Persecution
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 Treatment of Christians has taken a turn for the worse

Nepal UnsplashNepal (MNN) — For the past several years, the Gospel has moved more in Nepal than almost any country in the world. Christians were showing the nation that the Gospel was more than just a political agenda. But Joe Handley of Asian Access says that recently, things have taken a turn for the worse. Thanks to the Church’s work with orphan care through orphanages and human trafficking through rescue centers and job-training facilities, Nepal...

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Christians are coming together in support of one another

nepal, church, cementary, pixabayNepal (MNN) – There have been significant changes in Nepal’s recent history which have introduced uncertainty for the nation’s future. In 2015, the nation declared itself a secular state through a new constitution. It seemed that religious freedom was growing in Nepal. However, earlier this year Nepal also adopted a new law, criminalizing religious conversion. The law is about to go into effect in August. And another big change just took place last...

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Anti-conversion laws create pressure on Christian ministries in India

India (MNN) – What if sharing the Gospel could land you in jail? This is the reality many Indian Christians face now that another state has enacted an anti-conversion law. Why Anti-Conversion Laws? Indian anti-conversion laws are put in place through local state governments. These laws have been part of public discourse since the colonial period, when they were seen as a way to protect national and religious identity in the face of British imperialism. Over the years, these laws continued to serve different purposes, but now they are coming back into popularity.

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persecuted pastor imageRecently during our national directors meeting in Thailand, one of Asian Access directors said the following: “It is very difficult to run our programs in our country because of political pressure and persecution. It's a miracle that I'm alive today given these dynamics!" Increasingly we serve a world where this type of situation is reality. When I began with Asian Access over nine years ago, several of the countries we serve were facing pressure and persecution; but today it seems that at least half of the countries we work in are under some form of duress if not outright persecution...

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Nepal photo courtesy of Mission Network NewsConversion may not be safe anymore in Nepal

Nepal (MNN) – Christianity in Nepal has two main bullies—Hindu radicals from within the country, and India. Thanks to growing pressures from these two sources, religious freedoms for minority groups are severely threatened. Earlier this month, a bill was passed that will likely restrict Christians and other groups from sharing their faith. It is currently being finalized into law. The language of the bill closely resembles blasphemy and anti-conversion laws from...

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tree with roots“He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.” – Jer. 17:8

I was like a tree without roots and on the verge of burning out. Life and ministry felt like a desert until Pastor Richard Brohier shared with us about having deep roots. I thank God for...

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(Representative photo courtesy of Asian Access)New law ramping up pressure on churches

Southeast Asia (MNN) — In many communities, the local church exists to serve people and be a beacon of Christ’s love. But not everyone sees it that way. In many countries, the government sees the body of believers as a threat to their way of life. That’s what one pastor who’s been trained by Asian Access says is happening in a country in Southeast Asia. In one case, a congregation meeting in a pastor’s house raised enough money for a church building, only to have it shut down by authorities. “Right after they...

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Christian minority feels safe under martial law

map & flag image, courtesy Voice of the MartyrsPhilippines (MNN) — The Filipino military declared a brief ceasefire Sunday, allowing Muslims to peacefully celebrate the end of Ramadan. The lull in the fighting also allowed for the rescue of six civilians trapped in the city of Marawi. Government forces are forging progress toward peace, but it’s slow-going. Earlier last week, about 200 suspected members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) took hostages and holed up for hours inside a school, then took five civilians with them after fleeing. Some say the attack could be a diversion for the Islamic State to gain more ground in Marawi. “That is a common perception because the BIFF is sympathetic to the radical group,” says Herman Moldez with Asian Access, an organization that trains and equips Christian leaders throughout Asia. “In fact, there had been some effort for reinforcement coming from Salou and these areas, and so one of the reasons for the declaration of martial [law] of the entire [island of] Mindanao is for the military to be able to respond quickly and not to complicate the whole matter in Marawi City...

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Persecuted ChurchIndian Christians face increasing persecution in recent years

India (MNN) — India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently announced he will be meeting with United States President Donald Trump later this month to discuss bilateral relations. While that doesn’t necessarily include religious freedom, it will hopefully shed some light on the uptick in pressure on Christians. According to Open Doors USA, radical Hinduism is the main source of persecution in India, and Christian converts are often physically assaulted if they don’t return to their old beliefs. Joe Handley with Asian Access confirms reports that the situation of Christians has worsened in recent years. “Churches are feeling pressured out of their places that they weren’t pressured before,” Handley says. “They pretty much have freedom in certain sectors or areas of the city, but now you’re finding pressure put on them by the business owners, that maybe they rent a facility and are [experiencing] skyrocketing...

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