Christian Persecution in the News- When and Where It Happens

Writer Author  Stephen A. McDonald
Christian Article : Current Events  - Fiction  No

Christian Author Writer News of the persecuted church is so important because it brings us to a benchmark of the trials and tribulations that were so regularly endured by the early church. Well those trials are still happening today, and their news often brings the most church jaded pew warmer to a moment of reflection as they
realize, if briefly, that the freedom enjoyed in America is a ubiquitous perk. Many Christians rhetorically state that the secular media never covers the persecuted church around the world. The facts show that even the most church unfriendly news outlets feature stories about persecuted Christians- just not when you're expecting it.

The headline read as it jumped from the monitor, "Religious violence erupts in Moluccas". Incidentally I found this piece about ongoing Christian-Muslim violence on the BBC's page. If you haven't already, bookmark their page as they have the best coverage of religious persecution in the secular media. If you
want to be encouraged in your faith, we suggest that you spend a few minutes browsing the news, even the secular news, before you go to church on Sunday.

As I was browsing the news this past Sunday morning I was reminded of a point another Christian news editor made a few months ago- that all of the news about persecution of Christians takes place on Sunday, when most Christians are away, at least temporarily from the screen or the keyboard. As the planet spins on its axis, right now is already yesterday where the persecuted church lives and worships. When the news of yesterday reaches us now, we aren't here, most Christians are at church. By the time that the Christians get back to the television, usually for the sitcoms that rule most American household schedules, the news has been swept away by issues that are going to be the stories for the week. Stories about Christians getting burned at the stake are gone as fast as they came. The secular media benefits in two ways, first they actually covered the story, and second, they get to keep mainline Christians (who are
easily appeased) at bay by being able to provide some statistical bones to the few watchdog groups who sniff for such things.

As pastors enter the pulpit and ask for more money to complete the parking lot or choir box expansion, the larger issue screams that as the Christian faith grows around the world- paired with increased persecution, the American church and the luxurious benefits that come with it are clearly not supporting the church's global needs. It is a moot point to state that we Christians worship in a complete freedom here in America. Even the isolated incidents of harassment, usually directed towards a pastor who has the courage to speak out against the sin of homosexuality, are but mere jokes compared to the persecution that is happening around the world.

We as Christians can easily get lost in the promiscuous lifestyles, both spiritually and physically, of the American dream that the world we're called to be separate from has reached us where it counts- in our spiritual lives and so us distanced from the Gospels that we have lost our point of reference from which to judge our (lack of) progress. Not getting what you need to hear on Sunday? Get encouraged by those risking their lives spreading and living the red letters of the Good News under the oppression of Islam, dictators, and poverty. In an era when growing ranks of Christians find themselves increasingly unsatisfied with the events transpiring in their local churches, a refreshing reminder of the blessings bestowed upon America may be just a mouse click away. You won't find it on the 6:30 news, but you will find it if you know when, and where to look.

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