspots’, a new report has found.

Aid to the Church in Need’s ‘Persecuted and Forgotten’, An International report on Christians persecuted and martyred for their Faith 2017-2019’, found that some Christian communities in the Middle East may never recover.

“The impact of this genocide – continuing migration, security crises, extreme poverty and slow recovery – means that it may now be too late for some Middle East Christian communities to recover. In some towns and cities, the countdown to Christianity’s disappearance is ticking ever louder,” it states.

Worsening hotspots for Christian persecution were identified particularly in South and East Asia, particularly India, where a radical pro-Hindu government are in power, China and Myanmar.

Speaking at a launch of the report in University Church in Dublin, Dr John Newton of ACN highlighted severe cases of violence against Christians around the world, some of which are largely overlooked by international media.

In one case he focused on Myanmar saying: “We are well aware of the genocidal campaign against the Rohingya Muslims. However, less well-known is the campaign being waged on the Christian-majority Kachin people in the North of the country. Kachin people have been killed, raped, tortured, and used to ‘clear’ landmine peppered areas. Women and girls have been trafficked as brides to China.”

He said that 3,000 Kachin villages have been burnt and 200 churches destroyed since 2011.