Sri Lanka: Christianity under attack on Easter
Bottom Line: It’s likely that Easter Sunday began for you with the news of more than 200 people being and killed and more than 500 injured in a series of terrorist attacks at churches and hotels in Sri Lanka. Aside from the sadness and the appropriate condemnation from leaders around the world, you might have noticed a bit of a contrast to the coverage of this horrible event relative to what recently played out in New Zealand.
Following the horrific attack on Mosques killing 50 in New Zealand – there was extensive world-wide coverage, quick calls for gun control in New Zealand and input sought from religious leaders around the world. The outrage was appropriate. My question is why we haven’t been as outraged and demanding of reforms when it’s Christians under attack? In the wake of the fire at Notre Dame Cathedral, I brought you the information that in France alone we’d had over 1,000 attacks on churches and Christian monuments across the country – a stunning average of nearly 3 per day. Yet, where was the coverage and outrage? In the wake of the Notre Dame fire ISIS called on all of its followers to attack churches around the world. On Wednesday a man was arrested at New York’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York with lighter fluid and tools to carry out arson. It was little more than a footnote in the news. Here’s some information that you should know in the context of this conversation...
According to World Watch International there are approximately 200 million Christians at risk of religious persecution world-wide right now. In Sri Lanka, for example, Christians are only 10% of the population. But clearly, anyone anywhere in the world could be a potential target/victim. To that end here’s the most alarming information to consider. Speaking specifically of Christians since 2001. The lowest annual number of Christians killed due to their religious affiliation in a year has been 8,000. The highest has been 100,000. To put it another way, we average 22 to 274 Christians being murdered per day world-wide for their religion. It’s just that you rarely hear about it. Just as has been the case of the churches and monuments that are being targeted at alarming rates.
The world is quick to denounce and condemn any targeted violence against those who practice Islam, which again is appropriate, but often remain deadly silent when Christians are the targets – which is far more pervasive. Once again, the most pervasive form of bias in news media remains omitting information.