28 March, 2013

Wife of imprisoned pastor speaks out – CNN Belief Blog - CNN.com Blogs

Saeed Abedini, a U.S. citizen of Iranian birth, was arrested and charged in Iran last June during a visit. Abedini, 32, converted to Christianity from Islam and then became a pastor, living in Boise, Idaho. He has reportedly been detained in Tehran's notorious Evin Prison since late September. In the Islamic Republic of Iran, a Muslim who converts to another faith can face the death penalty.
"They've charged him with Christian gatherings, and they're saying it is a threat to the national security," Naghmeh Abedini said.
Saeed Abedini and his wife, Naghmeh Abedini
and children in happier times
Evidently Rev. Abedini has been sentenced to 8 years in an Iranian prison. This, for the crime of serving as pastor for the Christian community in that country. This is not something that can be tolerated by civilized countries.

The tiny Christian communities in Iran and Iraq can trace their roots back to the earliest days of the faith. It was the apostles themselves who journeyed to those lands in response to Jesus' command to bring his gospel to every corner of the world. Surely to God a community of faith that predates any other faith currently practiced in the Persian region must be granted the right to worship and pray as a pre-condition of Iran being allowed to participate in international organizations. 

To fail to stand up now on issues such as this will create great problems for us down the road as a society. While Catholics are currently the fastest growing Church worldwide, it is not the case in North America and Europe when demographic trends have reversed what was the 'baby boom' into a baby bust. To maintain the economic capacity to fund our social and medical programs, these western countries are importing more and more Islamic followers as additional taxpayers. If trends hold as they are now, countries like France and England will count a majority of Muslims among their citizens. If we fail to negotiate now the appropriate set of rules for dealing with minority rights for countries to follow, it will be too late when we find ourselves among that minority in a generation or two.

So, do you want your kids and grandkids to have the same rights and freedoms that we enjoy now as the majority group? Then pick up a pen, a phone, or hit the keyboard and demand that the Canadian government intervene on Saeed Abedini's behalf.

Thank you.
Wife of imprisoned pastor speaks out – CNN Belief Blog - CNN.com Blogs

4 comments:

  1. What kind of spiritual message is being revealed in the appeal to an 'ethnic cleansing?'
    "An injustice anywhere is an injustice everywhere."
    Followers of Islam are called Muslims and you can’t redefine that term to suit you’re sorry agenda. This is precisely the same kind of propaganda and hate mongering that has repeatedly preceded the most vicious and depraved atrocities known to man. It’s root is evil and you must change you’re way. It does no good for the Catholic Church, it does no good for humankind , it does nothing to spread love or joy and it does a great deal of harm to our Muslim brothers and sisters everywhere in the world. You need to do better Fr. Tim. You need to be more motivated by love and less by fear and you need to apologize.

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  2. Larry: It isn't propaganda. It isn't fear mongering. 95%+ of Muslims are peace loving individuals who want nothing more than to live in peace with us. But my point still stands and is no insult to them.

    a) In the West, Christians have held the majority position meaning we got to set the rules
    b) According to demographers, this is in the process of changing
    c) Islamic states that exist today have an entirely different way of organizing society because there is no 'separation of church and state' in their theology

    Conclusion: There will be a drive to reorganize our society if they do not effect the same theological development that Christianity did during the Enlightenment.

    This change was fought by the Church and it was a very tumultuous and danger time for societies which were ripped apart by wars and conflict. It was finally resolved when states all over Europe ripped power from the hands of the Church, forcing it to come to the theological understanding we hold today.

    Giving up power is not something that institutions/organizations do easily. This article stands as proof of this in Iran. It is hardly unique among the Islamic nations although it is one of the worst offenders when it comes to oppressing other religions. I am arguing that now is the time to put pressure on such theocracies to see that their actions will not work in the 21st century meaning there's an urgent need for Islam to redefine their concept of 'Ummah' so as to reflect the practices and societal norms required to maintain a modern, secular society.

    Last point: I am not criticizing individuals here. There are more than few Muslims in the greater Mattawa area and I have been lucky enough to come to know them. But even they are afraid what will happen in 50-100 years if Islam doesn't make this essential change.

    Fr. Tim

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  3. “Essential change” is indeed necessary but my point is WE (human beings, brothers and sisters in humanity) on this planet need to CHANGE. How can YOU change? How can YOU do better to communicate God's Love.
    Stop, examine more closely what you are doing and saying. Do not deny the truth that you are afraid of one ideology being overthrown by another and you want to instil the same level of fear and panic in others. Stop denying the reality that this attitude you want to develop in others is and always has been the foundation for war and genocide - that’s not you’re intent but it is the reality nonetheless.- Stop the denying the truth that this kind of talk does so much harm to all Muslim people and is in direct opposition to a growing world view ( inspired by Christ Himself) that we human beings are learning to accept and embrace one another’s differences.
    There are injustices everywhere and yes we should - moved and guided by compassion and empathy- do all we can to be aware of them in their particular person and place of events so to seek a just end for the oppressed no matter who or where they are. It should never ever lead us to the generalization of judging a whole race , religion or culture based on particular merits.
    On one hand you worn that the infiltration of ‘these’ people into the Western world is a grave threat to our way culture and Christianity and that’s because the will soon become a majority, while on the other hand you say it’s only about 3% of these that we have to worry about. You fool yourself and perhaps some of you’re friends with this sort of rhetoric to defend and rationalize the claims you have made above but it dose not serve the interest in the greater good to change the world to make it a better place.
    I don’t know about you Fr. Tim , but I am not engaged in any debate here to win or lose. I am simply trying to express my experience with the truth.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dan Tomlin, Almonte29 March, 2013

      Just to add a bit more info. on the real situation.
      In Belgium now the Muslim community is in the majority. In not too many years France, Michigan, Italy, and , possibly Great Britain will be in the same dilemma.
      Have you heard the truth about many single young Muslim men have come to Canada, U SA, and other countries just to impregnate a young female, and then leave the country?
      This is not fiction. I know of 3 cases in Ottawa in one year.
      You must understand the Muslim culture does not live by our morals, sensibilities, or
      Christian ideals of Truth and Charity.
      Dan Tomlin

      Delete

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