Tag Archives: persecution

Sanitized Soap Box Loses its Cleaning Power: Another Freedom-of-Speech Loss Story

sword eater

Buskerfest 2013 was underway tonight in Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Virtually any kind of street performer you could think of was represented, and people roamed the free event at will, dropping a dollar in an artist’s tip jar if they were pleased, walking on by if they were not. The audience was quite diverse, and seemed to represent a good cross section of age and ethnicity in our city. The occasional spurts of light rain kept it cool if damp; overall, people looked amused. Our granddaughter was enthralled.

But my husband and I were disappointed.

You see, it was a sadly sanitized event.  Not that it was squeaky clean…there were provocatively-clad belly dancers. There was plenty of goth dress, with abundant piercings and tattoos–among the performers and the audience members.  

But there were no Christian performers that I could see or hear. Also no Jewish or Muslim ones. Faith and religion apparently had no place at the festival.
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Monday Morning Sermon: Persecution and Civil Disobedience

In the midst of our pastor’s sermon yesterday morning, entitled “The Normal Christian Life Includes Persecution,” he made a statement that I had to check out.  I found this at The National Catholic Reporter (you’ll have to scroll down quite a bit to read all of this part of that article.  Here’s the salient statistic):

Aid to the Church in Need, a German-based Catholic aid agency, produces a widely trusted annual report on global threats to religious freedom. It estimates that somewhere between 75 percent and 85 percent of all acts of religious persecution are directed against Christians. In a report to the European Parliament last month, the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life said that while Muslims and Jews face significant persecution, “Christians faced some sort of harassment in two-thirds of all countries,” or 133 states.

Most of the persecution, according to a map of restricted countries at Voice of the Martyrs, is taking place in Asia, the Middle East and Africa.  Which implies that we enjoy much more religious freedom here in North America.

But is this a good thing?

And will we recognize persecution when it comes?  And how will we respond?

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