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All articles in category International

October 2017
News > International

International – Sierra Leone mudslides

Mothers’ Union in Sierra Leone has responded to the needs of those affected by the mudslides that hit the country’s capital, Freetown, in August 2017. According to news reports, scores of people were killed and about 600 people reported missing, with thousands of people left destitute and at risk. Victoria Wilson, Mothers’ Union’s diocesan president of Freetown, said: ‘We are providing food items, clothing, toiletries and water for those hospitalised. We need prayers for the victims, and the various people working day and night to excavate the mud and search for dead bodies’. Nicola Lawrence, head of development and policy for Mothers’ Union, commented, ‘This...

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October 2017
News > International

International – Spring Harvest partners Mercy Ships

Christian charity Mercy Ships has been chosen as the official charity partner for Spring Harvest 2018 and 2019. This marks the first time that Spring Harvest has partnered with Mercy Ships, an international charity that operates the world’s largest non-governmental hospital ship. Peter Martin, group chief executive at Essential Christian, which runs Spring Harvest, said: ‘We have been impressed at the way Mercy Ships is channelling the skills and talents of ordinary Christians into front-line service, and always in partnership with the local church. This fits closely with our own vision for the transformation of lives and communities’. Lea Milligan, executive director at Mercy Ships...

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October 2017
News > International

International – Huge storms

In Asia and the Americas there have been catastrophic storms, sea surges and flooding during August and September. India, Bangladesh and Nepal have seen possibly their worst ever monsoon flooding, with entire towns swept away and more than 1200 people losing their lives. Reaching as far as Mumbai, the rains forced millions of people out of their homes, shutting down infrastructure and hampering relief. In the West, Hurricane Harvey left Texas, Louisiana and Florida with more than 100,000 homes damaged and 47 people reported dead. And category 5 storm Irma devastated whole island communities in the Caribbean, with, at the time of writing, nearly 50...

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October 2017
News > International

International – Nepal to clamp down on Christians

Nepal has passed an ‘anti-conversion’ bill in its parliament which could make Christian witnessing illegal in the country. The bill criminalises ‘the hurting of religious sentiment’. According to Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW), a religious freedom charity, the move is ‘deeply concerning’. Anyone from Nepal caught committing an offence faces up to five years in prison and a £600 fine. CSW believes the bill’s wording is similar to controversial blasphemy laws in Pakistan, where people can be given the death penalty for insulting another’s religion. ‘Decades of misuse of the blasphemy laws have resulted in a situation where even voicing disagreement with these laws can lead...

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September 2017
News > International

International: India – Reaching the untouchables

Nearly 30 years ago, Operation Mobilisation (OM), which had been in India since 1964, started to reach out to the lowest caste of Indian society, the Dalit-Bahujan people, or ‘untouchables’. Joseph D’Souza, moderator bishop of the Good Shepherd Church of India, said: ‘The cry of the Dalits and other poor, marginalised people of India is for freedom. ‘This earnest plea is an appeal for massive social, moral and spiritual change. It is a call to rid their world of the oppression of caste ideology. It is a demand for simple human dignity, in response to the current realities of modern slavery, the oppression of women,...

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September 2017
News > International

International – Yazidi victims

Hundreds of Yazidi women and girls, rescued or freed when IS was pushed out of Mosul in Iraq, are struggling to recover after three years of sexual abuse. A hard-hitting report from the New York Times says that systematic sexual abuse has left many girls unable to move, with many falling into a deep, trance-like sleep for days on end. Since the operation to take back Mosul began last year, around 180 women, girls and children from the Yazidi ethnic minority, who were captured in 2014 by IS, have been liberated, according to Iraq’s Bureau for the Rescue of Abductees. After three years, many women...

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September 2017
News > International

International: Supporting Syrian widows

Syrian Christian widows are in desperate need of help, especially those remaining in the war-torn country. Many Syrian men, including Christians, were kidnapped by the so-called Islamic State in 2013; their wives were sent footage of their beheadings when they refused to convert. Other Christian men were killed over the last six years of war, many of whom were specifically martyred for their faith. According to Barnabas Fund, although some of these widows have resettled in other countries, at least 96 Christian widows, many under the age of 30, remain in Aleppo. Between them the widows have about 200 children, and Barnabas Fund is supporting...

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July 2017
News > International

International – Australian Christians targeted

Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) has spoken out after being targeted by LGBT extremists during one of its events. The group was holding an event at a Melbourne hotel, during which some of the speakers would be discussing transsexualism and Australia’s ‘Safe Schools’ programme. Lyle Shelton, managing director of ACL, described the forceful obstruction of the public as ‘the latest example of intolerant bullying by rainbow political activists. ‘The ACL has no problem with peaceful protest. We live in a democracy and we too support freedom of speech and freedom of expression. But physical force and intimidation should never be part of protest in a civil...

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