Pakistan’s new cardinal says government unable to stop religious extremism

Newly-appointed Pakistani Cardinal Joseph Coutts during a courtesy visit of relatives following the ceremony for the creation of new cardinals at St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican on 28 June. (Photo: TIZIANA FABI/AFP/Getty Images)
Pakistan’s first cardinal in nearly a quarter of a century says his country’s government is unable to control Islamic extremism. “Our government is not strong enough to control the kind of extremism that has developed in the country,” Joseph Coutts, Archbishop of Karachi since 2012, said, adding: “It is enough to accuse . . . Read More

Pakistan: Christians told they can’t have a church in Muslim-majority village

Pakistan: Christians told they can’t have a church in Muslim-majority village
Christians in a village in Pakistan’s Punjab province have been told to remove every visible sign of Christianity from their church, six months after being forced to sign a form pledging they would no longer hold services. The 40 Christian families in Nayya Sarabah (Chak 336) village, part of Toba . . . Read More

Pakistan: Islamic university opens Christian chapel – a first

Religious minorities in Pakistan have to declare their religion when applying for identification papers or for government jobs making them "even more vulnerable" activists say. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
For the first time ever, an Islamic university in Pakistan has opened a Christian chapel. The church of St. Mary is located in the atrium of the Agriculture University of Faisalabad, Pakistan’s third-most populous city, and was built following an initiative of the city’s former vicar general, reports AsiaNews. The church contributed . . . Read More

Pakistan Christian still on death row, five years after his ‘blasphemy’ sparked Joseph Colony attack

Pakistan Christian still on death row, five years after his ‘blasphemy’ sparked Joseph Colony attack
At the fifth anniversary of the arson attack on a Christian neighbourhood in the Pakistani city of Lahore, the mother of the Christian man convicted of blaspheming against Islam – and so provoking the attack – says she still prays for his release. Sawan Masih*, a 30-year-old sanitation worker, was accused . . . Read More

Pakistan: Christian family attacked for helping build church wall

Pakistan: Christian family attacked for helping build church wall
Five members of a Christian family in northeast Pakistan were attacked and injured as they helped to build a boundary wall around their church on Sunday, 4 March. The pastor of the Pakistan Gospel Assemblies church in Yousufwala village, on the outskirts of the Punjabi city of Sahiwal, told World . . . Read More

Adding insult to injury – Pakistani church leaders arrested, fined for ‘not putting security in place’

Bishop of Multan Leo Paul with a security inspection team outside Multan Cathedral, late Dec 2017
Pakistan intelligence agencies on Tuesday (19 December) put out an alert that major parks could be targeted by suicide bombers over Christmas in Lahore, capital of Punjab province – where the largest population of Christians resides. On Sunday (17 December), two suicide bombers attacked Bethel Memorial Methodist Church in the . . . Read More

Six years on, justice thwarted in case of Pakistan’s murdered Shahbaz Bhatti

The memorial to Shahbaz Bhatti, which marks the location of his assassination. Islamabad, Pakistan.
Six years on, justice for the murdered Pakistani Christian federal cabinet member Shahbaz Bhatti remains elusive, as does the social equality for which he gave his life. The Christian community says the Pakistani political leadership is not doing enough to ask the police and the judiciary to ensure his killers . . . Read More

Pakistan: Christian boy, 16, arrested for Kaaba ‘blasphemy’

Pakistan: Christian boy, 16, arrested for Kaaba ‘blasphemy’
Nabeel Masih, 16, is alleged to have “defamed” the Kaaba in Mecca, the building at the centre of Islam’s most sacred mosque.Amalia Sari / Flickr / CC   A 16-year-old Christian boy has been accused of committing blasphemy by “liking” and sharing a post on Facebook which “defamed and disrespected” . . . Read More