‘Save The Persecuted Christians’ Coalition Raises Awareness at CPAC and NRB Events
WASHINGTON—At two key events attended by thousands of American Christians, the newly formed Save the Persecuted Christians (STPC) Coalition, (www.SaveThePersecutedChristians.org) is spreading the message about its mission to protect Christians and their communities globally.
At a time when, according to Open Doors USA, “nearly one of every 12 Christians in the world lives in an area, or in a culture, in which Christianity is illegal, forbidden or punished,” and as reports surface that ISIS is earning revenue by harvesting the organs of Christians in the Middle East, the STPC Coalition has come together to raise the awareness of the American people and their elected representatives about the plight of persecuted Christians worldwide, to create an irresistible transpartisan political force to support them, and to hold accountable those engaged in such persecution.
Last week at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) near Washington, D.C., Coalition leaders participated in a panel addressing Christian persecution. Panelists included Dr. Jerry Johnson, president and CEO of National Religious Broadcasters; Father Andre Mahanna, a Maronite Catholic priest and president of the Apostolic Union of Clergy in the U.S.; Faith McDonnell, with the Institute on Religion and Democracy; and Suzanne Scholte, president of the Defense Forum Foundation and a leader of the North Korea Freedom Coalition. Watch the panel discussion here.
Breitbart News covered the panel and reported that years of persecution has left the Middle East’s once-thriving Christian population at risk of extinction due to what the U.S. government has determined is “genocide” being waged against followers of Jesus Christ.
Dr. Johnson, who moderated the panel, said, “We’re going to reach less than 3 percent Christian population in the Middle East in less than 10 years down from 13 percent about 100 years ago,” according to Breitbart.
Father Mahanna added, “It is important to show the connection between the Christian persecution going on in the world and why we, in America, must care about it here at home. If we don’t care or don’t fight against the persecution and genocide of Christians and other minorities in the world abroad, how are we going to be prepared to fight to protect our own freedom here, in the United States of America?”
This week at the National Religious Broadcasters Convention in Nashville, STPC Coalition representatives are also in attendance to raise awareness about the Save the Persecuted Christians Coalition, to invite radio broadcasters nationwide to educate their listeners about the plight of persecuted Christians, and to appeal to America’s leaders to support the work of the Coalition and its partners.
Coalition members are sharing information about the world’s nations most egregiously engaged in persecuting Christians, which, according to the 2018 World Watch List from Open Doors USA, include: North Korea, Afghanistan, Somalia, Sudan and Pakistan. The list annually ranks the worst 50 countries where the persecution of Christians takes place.
Such persecution currently occurs so routinely that it rarely makes headlines. For example, according to Open Doors, 255 Christians are killed worldwide every month. 104 Christians are abducted. 180 Christian women are raped, sexually assaulted or forced into marriage. 160 Christians are detained or imprisoned without trial. And 66 churches are attacked. Every month.
The goal of the STPC Coalition is to greatly reduce—and to deter—the further, global persecution of Christians. The Coalition officially launched its efforts earlier this month on Ash Wednesday with a mission to protect Christians worldwide who are suffering discrimination, torture, rape, slavery, banishment and murder—simply because they believe in Jesus Christ.
Beyond calling attention to the oppression of Christians worldwide, the immediate task is to disseminate actionable information about ways in which the American people can help those being persecuted. One of the ways Americans can help is by encouraging their worship leaders to visit the STPC Coalition’s website at www.SaveThePersecutedChristians.org, where free kits may be ordered that include an outdoor banner which can be displayed in front of their place of worship. This simple banner features the Arabic “nun” character, which has become an international symbol for the oppression of Christians ever since the Islamic State used this first letter of the Arabic word for “Nazarene” to designate homes of followers of Christ targeted for persecution.
During the CPAC panel discussion, Dr. Johnson reminded attendees to “remember the old questions,” he said, referring to and paraphrasing a famous quote by the late Rabbi Hillel: “If not this, what? If not now, when? If not you, who?”
“This is a human rights issue,” Johnson added. “It’s not just a religious issue. And to put up the banner, to wear the nun symbol, to show up, to speak up; that’s what we are asking people to do.”