More than 100,000 Christians killed in 2012,for their Faith,according to Italian Scholar Massimo Introvigne
1.The following article is my translation of an article in the Catholic blog “Le Salon Beige”.That article is a French translation of an Italian article written by Vittorio Messori.
2.It must be said that 70% of all those persecuted in the world are Christians.Christians are the most discriminated in the world and that is done specifically because of our faith.
3.The worst persecution of Christians under the Roman empire was by Emperor Diocletian and lasted from 303-313.
It lasted 10 years and I repeat 10 years with 3,000 killed.But today it is more than 100,000 killed each year.Then Christians were 5-10% of the population of the empire,that is to say 3-6 million out of a total of 60 million.
4.Diocletian had also orderd the complete destruction of all copies of the New Testament and many copies were destroyed.That is one of the reasons we have few NT copies from the 2nd and 3rd centuries.
5.Most of the persecutors today are Muslims,and after them the Communists(China,North Korea) and some influential Hindus who are fanatical.
Here is the French translation of the Italian original
Here is the original Italian article:
If you want you can translate the original using Google Translate
Here is my translation:
There were reactions of incredulity,if not of rejection,when in 2011,sociologist Massimo Introvigne said, in an international conference organized in Budapest by the European Community,that on average,each year,more than 100,000 Christians of all confessions were killed in the world for their faith.Introvigne spoke as the Italian representative of OSCE,the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe,and also as one of the most influential of experts,as founder and director of CESNUR(Centre d’études sur les nouvelles religions/Center of Studies on New Religions) and author of many scientific studies.
To those who contested it Introvigne responded with his usual university conscientiousness,showing irrefutable sources.And if the figures were wrong they were rather by understatement.Prudently the intellectual from Turin had in fact diminished the number of victims,which is higher,according to certain studies.At the end of his refutation of those who rejected his figures,he said:
“There is a lesson in itself in those reactions of rejection:the problems of persecuted Christians are so underestimated that when the figures,when they are cited with exactness and in all their horror,seem unbelievable to many Europeans and Americans.”
A few days ago,on the occasion of the day of St.Stephen,”protomartyr”,that is to say the first Christian martyr,stoned by the Jews of Jerusalem for having announced the resurrection of Jesus,Introvigne has reiterated,using the microphone of Radio Vatican,the figures for the ending year:
“105,000 dead,1 killed every 5 minutes.According to the most reliable studies 10% of 2 billion Christians,therefore 200 million persons,mostly in Africa and Asia,suffer because of their religion.”
(My Note:here is the Italian article,where Introvigne is interviewed by Radio Vatican,from which the citation has been taken:
(End of note)
Having said that,Introvigne,who is now in charge of the Observance of Religious Freedom for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,continued saying:”The persecution of Christians is today of the first urgency in the world regarding violence and religious discrimination.There is no other faith that is so combated even to trying to do a massive genocide of its members.”
In Europe and in the US believers are still reproached,specially Catholics,about a long-time ago past of an Inquisition,intolerance,crusades,censorship (besides the anti-historical character of some of these allegations).It is hard to believe that today simply believing in the Gospel can be a risk that is too often deadly.And today the Pope is practically the only one who denounces the lack of religious freedom,defending not only Christians but the believers of all other faiths.
“This freedom”,recently repeated again by Benedict XVI,following the example of his predecessor,”concerns not only every Christian,but is for every man,it is a right recognized as a natural right,whatever his own religious point of view.”
The Pope has reminded that many countries,specially Muslim ones,defend themselves against those accusations by saying that they recognize religious freedom.But there is no religious freedom,Benedict XVI has replied,when Christians are only authorized to celebrate their liturgy in closed churches(in Saudi Arabaia even that is prohibited) and when they are strictly forbidden to express their faith publicly.There is no freedom when the fact of displaying a cross on the roof of a church or to hang it from your neck means you will be assaulted,and even arrested.There is evidently no freedom when it even comes to the death sentence for those who choose baptism,it being contrary to the state religion.
Three are today the “environments” of greatest persecution
There is what is left of Communism (or what is assumed to be Communism) in China,where the only activism that is scarcely tolerated is that of the “patriotic” church,that is to say the church controlled by the system,which even nominates the bishops.There is North Korea which,according to witnesses,”is probably the place where it is the most dangerous to be a Christian”,there is Cuba where dying Castrism alternates moments of tolerance with those of intolerance.
After that there are the ethnic nationalisms,and the “racial” traditions which give way to periodic episodes of persecution fury by those who,accodring to Western “pink legend”,are the champions of tolerance and welcoming others:the Buddhists and the Hindus.
And finally there is a the Islamic ocean around the tropics,where the rare zones of relative traquility and approximate equality for Christians have been erased by the resurgence of an extremism which has (often with the help of Europe and the US:just look at the Middle East and North Africa) swept away the cultures and governments that were trying to put in place a more peaceful and open reading of the Koran.
Another bloody persecution zone has to be added:that of Black Africa,where the state authorities are often ephemeral and powerless,and submerged by constant clashes between tribes and ethnic groups.And where the persecution of Christians is one the favorite hobbies of rebel groups,thieves and of fanatical disciples of witch-doctors.
Solutions?It is very difficult,even impossible,to propose any,considering the extent,depth and diversity of that which incites hatred of and the killing of those who believe in the Gospel/Evangel.It is necessary all the same to point out that for more than two centuries Christians are only and always on the side of those persecuted,never on the side of persecutors.
It must be said,with appropriate humility but at the same time with truthfulness,that such a tragedy is a sign of spiritual nobility.Nobody who oppresses or kills will ever find such an order or appouval in the Gospel.