Pope Francis hails Christians as 'the martyrs of today'

Pope Francis calls on world to defend modern Christian martyrs in wake of Kenya attacks.

By REUTERS
April 6, 2015 14:48
1 minute read.

Pope Francis calls on world to defend modern Christian martyrs

Pope Francis calls on world to defend modern Christian martyrs

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Pope Francis called on the world to give tangible help to persecuted Christians on Monday, highlighting the plight of people he described as modern "martyrs" after nearly 150 people were killed by Islamist militants in Kenya.

Addressing crowds in bright sunshine at St. Peter's Square in the Vatican after four days of special Easter services, the pontiff listed the evils inflicted on people for their faith and exhorted the international community to act.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


"These are our martyrs of today, and they are many. We can say that there are more of them now than there were in the early centuries. I hope the international community does not look on, mute and inert, at such an unacceptable crime," Francis said.

In Kenya on Thursday, gunmen from the al Qaeda-aligned group al Shabaab targeted Christians for execution after storming the Garissa University College campus, some 200 km (120 miles) from the Somali border.

Kenyan churches have responded to the attack by hiring armed guards, as the massacre resonated throughout the Catholic Church's weekend commemoration of Jesus's crucifixion.

Francis has expressed alarm about the targeting of Christians for their faith, and decried incidents including the decapitation of 21 Egyptian Copts in Libya in February.

During Monday's address, he called for "concrete participation and tangible help to defend and protect our brothers and sisters who are persecuted, exiled, killed, beheaded, solely because they are Christians".



The leader of the world's 1.2 billion Catholics has said the international community would be justified in using military force as a last resort to stop "unjust aggression" perpetrated by Islamic State militants.

The Vatican's official preacher, Father Raniero Cantalamessa, said on Friday there was a "disturbing indifference" among world institutions and in public opinion to the killing of Christians, mentioning the bloodshed in Kenya and Libya.
sign up to our newsletter

Related Content

Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein visiting an IFCJ-sponsored medical clinic in Amman that treats Christian refu
August 15, 2018
Protecting the persecuted

By RACHEL COHEN