Zprávy HCJB 1.6.2004

    Křesťané po celém světě si v sobotu 5. června připomenou „děti v ohrožení“. Věřící se shromáždí v kostelech, školách a domech, aby se společně modlili za děti na ulicích, zneužívané v rodinách, sloužící v armádě, nucené k prostituci, podvyživené a všechny děti, které potřebují pomoc druhých. Více informací na www.viva.org. (Latin America Mission News Service)
   25 KILLED AS SAUDI FORCES FREE HOSTAGES WHILE BAPTISTS PRAY As concerned American Southern Baptists encouraged tens of thousands of churches to fast and pray for Saudi Arabia and other troubled Arab nations Sunday, May 30, Saudi forces stormed a housing compound in the Persian Gulf City freeing dozens of American and other foreign hostages, including Christians, held by Islamic militants since Saturday. However, help came too late for up to half of the estimated 50 hostages held inside the Oasis compound in Khobar, a housing complex for foreign workers as they were killed by Islamic gunmen who also reportedly forced some hostages to convert to Islam. A statement purported to be from an al-Qaeda-linked group and posted on an Islamic website, said its militants had "slaughtered" an Italian and a Swedish hostage, the British Broadcasting Corporation reported. Among the 25 killed were also Asians and at least nine hostages who had their "throats cut by the kidnappers when they tried to escape at night by the stairs," before the rescue operation began, Nijar Hijazin, a Jordanian computer engineer, told Agence France Press. He said he was one of the 25 hostages who were freed. The group also included Americans and at least five Lebanese people, some of whom were forced to abandon their faith in Christ, Associated Press reported. The rescue operation began early Sunday with special security forces running on the roof of the high-rise building after a previous attempt to storm the building was abandoned when booby traps were discovered, Saudi officials said. This was the second deadly assault against foreigners in Saudi Arabia in less than a month. Clyde Meador of the U.S.-based International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention, said this year's "Day of Prayer and Fasting for World Evangelization 2004" on Sunday was focused on the Arab peninsula. (Assist News Service) INDIA'S NEW PRIME MINISTER SELECTS CHRISTIAN TO JOIN CABINET Good news continues pouring out of India where the ruling Congress Party recently installed Manmohan Singh as the country's first-ever non-Hindu as prime minister. But the good news doesn't end there, reported Rochunga Pudaite, founder of Bibles for the World. "My dear friend, P.R. Kyndiah from northeastern India, was not only elected by an overwhelming majority to become a member of parliament, but the prime minister of India inducted him as one of his cabinet members," he said. Kyndiah is a Christian. Bibles for the World distributes copies of God's Word around the globe to addresses listed in telephone books. Kyndiah's appointment could protect that work, Pudaite said. "There are 42 million telephone subscribers whose names and addresses we have, and we'd like to make a Bible available to all of them. That will have an impact -- the kind of which we have never known before." (Mission Network News) SECURITY TIGHTENED AFTER BOMB BLASTS SHAKE KARACHI, PAKISTAN Pakistani police tightened security around foreign embassies Thursday, May 27, one day after a policeman died and at least 32 people were injured in two bomb blasts in Karachi amid worries about growing Islamic violence against Western and Christian targets in the country. The explosions near the Pakistan-American Cultural Center in the port city underscored concern among human rights watchdogs about the increased pressure on both foreign and Pakistani Christians as they have been linked by Islamic militants of al-Qaeda and other groups to the U.S.-led war on terror. Barnabas Fund, which monitors especially the situation of Christians in mainly Muslim nations, reported that Muslim groups are using violence, kidnapping and torture to force Christians to give up their faith and become their followers. The government of Pakistan has officially expressed its support for a crackdown against Islamic extremism and the war on terror. Less than 3 percent of Pakistan's 135 million people are Christians. (Assist News Service) PAKISTANI BELIEVER DIES FROM BRUTAL POLICE ATTACK Samuel Masih, a Pakistani Christian accused of blasphemy under Pakistani law, died at 9 p.m. local time Friday, May 28, in the Lahore hospital where he was a patient. Masih was arrested Aug. 23, 2003, accused of throwing waste against the side of a mosque. He was held in the Lahore Central Jail until, suffering from tuberculosis, he was transferred to a local hospital on May 22. Two days later Masih was attacked by one of the policemen assigned to guard his room. The policeman, a Muslim, reportedly told investigators that it was his "religious duty" as a Muslim, to kill the Christian man. "I have offered my religious duty for killing the man. I'm spiritually satisfied and ready to face the consequences," he said. A funeral was held on the weekend, and the situation was reportedly tense. (Voice of the Martyrs) CHRISTIANS OPTIMISTIC ABOUT SUDAN'S HISTORIC PEACE ACCORD The people of Sudan are warmly welcoming Sudan's peace deal that could pave the way for an end to Africa's longest-running civil war pitting the Islamic government against rebels and non-Muslims in the south. While the accord brings joy to the survivors in the south, war in the Darfur region threatens the newly forged accord. Jerry Dykstra of Open Doors' says whether or not the agreement will hold is the next big question. "We're going to have to leave it in the hands of the Lord. . . . The accord still has to be put into effect down the road, and so that's the key. We need to keep on praying that this will really end the fighting." Dykstra says no matter what happens, the ministry's outreach will continue. "The tremendous news is that despite the persecution and the burning of churches, there's been amazing growth of Christianity. In fact, we believe the figures show [that nearly 70 percent of people in southern Sudan are now Christian]. This is just the way the Holy Spirit works." The 20-year civil war between the predominantly Arab Muslim north and the mostly African Christian/animist south has claimed more than 2 million lives -- many because of war-induced famine -- and displaced 4 million from their homes. Sudanese Christians have been caught in the crossfire of the civil war with many being tortured, raped and killed. (Mission Network News/Open Doors) WORLDWIDE PRAYER EFFORT TO FOCUS ON CHILDREN AT RISK JUNE 5 Christians around the world will pause on Saturday, June 5, to remember "children at risk." Believers will gather in churches, schools and at home to pray for children on the streets, children abused by their families, children serving in armies, children forced into prostitution, children who are malnourished, and children everywhere who need the help of others who care. For more information visit www.viva.org. (Latin America Mission News Service)

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