More than 200 abducted Assyrian Christians taken hostage by ISIS in February 2015 were saved by a Syrian priest who managed to raise their ransom money, reports RIA-Novosti.
Simultaneous militant attacks in thirty-five Christian settlements on February 23, 2015 resulted in the abduction of 226 people, one of the largest in the history of the Syrian and Iraqi conflicts.
At least once a year, Christians are reminded of Jesus’ prayer for his disciples that “they may be one so that the world may believe” (see John 17.21). Hearts are touched and Christians come together to pray for their unity. Congregations and parishes all over the world exchange preachers or arrange special ecumenical celebrations and prayer services. The event that touches off this special experience is the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.
Father Emanuel Youkhana rues that, for the third Christmas in a row, the church bells will not ring in Mosul.
He recounts that, around June 2014, the numerical religious minorities such as Yazidis and Christians around Iraq’s second biggest city began to face a horrific onslaught by the group calling itself IS (Islamic State), or Daesh in Arabic.
On December 9, a commemoration prayer service was held on the occasion of the International Day of Commemoration and Dignity of the Victims of the Crime of Genocide and of the Prevention of this Crime. In September 2015, the United Nations General Assembly established 9 December as the International Day as the 9th of December is the anniversary of the adoption of the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (the “Genocide Convention”).
Christian churches in India are experiencing an unprecedented influx of parishioners, reports Christian Today. This phenomenon is all the more surprising as it is taking place against the background of the rising persecution of Christians in the country.