On June 22, the Pro Europa Christiana Federation held a rally in front of the European Parliament to launch its signature campaign in favor of the recognition of an annual World Day against Christianophobia.
In Brussels’ Luxembourg Square, a few dozen members distributed thousands of leaflets to passersby. To attract public attention, those from various TFP organizations helping with the distribution wore a red cape and carried a red standard emblazoned with a golden lion.
March 2 was the date chosen for the World Day against Christianophobia, because on that fatal day, this year, Shahbaz Bhatti, Pakistani Minister for Minorities, was murdered because of his Catholic faith. The use of the term Christianophobia refers to the persecution of Christians in Islamic countries. It also includes abusive secular laws in the West that hinder the practice of the Faith such as the prohibition of crucifixes in public buildings in Italy.
According to the promoters of the campaign, every five minutes a Christian is killed, which makes Christianophobia one of the worst social evil of our times. However, the issue is often ignored by world authorities.
To stop the killing of thousands of innocent people, Pro Europa Christiana Federation wrote a public appeal to the UN General Secretary, accessible by Internet at a special web address: www.againstchristianophobia.org.
“The blood of martyrs is the seed of Christianity,” the appeals reads, “but this is no reason to allow so much of it to be shed, nor to stand by with folded arms.”
During the public rally, members shouted slogans appealing to the conscience of the passersby:
1. Shahbaz Bhatti, Imran Masih, Asia Bibi… / the list of the victims gets longer and longer / What shall we do for our persecuted Christian brothers throughout the world?
2. Never in the history of human cultural conflicts/, has so much evil / been done by so few fanatics / to so many innocents / Nice speeches are not enough to stop the killings, / We need action / Promote March 2 as the World Day against Christianophobia!
3. Burglary and destruction of churches / Blasphemous exhibitions / Discrimination at the workplace / Disrespect for the right to Conscientious objection / Christianophobia does not stop at Turkey’s borders / It is carried out by our own governments and by the European institutions
4. Militant secularism wants to reduce Christians to second-class citizens / Will we accept to become strangers in our own land?
An annual World Day against Christianophobia would be an occasion to draw the attention of public opinion, social movements, policy makers and the media to this crucial issue and to provide a unique annual opportunity for Christians to defend their rights in society.
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