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  1. Clarion says that Christianity was the most persecuted group in 2016. Given Clarion's bias I expected the story to be that Islam was the reason, but it seems Islam is only responsible for some of it. North Korea also appears to be a significant contributor. "The report said that 90,000 Christians were killed last year, of which 30% were killed by Islamists. The rest were killed by state and non-state persecution around the world, including in North Korea" Makes me wonder what other non-Muslim states and groups persecute Christians. Anyone care to enlighten me?
  2. I'm not a Catholic, and I never would have considered becoming one before this new pope came along, but after two popes playing geopolitics games and hiding Church crimes...especially the sex crimes, my impression is much more favourable than when Benny was still in charge! I'm surprised that his hard-hitting speech on the environment doesn't show up here, and even more surprised that he's done a 180 from the last guys, and is telling the powerful and prominent Catholics that preventing abortion and birth control isn't enough to consider yourself a good Catholic! From the speech: In our age of capitalist christianity, it's no wonder that Prosperity Gospel adherents, who have turned the New Testament message upside down, are shocked and bewildered when pointed towards the Gospel of Matthew or especially Acts. ch. 5. On another topic, the speech also called attention to the plight of Christians in the Mid-east, who are in danger of being erased in nations like Syria and Iraq...where some of the first Christian communities were established. Thanks to "regime change" and giving money and guns to "moderate" rebels, these communities are subject of ethnic cleansing right now. Ever since the fall of Saddam, I haven't heard much of anything coming from conservatives and assorted warhawks about the blowback faced by Christians in the ME.
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