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Saturday 31 October 2009

New Appeal to support Iranian Christians

Urgent action: Speak out for two Iranian women in prison for their faith

Maryam Rostampour and Marzieh Amirizadeh Esmaeilabad have been in prison since March this year because of their faith. They are both believers from a Muslim background who now find themselves in the notorious Evin prison in Tehran, under severe pressure to deny their Christian faith.They have gone through interrogations, solitary confinement and sleep deprivation, and continue to struggle with their health, receiving inadequate medical attention.They face charges of 'propagation of the Christian faith' and 'apostasy', for which they could face life imprisonment.

It need take only two minutes of your time. Seize the opportunity to use your freedom to help those who are being persecuted for their faith.Thank you... please pray for the swift release of Maryam and Marzieh and that God will protect, strengthen and sustain them in prison.

Alice J

Advocacy Officer

Open Doors UK & Ireland

Friday 30 October 2009

Korian Attack missed the radar...?

Here in the UK Pakistani Christians have really only focused on the act of persecution to Christians in Gojra on the 1st of September. Yet a larger scale act of aggression form hardline Muslims occurred on the 31st of July at Korian - in which over 500 Christians were made homeless and in excess of 100 houses and 3 churches were razed to the ground. Moreover cattle and other items were stolen from the beleagured and destitute community.

The two incidents were seperate and although the first incident did not induce any deaths I am rather surprised that our British Pakistani Community has not highlighted both incidents as discrete and equally despicable?

I am hoping someone reading this blog will provide a comment as it is flabbergasting that in our focus we have manged to merge the two incidents into one. In the same way the very unprofessional media in Pakistan with its varying facts and figures has done.

It is rather disappointing that we have managed to marginalise the impact of the attacks in Korian, much due to the deaths and the more recent nature of the Gojra attack. Both these cases need to be used in future campaigns as it evidences the immensity of the terror our people in Pakistan face on a daily basis.

Please do share your thoughts, perhaps the image below will help stir some emotion....

Wednesday 28 October 2009

Arabic Conversion to Christianity!

I received this email from brother Asif Mall (sic):

Dear Friends,

Very recently a Muslim man accepted Jesus on Aramiac Bible Channel. Even though it is in Arabic and without subtitles, but from his sobbing and tears one can still tell the profund nature of his experience accepting Jesus as his Lord & Saviour.

Some of you didn't receive this the testimony of sister Amina who in his effort to convert Christians to Islam ended up accepting Christ as her Lord & Saviour.

A prominent Muslim Sheikh is regretting on the famous Arabic TV channel 'Al-Jazeera' that 6 million Muslims in Africa are converting to Christianity every year.

I personally think he might be exaggerating the > figures to alarm Muslims, but his claims are quite damaging to Muslim propaganda of Islam being the fastest growing religion on planet earth.


Asif Mall

Asian Music Event!

Here is an email I received from Gerald Sunny in Alperton (sic):

Hi Wilson,

My name is Gerald and we meet in front of the Pakistani High Commission on 11 Aug at 09:20.

Just to let u know that we are organising a Christian musical concert on 21 Nov 2009.
to highlight Christian needs in Pakistan.

Venue: St James Church
Stanley Avenue


Nearest Station: Alperton

The Event is free entry and more details can be sourced by calling Tel: 07984315491



Tut tut, brother Gerald forgot to put a time on his email - I have requested further info!


The time of the event is 17:30 and Hamed Bailey will be performing.....

Tuesday 27 October 2009

Pakistani Christian Congress - All Parties Conference

Here is an article received from Brother Xavier Williams in Pakistan (sic):

Pakistan Christian Congress "All Parties Christian Conference" -Press Club Rawalpindi

The President Pakistan Masihi League Prof. Salamat Akhtar presided over the conference.
The focus of the conference was to maintain peace and harmony in Pakistan and to repeal the Blasphemy Laws ( 295-A, 295-B, and 295-C) The following speakers spoke in the conference:
Mr. Ashiq Bhatti, Chief Organizer, Pakistan Masihi League He explained the working and the objectives of the Pakistan Masihi League, he said we are fighting for the rights of the Christians. He said we have been demanding from past 24 years we have been fighting against the Governments for the Christian Community.

Mr. Yunis Gill, Social Worker
He said I feel sad when the Christians are treated as 3rd grade citizens. He said my hearts cries to see the current condition of the Christians of Pakistan. We have to stand up now, or will we always be treated like aliens. We need to stay firm on the stand that the Blasphemy law should get repelled.

Mr. Rizwan Paul, Chairman, LIFE for All
The young speaker started with enthusiasm. Rizwan Paul said that the Christians have been deprived of their rights for more than 60 years. He demanded that the Government of Pakistan to immediately repel the Blasphemy law which is used as a tactic against the Christians. He demanded that the government should give account of the people responsible for the killings of the Christians in Pakistan . He demanded that the people responsible for the Gojra, Kasur, and Sambrial incidents should be arrested and should go under trial of 295 C so that next time anyone who even thinks of such an act should think twice before committing such atrocities against the Christians. He demanded that such Black laws should get repelled immediately and the minorities should be exempted from such laws. He stressed that the Young Christians should stand up and pressurize the Government to let the Christian community ELECT their leaders rather than getting the puppet selected leaders who are powerless. Rizwan stressed that Education is one of the basic elements which can enable the Youth to think and realize their responsibilities. Quaid-e-Azam said that in Pakistan every citizen will be Equal and will have the right for go to their worship places and will be treated equally. He explained that "Life for All" is a rising star. We are a group of professionals and intellectuals at a forum united to uplift the community. We are working at the grass root level for education of the Christians and Capacity building.

Mr. Mehboob Sada, Director, Christian Study Center
Stressed that in this era we need to work wisely and responsibly. We should not let our emotions take over our minds. We need to promote harmony and Unity, only we can fight for our rights. We need to educate the youth so that they get equipped to face the world. Acting responsibly is more important than acting emotionally. He said I am happy to here today that the Young Christians are very hopeful and are acting responsibly. These are the rising stars and the leaders of tomorrow.

Mr. Ohm Parkash Nyran, Hindu Leader
Thanked Pakistan Christian Congress for inviting a Hindu leader to speak and express himself. He praised Prof. Salamat for his efforts for the Christian Community and said that the Government has deprived all the minorities of their rights. He said Hindus have always been ignored by the Government. He said that we don’t feel safe, we cant express ourselves. He praised the Christian leaders for standing for their rights.

Mr. Rashid, General Secretary , Pakistan Masihi League
Appreciated the efforts made by Prof. Salamat Akhtar who led a movement for getting the representation in National and Provincial Assemblies in 1971-1972. He said that the representation in the Assemblies is not a gift from Bhutto, infact it was earned by the blood shed by the Christians who protested at the Punjab House, Rawalpindi . He said that the same emotions, feelings and sacrifice is required to get the Blasphemy law. Rashid said we are ready to shed our blood for the community.

Dr. Stephen Salem Handed, Chairman , Pakistan Iqliati Rabita Party
Dr. Stephen said that he was a member of the PPP, he requested the Christians to vote for PPP and when they came into the power, they deviated from their words, so he was forced to leave PPP. He said that Bacha Khan, one of the founders of the ANP Party supported the Christians without their request. Bacha Khan always had a soft corner for the minorities and supported them. He said that this is one the qualities of the Pathans that they treat the minorities equally. Only the ANP supports the Christians in the NWFP, this is one of the reasons that the average of the cases of Blasphemy in NWFP are almost nonexistent. He said that it is so unfortunate that the fundamentalists have been the policy makers in Pakistan , the government cannot even say a word to these fundamentalists, he said that these fundamentalists have been making policies since the Bhutto era. Bhutoo, Nawaz Sharif and Mushraff never had the courage to say or stop these fundamentalists from making policies against the Minorites.

Ch. Yunis Joseph, Christian Leader
He thanked Prof. Salamat and Xavier William for organizing a platform for letting the leaders express themselves. He said I am very happy to see young Christians like Rizwan and Xavier who are working day in day out for the community. He said that he was very sad and got aggressive at an article which was published in a news paper "Daily Jung" abusing the sign of the Cross. He said why this writer has not been arrested or punished? He has insulted my Jesus and is roaming free, why? The news paper authorities say that he is a mad person, then why is this mad person working at the news paper? He should be arrested and sent to jail. He said that this person should be arrested under the article 295B.

Mr. Hanukah Bhatti, Christian Leader
He criticized the puppet leaders who are in the assembly; he said that we should never look up to these so called leaders. We should condemn them and stand united and demand the repelling of the Blasphemy law.

Mr. Faisal Anwar, Muslim Leader, Passdar-e-Pakistan
Faisal said I am amazed to see such leaders in the Christian Community present here today. He said Xavier William`s efforts for the community are clearly visible by managing to get these leaders at a platform. I am really impressed by Prof. Salamat, and agrees with all of these leaders that this Blasphemy law should be abolished. He said unfortunately in Pakistan these political parties are a group of family members, a son of a leader who doesn’t even know what politics is leading the party, where as these true leaders who have worked for more than 35 years are never even given the proper respect which they deserve. I am please to see such leaders here today and want to salute them. He said I am a Muslim, but I really want to get this Blasphemy Law repelled. He said that I am with the Christian Community in their efforts.

Mr. Xavier William, Coordinator, Pakistan Christian Congress
Thanked all the leaders for being there and specially thanked Prof. Salamat Akhtar for his guidance and praised his efforts for the community. Prof. Salamat Akhtar is a university and every Young Christian should become his student. Demanded that the President of Pakistan should repel the Blasphemy law and should except the Christians from such laws. I also know that this blasphemy law is always misused, mostly for personal enmity.

Fr. Anwar Patras, All Pakistan Christian Action Committee
Thanked Pakistan Christian Congress for arranging this conference and giving a chance to the Christian leaders to express themselves. He prayed for peace and harmony.
Prof. Salamat Akhtar, President, Pakistan Masihi League
He thanked Mr. Nazir S. Bhatti for selecting Rawalpindi for this conference as due to the sacrifice of the Christians of Rawalpindi we got the representation in the Assemblies. A gentleman is a person who doesn’t harm or hurt others. So we have to become a gentleman
He said that he read a few days back that some shoe manufacturer had written Allah underneath it, but he was not put under trial or arrested. I have been a professor of the History of Islam, I have researched and taught about the Prophet (PBUH) , the Prophet has a great importance, but is Allah important or the Prophet? But there is NO article or punishment in the constitution of Pakistan if you insult Allah in public. So if there is no article about Allah then why for a Prophet? Is this logical? He said I don’t understand this being a Professor of the History of Islam that we have a law for a Prophet but nothing for Allah. He said I have consulted so many lawyers they also are speechless on this, they said that this law which is only for Prophet is not justified. Then why don’t the Government understand this that this Blasphemy law is only a tool in the hands of the fundamentalists. He said I am a Patriotic Pakistani, we need to stand united and save Pakistan . If Pakistan will exist then we Christians and Muslims will exist.
I demand the President of Pakistan to immediately repel the Blasphemy law.
I also ask these politicians bring their money and bank accounts in Pakistan , and then we will not have any need to beg other Countries or the IMF for donations and loans. Then he presented his poetry and ended.




Tuesday 20 October 2009

Release International - Prayer request!


Tuesday, October 20, 2009:

Prayer support is crucial to those who suffer for their faith in Jesus. Please use these alerts to prompt your own prayers, and to facilitate prayer in your church and other Christian meetings. Please also send it on to other Christians. This information can also be reproduced in church magazines and news bulletins, provided the source is acknowledged.


Release wants to recruit volunteers from around the UK and Ireland to represent the needs of persecuted Christians to their churches. Could you be a Church Rep? Your core role would be to receive and disseminate information, and encourage prayerful support for the ministry within your church. How you develop the role depends on the time you have to give. Church Reps are a vital part of the Release team. Please prayerfully consider if you can join us – and pray that many others will take on this role too. To find out more, ring Gene on 01689 823491.

1. IRAN – Christians charged with apostasy but not 'anti-state activity':

A judge in Iran has dropped a charge of 'anti-state activity' against two Christian women – but they have now been formally charged with apostasy.Maryam Rustampoor and Marzieh Amirizadeh Esmaeilabad, who have been detained in Tehran's notorious Evin prison since March, have also been formally charged with 'propagating Christianity'.The women and their lawyer are said to be delighted with the judge's decision on October 7 to drop the more serious charge of 'anti-state activity'. Such decisions are rare in Iran, according to the religious rights charity Middle East Concern. Because of the judge's decision to drop this charge, the women's case will now be heard by a general court, not Iran's Revolutionary Court – which is another positive development. The Revolutionary Court deals with certain categories of crime, including matters relating to national security and acts deemed to 'undermine' the Islamic Republic. Elam Ministries, which serves the persecuted church in Iran, has reported that both women remain in poor health. On October 4, Maryam suffered severe food poisoning and was only given medical attention after much insistence.In a recent interview with the Voice of America Persian News Network, the women's lawyer said, 'My clients are not prepared to lie about their faith under any condition.'Iran's apostasy Bill – which would impose a life sentence on anyone leaving Islam – is still being considered by Parliament.(Sources: Christian Post, Elam Ministries, International Christian Concern, Iran Chamber Society, Middle East Concern)
• Thank God for positive developments in the case of Maryam and Marzieh. Pray that both formal charges against them will soon be dropped so they can be freed.
• Ask God to guard their minds and strengthen their bodies during this ordeal.

2. CHINA – Detained church leaders face anxious wait over prosecution threat:

More than 11 leaders of a large church in Shanxi province are waiting for officials to decide whether they will face prosecution for 'illegal' church activities.The leaders of the Fushan Church in Linfen city have been held since September 25, soon after much of their church compound was destroyed in a night-time attack by 400 police and officials (Prayer Alert, October 6, 2009). Dozens of Christians who were staging a 'sleep-in' at the compound were seriously hurt in the raid.The Religious Affairs Bureau for Huozhou has reportedly decided that the church is 'legitimate' – but the Fushan government has accused the church leadership of 'gross violations and law-breaking actions'. They are reportedly focusing their investigation on Senior Pastor Wang Xiaoguang and his wife Yang Rongli.The central Government has reportedly ordered 'all relevant government agencies' to prepare to use military force against any Christians who might react to the attack on the Fushan Church. Military police have been posted outside the church since September 26. Release partner China Aid says that 'more than 30 daughter churches in nearby townships' have been banned from meeting. Meanwhile, Pastor 'Bike' Mingxuan, head of the Chinese House Church Alliance, has been freed after spending a 'forced vacation' with his wife in Henan, courtesy of the Beijing authorities (Prayer Alert, October 6, 2009). The couple were detained from September 23 to October 4 apparently to keep them out of Beijing for the Communist Party's 60th anniversary celebrations earlier this month. There has been no news about another prominent Beijing pastor, Hua Huiqi, detained and removed from the city on September 17.(Sources: BosNewsLife, China Aid, Compass Direct)
• Pray that the leaders of Fushan Church will be released and all charges against them dropped. Pray that this church will continue to thrive.
• Thank God that Pastor Bike and his wife are now free. Pray for the release of Pastor Hua.

3. INDONESIA – Jakarta churches receive bomb threats:

Two congregations in the Jakarta area are on high alert after their church leaders received bomb threats.Rev Abidan Simanungkalit of the Batak Protestant Christian Church in Bogor Street, East Jakarta, had a call on his mobile on October 4 warning that a bomb would explode during Sunday worship. And, on the previous day, Rev Jeffry Lalamentik of the Bethel Indonesia church in north Bekasi received an anonymous call making the same threat.Police and bomb squad officers searched the area around both churches but found no explosives – and Sunday morning services have so far passed off without incident. Outside the Batak Protestant Christian Church, police found a package in a rubbish bin containing four large batteries, a clock and a can, prompting speculation that this may have been an attempt to provoke fear without creating an explosion.Pastor Simanungkalit said that his congregation had been shaken by the threat. 'People kept getting up to go outside and check on things,' he said of the service on October 4.Pastor Lalamentik's church is no stranger to persecution. Radical Islamist groups are campaigning for the construction of its new premises to be halted – and for the church to be shut down. Hundreds of protesters have demonstrated against the church outside Bekasi government offices. The church currently meets in the home of one of its leaders.Meanwhile, officials have ordered the closure of the Jakarta Christian Baptist Church, which meets in the home of Pastor Bedali Hulu. It appears the authorities have given in to pressure from radical Islamist groups who have intimidated church members for weeks. (Sources: Compass Direct, The Voice of the Martyrs Canada)
Pray that these Jakarta churches will keep their eyes on Jesus amid persecution.
• Pray that the Indonesian authorities will do more to uphold religious freedom and stand up to pressure from Islamist radical groups to close down churches.

4. PAKISTAN – Christians dismayed by courts' leniency towards Gojra suspects:

Churches in Punjab are dismayed by court decisions to release on bail 19 people accused of involvement in the attack on Gojra in which 11 Christians died.On October 12, the district and sessions court of Toba Tek Singh granted bail to six people accused of inciting and perpetrating violence during the raid in August. Thirteen other people facing similar charges – including radical clerics who are alleged to have incited the violence – were bailed by the High Court in Lahore on September 7.'I am sure that, soon after securing their release, they will resume their anti-Christian activities again,' Khalid Gill of the All Pakistan Minorities Alliance told International Christian Concern, a religious rights charity.Up to 3,000 heavily armed Islamist radicals raided Gojra on August 1, destroying 40 Christian homes and attacking villagers (Prayer Alert, August 11, 2009). This followed an assault on the nearby village of Korian which was completely destroyed on July 30 after a local Christian family was accused of blasphemy for allegedly desecrating the Koran – a charge they strongly deny. (Sources: International Christian Concern, UCAN)
Continue to pray for Christians in Korian and Gojra coming to terms with these violent attacks.
• Pray for the Christian family from Korian who have been accused of blasphemy.Our next Prayer Alert issue will be on Tuesday, November 3, 2009.

Through our international network of missions, we serve persecuted Christians in 30 countries around the world by supporting pastors and Christian prisoners, and their families; supplying Christian literature and Bibles; and working for justice. Release is a member of the UK organisations Global Connections, the Evangelical Alliance and the Micah Network.

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Monday 19 October 2009

NJCP Press Relase

I received a copy of this press release from Brother Yuel Bhatti in Lahore this weekend (sic):

Dear Friends,

Please find below the press Release from NCJP.

Yuel Bhatti
Lahore Pakistan

Press Release

The Extra Judicial murder of Fanish Robert, an accused under blasphemy in Sialkot is sheer negligence on part of governments; NCJP

The District Police Officer Sialkot, Mr. Waqar Ahmad Chohan informed the local Priest that the youth accused of offering insult to Quran at Jatheki on 11 September, 2009 has committed suicide in the jail. He had been shifted to jail in Sialkot the night before on 14 September 2009.
Fanish was taken into custody after the allegations that he had thrown a chapter from Quran (Para) in a drain when he met Ms. Hina Asghar, whom he happened to be liking or nurturing a relationship reportedly. Girls mother was reported to be a witness to alleged incident.

The allegations were followed by massive reaction orchestrated by local Muslim clerics. A church and a few houses were attack on September 11th, 2009 around 12.30 a.m. After the Friday afternoon prayers, the extremist organizations operating in the area whipped up a hate campaign through mosque loudspeakers and collected a mob ready to attack the Christians Houses (35-40) in Jatheki, a Town with a large Muslim population. However the police and rangers were able to prevent further mob attacks. Riasat Masih, the father of Fanish was arrested and beaten but was released on 12th September when Fanish was taken into custody.
NCJP Stance:

The National Commission for Justice and Peace (NCJP) condemns the killing of Fanish in custody. We refuse to accept the version of local authorities that he committed suicide spontaneously after he was shifted to jail from police lock up.

We demand a credible investigation and registration of a case under a murder charge. Persons responsible for death of innocent youth, directly or indirectly, should be brought to justice. Archbishop Lawrence John Saldanha and Peter Jacob, the chair and Executive Secretary of the NCJP through this statement call upon all sections of the society to realize the danger of blasphemy laws. (For religious minorities these laws have proven to be a catastrophe which can surface anytime anywhere. In the past few weeks circumstances have been created at a number of places in Punjab and in Karachi.

We consider this a failure on part of Provincial government of Punjab and Federal government who worked with administration and rehabilitation approach rather than prevention. The governments should admit and inform the masses of Pakistan about the organization creating situations using this law. The Federal government should immediately move to repeal of section 295 B, C and 298 A, b and C of Pakistan Penal Code.

Archbishop Lawrence John Saldanha Peter Jacob
Chair and Head of Catholic Church in Pakistan Executive Secretary

Friday 16 October 2009

Skills development - key to progress!

Here is a response to my recent articles on Christians being persecuted by our own in Pakistan. It was received from brother Tanweer Khan (sic):

" I have now been through several E-mails you have forwarded to me, which are quite informative, but the challenge at the moment is to UPLIFT our poor and rejected christian brothers and sisters in Pakistan,who have been pushed down to the bottom of the heap systematically in the last 61 years of the life of Pakistan. They need education and skills to compete in the open market to re-gain their self respect and confidence.Y

our current e-mail is proof of the current leadership's role in destroying our communities identity and putting them down even more. People with understanding and compassion have to stand up for them and be counted.

I was in Pakistan only three weeks ago and saw the destruction brought upon our people by the majority population in Gojra and the neighbouring village, with my own eyes.

I was shocked and disturbed by the helplessness and suffering of our people and was disappointed by the LACK OF INTEREST shown by the authorities.

The attacks are still happening in Pakistan and this thing is now spreading throughout the country. OUR PEOPLE NEED TO HAVE A VOICE AND BE ACCEPTED AS PART OF THE COUNTRY,AND TO DO WORK MUST START RIGHT NOW.E

Education and training for young people will be a good start,and if Pakistani Christians in this country and the rest of Europe and America start to sponsor young Christians in Pakistan, starting with even one child in poor families. Then in the next coming years, a great CHANGE will come into our peoples lives.

I know people in in Pakistan who are already doing this without the help of any established church leadership and making a difference. Their hand needs to be strengthened. Are you willing to say yes to this or give it a thought.Please let me know and then we can take it further. At the moment i,m trying to get LIKE-MINDED people together to give this vision some kind of PRACTICAL shape.I hope to hear from you soon."

Yours in Christ,


I am looking to hold a meeting with interested partisans in this country that would like to start the good work to bring change to the current state of social and political culture in Pakistan, towards Christian's. If you would like to attend please let me know and I will arrange a date.

Wednesday 14 October 2009

Why is our heritage being sold from under our feet!

The history of the St Peters Church land sale fiasco is best described in this email sent via Brother Kashif Nawab in 2006 (sic):

"On 12th feb 2005,the parish council and members of St Peters church in Faisalabad were shocked to see developers working within the church and surrouding grounds. While investigating the development they were advised that Bishop John Samuel leader of the church was planning to build a college.

On 13th feb 20005 parish council saw glossy reflecting mirrors on front side of the hall towards the main road (It looked like a showroom.)

On 14th feb the parish council and membersof the church annouced a General Meeting which was held in the church. Further investigation and following a meeting with Bishop John samuel of the church, it was discovered that the aforementioned Bishop had sold the expensive land to developers without the consent or knowledge of the parish council or faithful members. It was also revealed that it was not a college be built, but actually a car showroom and petrol station.

This decimation of the church and ensuing inability for worship services raised the ire of many concerned and a Christian picket was arranged resulting in the ransacking of the development.

On their request police(SHO)arrived at the scene following careful inspection of the incident the Police sided with parishioners and asked the developers to immediately vacate the church.

The parish council have involved Mr.Sohail Amer executive members of this diocesed his brother Mr.Kanwal Amer members of the local council and chairman of minorities affairs,for their assistance in this matter.

Due to the serious nature of the incident and the threats of violence and death invoked by Bishop John Samuel, a request was made to Wilson Chowdhry to approcah the British Anglican Church. However, the Anglican Church have stated that the Church of Pakistan is an independant Organisation and that they have no jurisdication over any of their decision. Andrew Norman had advised Wilson he would contact Bishop Alexander Malik and ask him to respond to Wilson directly."

Just to let you know - I never got a response from Alexander Malik and I still wonder why he did not see fit to investigate this issue, nor did he choose any ostensible rap on the knuckles to appease the affected - even as a small gesture...?
It is such a shame that we always talk about the crime of our Heritage being sold under our feet. Yet it is all of us that just sit back and watch as it continues and pervades into areas adjoining our churches. It wont be long at this rate till our churches become car showrooms and the congregation hold services in tents next to the site of former glorious buildings that used to extol the very virtue of our glorious Lord.

Faisalabad St Peter's Church Land Sale Evidence

An article describing the picket against the development of the Car showroom at St Peter's Church.
Images of the early phase of the development
Early construction phase for the Car showroom
A letter from the elected Chair of the Parish Council

I fail to understand why our Christian Leadership in the UK have not challenged the powers of the Church of Pakistan. The Church of Pakistan formed out of a collaboration between the United Reform, Methodist and Anglican Churches in Pakistan. The Arch Bishop Alexander Malik and his Bishops run an autocratic organisation that has not recourse for traceability or accountability for it's actions. The church itself is completely independent of the British Anglican (Church of England) establishment.
This unaccountability has resulted in a number of avaricious actions by the leadership in the church of Pakistan that has only blemished its reputation and caused detriment to its congregation - many of whom have lost faith. Is it not time we hollered for a review of the existing mechanisms and challenged for a more just approach to the leadership of our church - with an excommunication procedure that could be used as a last resort to remove rogue Bishops and Archbishops. here in the UK many of our leadership invite Archbishop Alexander Malik to dine with them - have those same people ever thought of challenging him for an amendment to a constitution that permits self-preservation - through it's lack of accountability caveats. The answer as you well know is a definitive "NO!" Maybe now it is time for change.....

Christians killing Christians - what next!

Here is an image of Bishop John Samuel - Friend or Foe you decide...?

I received the following correspondence form brother Xavier Williams In Pakistan. The cruelty illustrated in this plead for help is very demoralising. How can we campaign for justice for our people when our own leadership in Pakistan is causing as much distress. I am aware that it was purported that the Bishop of Faisalabad sold land next to St Johns church to Muslim developers who then built a noisy car showroom next to the church. It was also reported in local Faisalabad media that the new construction caused noise pollution interfering with church services and that rampaging Christian's were threatened at gun point by the Bishop when they picketed the development and destroyed the initial development.

This sale is said to be for personal gain and I wonder how many of us support organisations in Pakistan without the necessary reports that provide authenticated, traceability and accountability for the usage of the donations. Should we not as a concerned community - champion change to the unscrupulous actions that such organisations and individuals are taking towards vulnerable people. Here is the email I received:

A Christian Widow Mrs. Mary James lives in Dhoke Ellahi Buksh Rawalpindi. She lives next to the FGA church and has 2 young daughters. She lives with her daughters in a house worth 35 Lacs.
The Pastor incharge of FGA in Dhoke Ellahi Buksh is Pastor Rehmat Bhatti`s sons Asher Bhatti and Nadeem Bhatti have been giving threats to the widow and have tried to take over her house.

They beat her in the street and have been forcing her to sign the documents of transfer of the house on their names.She cried for help, but no one in the street helped her, even Pastor Rehmat didn't stop his sons Asher Bhatti and Nadeem Bhatti. They mercilessly beat Mrs. Mary and her daughters. They have now taken over the house and Mrs. Mary and her daughters were forced to leave.

Asher Bhatti and Nadeem Bhatti have been threatening the Christians for quite a long time. They carry guns with them and threaten anyone who tries to stop them. So no one dared to stop them.Mrs. Mary even went to the police, but the police refused to register a case due to the influential contacts of Asher bhatti and Nadeem Bhatti and the SHO is also their friend. Mrs. Mary is crying for justice.Asher and Nadeem Bhatti are running a car rental at Committe chowk by the name of "Bhatti Motors".

In another incident some financial aid was given to the FGA Church by some NGOs and individuals like Mr. Adil Azeem, Mr. Johnson Gill and Mr. Robin James, this aid has been used for personal use by the Pastor Rehmat and Mr. Asher Bhatti. As Mr. Asher Bhatti was a member of the Church Committee and dominated everyone and uses all the money for personal use.No one in the Church dares to ask them any thing due to their fear, so there is no audit or monitoring.
Please publish the news.


Obviously we can verify the veracity of this report at this early stage. However, we have asked for corroborating evidence and contact details for the church so that we can enquire into the matter. We are wondering if their are any groups in our community that tackle such matter's and await yany response. Please do share your thoughts on this despicable event.

Tuesday 13 October 2009

Christians and Muslims unite for peace!

The youth peace march in Pakistan detailed in my previous post was attended by both Muslim and Christian children. Such efforts are a real beacon of hope for the people living in the existing political and social turmoil. Hearing of such efforts is a refreshing change to the negative stories that have resonated from Pakistan of late. I am really inspired by this work that Bethak-NGO and Shahzad Francis have undertaken to espouse community cohesion. A forward thinking organisation that can overlook the recent persecution enact holistic community projects like this, deserves our recognition and applause. I just hope others recognise the need to retain the principle of love that is needed, if we are to get a positive solution to our campaign for peace in Pakistan.

Monday 12 October 2009

Shabaz Bhatti inspires at the CSW Conference!

Stuart Walker and his colleague enjoying themselves after a excellent event at the Emmanuel Centre in London on Saturday. It is purported that close to 300 people attended the very successful evnet and I was encourged by the amount of western (non-ethnic) people that had learnt about the issue of Pakistani Christian Persecution, for the first time and had been inspired by the presentation from Shabhaz Bhatti.
I met with Shabhaz Bhatti and informed him of our protest march which he seemed very pleased about recognising, just how hard the British Representatives of our community are working to establish better social circumstances for our family in Pakistan.
I am looking for a fuller report on the event and would appreciate any articles from anyone who attended the whole event.

Suffer not the Children!

BETHAK-NGO arranged a Children Peace Walk on 9th of October 2009 in collaboration with National Council for Interfaith Dialogue-Pakistan.
Children of both communities participated in a Peace Walk. Mr. Shahzad Francis advised the children to be a torch bearer for peace by playing respect to all who live within their social circle.
He said that peace can be restored in our society if our children learn to live in peace and harmony with one another. He also said that this it is especially important that they should pray regularly for the establishment of peace in the country of Pakistan and in their homes.
He went on stressing the values of tolerance and love for all , so that this generation would lead future generations of children to become ambassadors of peace and harmony. Absteining from any clashes, disputes and enmity. The Peace Walk ended with a resolution to carry the message of peace and harmony in our respective social circle.
Shahzad Francis

Poem of Blasphemy by Amer

Sialkot Updated Situation from Javed Gull

Wednesday 7 October 2009

New dimension in tackling the issue of Christian persecution!

I was pleased to engage with a senior figure for the Pakistani Christian community Dr Peter David. He has informed of a new channel set up to highlight the persecution of Christians globally. This is a new dimension in creating a focus on the plight of Christians worldwide and provides an opportunity for people to uncover the hidden truths - empowering us with knowledge that we can use in our campaign for justice. Please do try to view the new channel. Here is the most favourable email from Brother Peter:

Dear Wilson

Thank you for advising me that you are arranging a demonstration on the 19th December in front of the Pak. High Commission.

I confirm that if asked we will announce information re. this event on our TV programme that we broadcast on the following times from Sky Channel 582

Saturday 7-8 PM
Sunday 7-8 PM
Monday 7-9 PM
Tuesday 7-8 PM
Wednesday 7-8 PM
Thursday 6-7 PM
Friday 6.30- 7.30 PM

The first part of our programme comprises of Christian persecution world wide with particular emphasis on Blasphemy laws and their effect on Christians in Pakistan. However we have recently run stories regarding persecution of Coptic Church in Egypt, Abduction and killing of Iraqi Christians, imprisonment of Christians in Iran and killing of priests recently in India and Columbia.

Almost every day we have live reports from Lahore on Christian persecution in Pakistan. We have two full time correspondents one in :Lahore and another in Islamabad.

Thank you for choosing to call me earlier on today.

Kindest regards

Dr. Peter J. David

If you want more details on our proposed protest please click (here)

Tuesday 6 October 2009

US Peace Award for Shabaz Bhatti

Click on image to enlarge

Here is an article received from our reporter in Pakistan Qamar Rafiq. It details an award won by Shahbaz Bhatti "Pakistan Federal Ministar for Minorities Affairs" by a USA organisation.
Shabaz Bhatti will be speaking at the Christian Solidarity meeting held on the 10th October. Do come for what looks like being a very exciting event. Here is the communication received from Qamar:
Dear Bro Wilson

I hope you have had a good day today!

I do thank you for giving me your time to listen me. I am sorry it was so hard to hear but it was good even to talk in this medium.

Mr. Bhatti who is the federal Minister for minorities affairs have won a peace award in USA. His longstanding efforts and great vision will be landmark for getting freedom and justice for Christians in Pakistan. Over half century he has travelled all around the globe and in all forums of the world he demanded for freedom and justice for his nation.

We should support his vision and would promise to join each other to build peace homes for those who are homeless. Attach is the article issued in regard with Mr. Bhatti by US officials.


Qamar Rafiq
I have to say when I called his mobile we had a very patchy connection but God helped us understand each other!

Shabaaz Bhatti is visiting the Uk.

Christian Solidarity Worldwide have organised a seminar and conference meeting in London for the 10th October 2009.

The meeting will be held at the Emmanuel Centre, 9-23 Marsham Street, London, SW1P 3DW. The venue will be open from 10:00 until 17:00 and guest speakers include:

Shahbaz Bhatti Pakistan's Federal Minister for Minorities Affairs and a Prominent Christian.
US Congressman Frank Wolf - Author of the International Religious Freedom Act
Jonathan Aitken -CSW President

And many more speakers and performesr that will make this a great day for fellowship, fun, learning and worship.

Tickets cost £5.00 and well worth the expense!

More details on Christian Solidarity Worldwide can be found by following this link:

Monday 5 October 2009

News from sialkot

Click on any image to enlarge - our thanks to Hamd osana for the articles.

Pakistani Christians unite!

A meeting was held on the 3rd October in Nottingham led by Pervaiz Sardar whose ambition it was to get all the various religious and political leaders in our community to agree to work together in partnership to tackle the persecution and intolerance our brothers in sisters in Pakistan are subjected to.

In an interview Mr Sardar stated:

"The meeting was held with a focus on unity within our community. We invited all political and religious leaders to unite so that we can unite tackle the persecutiom and inequality of our people in Pakistan and to bring relief to our brothers and sisters."

Yacoub Masih, Dr Peter David, Dr Mujeeb Chowdhry, Javaid Iqbal and many other familiar respected leaders form our community were at their meeting and supported the development of a overarching group to unite all Pakistani Christians Organisations to tackle these issues. This will not impact on their regular work but will serve the purpose of providing a network so that work is not duplicated and organic cross-pollination of ideas benefits all groups.

The total number of visitors to the event is purported to be around 100 people. I myself attended late, as I had to by a new oil cap, when my original one slipped from my hand and fell somewhere within the infinitesimal pieces of my engine. I met with brother Pervaiz just at the end of the meeting see picture inset and am pleased that his meeting was both successful and well attended.

Pervaiz also informed us:

"A Successful outcome of the meeting is that all leaders are willing to sit on one platform and to combat this international issue of persecution in Pakistan with vigour. All Leaders have indicated that as Christians and Pakistanis, they will always be united on the issue of persecution and equality for our people in Pakistan."

I do not know at this stage how the leadership intend to progress with this new "Leadership Board". I am in the process of obtaining feedback from other key figures form the meetings and will feed this back on a future post.

In the meanwhile, a sensible decision has been made and we should all feel satisfied that our existing leaders are providing an opportunity for real change with a level of co-ordination that has been lacking in previous times.
Well done Pervaiz Sardar!

Pervaiz has also highlighted the fact that teh Pakistani Government has always indicated that only 2% of the country is Christian. Christian authorities on both the UK and Pakistan belive the percentage of Christians is greater than this. I support his notion and beleive that the Pakistani Government should be badgered to produce a more accurate account of exactly how large a percentage Christians form of the total poulation count in Pakistan. Some more intensive demographical analysis could contribute to a fairer proportional representation within the National and local politics of Pakistan.
Please share your thoughts....

Thursday 1 October 2009

Message from Jean Lambert MEP

Here is a copy of the message received from Jean Lambert MEP Yesterday:
Dear Wilson,

Thanks for your email to Jean.Jean is about to become the Chair of the European Parliament's South Asia Delegation. One of the countries this delegation covers is Pakistan.

Such matters have been raised with then President Musharraf when he visited the European Parliament, and the Parliament continues to monitor human rights issues, including minority and religious rights in Pakistan.

Jean has raised these issues herself, and we have taken up individual human rights cases with the Pakistan Government over the years.Caroline Lucas's office has, I understand, already referred you to the recent European Parliament human rights report:

Below is the text for paragraph 98, which relates to Pakistan.98:

Urges the new Pakistani Government to take adequate steps towards the improvement of the human rights situation in Pakistan; refers to Amnesty International's request urging the Pakistani Government to reinstate all the judges illegally deposed by former President Pervez Musharraf in 2007; welcomes the fact that the EU deployed an independent election observation mission for the general parliamentary elections in February 2008; notes with satisfaction that the elections were competitive and resulted in increased public confidence in the democratic process; notes that the EU is committed to supporting the strengthening of democratic institutions, and calls on the Council and the Commission to support the movement for democracy started by the judiciary and the bar, particularly by extending invitations to some of their representatives, including Mr Choudhry; stresses the need for human rights to be one of the EU's main priorities within the framework of continuing dialogue with Pakistan;

Regarding your request for a meeting, Jean thinks it would be better to wait for the new delegation to become fully set up and operational first.

By all means send Jean any relevant information in the meantime.Kind regards,Danny Bates for Jean Lambert MEPGreen Party Member of the European Parliament for LondonWeb: