Thursday, February 20, 2014

The Global War On Christianity by John Allen, Jr.

One of the most respected journalists in the United States and the bestselling author of The Future Church uses his unparalleled knowledge of world affairs and religious insight to investigate the troubling worldwide persecution of Christians.

From Iraq and Egypt to Sudan and Nigeria, from Indonesia to the Indian subcontinent, Christians in the early 21st century are the world's most persecuted religious group. According to the secular International Society for Human Rights, 80 percent of violations of religious freedom in the world today are directed against Christians. In effect, our era is witnessing the rise of a new generation of martyrs. Underlying the global war on Christians is the demographic reality that more than two-thirds of the world's 2.3 billion Christians now live outside the West, often as a beleaguered minority up against a hostile majority-- whether it's Islamic fundamentalism in the Middle East and parts of Africa and Asia, Hindu radicalism in India, or state-imposed atheism in China and North Korea. In Europe and North America, Christians face political and legal challenges to religious freedom. Allen exposes the deadly threats and offers investigative insight into what is and can be done to stop these atrocities.

“This book is about the most dramatic religion story of the early 21st century, yet one that most people in the West have little idea is even happening: The global war on Christians,” writes John Allen. “We’re not talking about a metaphorical ‘war on religion’ in Europe and the United States, fought on symbolic terrain such as whether it’s okay to erect a nativity set on the courthouse steps, but a rising tide of legal oppression, social harassment and direct physical violence, with Christians as its leading victims. However counter-intuitive it may seem in light of popular stereotypes of Christianity as a powerful and sometimes oppressive social force, Christians today indisputably form the most persecuted religious body on the planet, and too often its new martyrs suffer in silence.”

This book looks to shatter that silence.

My review:
  This wasn't the easiest book to read for a couple of reasons. We don't face much persecution here in the USA, though it is starting to spring up here and there on a much lighter scale than other countries, so it is disturbing and a wake up call we need to read about what is happening to Christians in other countries. Also, there is a lot of information in this book and I felt it could have been written to be more interesting.

  It is still a good book and the author has done a lot of research, and though he isn't too graphic in his descriptions of what Christians are going through in other countries, he presents a very sobering look at what is happening in other countries to Christians in this modern day.

  A book like this should serve as a warning to we Americans to do what we can to fight persecution here. We need to vote for better candidates and judges and pray more for God's mercy and help for America. But it should also cause us to pray for Christians in other countries who are being persecuted. If America keeps going downhill morally, we will face it one day.

About the author:

JOHN L. ALLEN, JR. is the Vatican correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter and a Vatican analyst for CNN and National Public Radio. He is the author of The Rise of Benedict XVI and All the Pope's Men: The Inside Story of How the Vatican Really Thinks. His work has appeared in the New York Times, the Boston Globe, the Miami Herald, The Nation, and many other publications. His Internet column, "The Word from Rome," is considered by knowledgeable observers to be the best single source of insights on Vatican affairs in the English language.

The Global War On Christianity  is available from Random House Publishing.

Thanks to Waterbrook/Multnomah for the review copy.