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Why Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill Made Christian History in Cuba

(UPDATED) ISIS persecution of Christians prompts first meeting between Catholic and Orthodox primates since 1054.
Why Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill Made Christian History in Cuba
Edgar Jimenez / Flickr | Larry Koester / Flickr

Update (Feb. 12): World Watch Monitor offers a summary of the history-making meeting between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill in Cuba's Havana airport.

Gathering for the first time in nearly 1,000 years to jointly address the record levels of modern-day persecution ...

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Pastor of China's Largest Church Jailed for Protesting Removal of 1,500 Crosses

Christian unity growing as government-approved churches no longer immune from persecution.
Pastor of China's Largest Church Jailed for Protesting Removal of 1,500 Crosses
Wikimedia

Until last month, Gu Yuese was the senior pastor at China’s largest government-approved Protestant church. In addition to his responsibilities at the Communist nation’s first megachurch—the 10,000-member Chongyi Church—Gu also held a leadership role ...

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British Evangelicals Worried about Sunday School, Youth Group Raids

Plans to regulate extremist Muslim madrassas would also affect youth ministry, warns EAUK.
British Evangelicals Worried about Sunday School, Youth Group Raids
Bigbirdz / Flickr

Last summer, British prime minister David Cameron laid out a five-year plan to combat growing Islamist extremism.

But ambiguous language in one of the policies meant to regulate extremist Muslim schools has British evangelicals raising the red flag.

Calling a proposal ...

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Court: Turkey Failed Malatya Martyrs and Must Pay Back Their Families

But it's not quite the good news Turkish Christians have been waiting for since 2007.
Court: Turkey Failed Malatya Martyrs and Must Pay Back Their Families
Morning Star News

The Turkish government neglected its duty to protect three Christians who were tortured and killed in 2007, a Turkish court ruled on Tuesday.

The Malatya Administrative Court has ordered the government to pay damages to the victims’ families, ruling that the Turkish ...

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Morocco Declaration: Muslim Nations Should Protect Christians from Persecution

In Marrakesh, hundreds of Muslim leaders release modern update to Muhammad’s Charter of Medina.
Morocco Declaration: Muslim Nations Should Protect Christians from Persecution
Martin Varsavsky / Flickr

For years, Texas megachurch pastor Bob Roberts has been buildingrelationships with Muslims. Last year, after Franklin Graham argued that the US government should ban Muslims from immigrating to America, the NorthWood Church leader joined Muslim leaders in denouncing the comments. ...

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Iran Frees Pastor Saeed Abedini after Three Years in Prison

(UPDATED) Idaho pastor part of prisoner swap on Religious Freedom Day amid wife's Daniel-inspired fast.
Iran Frees Pastor Saeed Abedini after Three Years in Prison
ACLJ

Saeed Abedini has finally been freed.

The Iranian-American pastor from Idaho, held for more than three years, was exchanged as part of a prisoner swap in which Iran released four people and the United States released seven.

"It is confirmed," his wife Naghmeh ...

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Kenya Puts Rules to Rein In Prosperity Preachers on Pause

Widespread protests prompt president to send proposed regulations back to the drawing board.
Kenya Puts Rules to Rein In Prosperity Preachers on Pause
Stuart Price / Make It Kenya

One of Africa’s strongest attempts yet to prevent problematic behavior among its mushrooming churches has hit the brakes.

In 2014, Kenya’s attorney general banned new churches amid a “miracle-faking” spree. Githu Muigai began 2016 by proposing a ...

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North Korea Gets Competition: The Top 50 Countries Where It's Now Hardest To Be a Christian

(UPDATED) Hermit Kingdom losing lead as modern persecution hits record high, according to 2016 World Watch List.
North Korea Gets Competition: The Top 50 Countries Where It's Now Hardest To Be a Christian
Open Doors

2014 was the world's worst year for the persecution of Christians in the modern era. Until 2015 surpassed it.

The 2016 World Watch List (WWL) from Open Doors analyzes how African countries now outnumber Mideast countries on the list, affecting far more Christians numerically ...

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Ukraine Debates Celebrating Christmas Twice over Crimea

A global roundup of the politics of Christmas in 2015.
Ukraine Debates Celebrating Christmas Twice over Crimea
Sofiia Kovryga / Shutterstock

Some countries banned Christmas. Ukraine is debating celebrating it twice.

Following the lead of the Russian Orthodox Church, Ukraine celebrates Christmas on January 7. But after the annexation of Crimea in February 2014, relations have been fraying between the Russian ...

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The 10 Most-Read Stories of the Persecuted Church

China removes 400 crosses, the US deports Iraqi Christians, and ISIS beheads dozens.
The 10 Most-Read Stories of the Persecuted Church

Here are CT's most-read stories about the persecuted church in 2015.

10) Why Christians Are Fleeing One of Africa's Oldest and Largest Christian Homelands

Beyond the search for a better life, evangelicals and Orthodox in Ethiopia increasingly share even more.

9) After ...

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The Top 20 Most-Read Gleanings of 2015

The 50 countries where it's most difficult to be a Christian, 'The Boy from Heaven' retracts his story, Elisabeth Elliot passes through gates of splendor, and more.
The Top 20 Most-Read Gleanings of 2015

What do ISIS, Tullian Tchividjian, YWAM, and Family Christian Stores have in common? All were subjects of the most-read Gleanings posts of 2015.

Here are the top 20 stories that kept readers clicking:

20) Kenji Goto, Christian Journalist, Beheaded By Islamic State

ISIS releases ...

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North Korea Sentences Canadian Megachurch Pastor to Life in Prison

(UPDATED) Toronto pastor who made hundreds of humanitarian trips dodges death penalty.
North Korea Sentences Canadian Megachurch Pastor to Life in Prison
Light Korean Presbyterian Church

North Korea has sentenced the pastor of one of Canada's largest churches to life in prison.

Hyeon-Soo Lim, leader of 3,000-member Light Korean Presbyterian Church in suburban Toronto, has been held by North Korea since January, and allegedly confessed in August to conspiring ...

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Beyond Fight or Flight: $1 Million Reveals How Christians Cope with Persecution in 30 Countries

Under Caesar's Sword conference in Rome explores strategies in 100 beleaguered communities.
Beyond Fight or Flight: $1 Million Reveals How Christians Cope with Persecution in 30 Countries
Under Caesar's Sword

From demolished church crosses in China to beheaded believers in Libya, the persecution of Christians regularly drew international media attention this past year.

It also caught the attention of researchers, who spent three years and $1.1 million compiling "the world’s ...

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What Pope Francis Told the Central African Republic's Evangelical Seminary

Pope discusses 'ecumenism of blood' and assassination attempt on CAR Evangelical Alliance leader.
What Pope Francis Told the Central African Republic's Evangelical Seminary
World Watch Monitor

During his first trip to Africa, Pope Francis preached the “ecumenism of blood” at an evangelical seminary in the Central African Republic (CAR).

The landlocked sub-Saharan nation, ravaged by a three-year crisis, is struggling to overcome divisions between Christians ...

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Is Germany’s Refugee Crisis a Muslim Mission Field?

Christian denomination of 3 million says 'strategic mission' to convert Muslims goes against 'the spirit' of Jesus.
Is Germany’s Refugee Crisis a Muslim Mission Field?
Montecruz Foto

Up to one million refugees are expected to arrive in Germany by end of this year, hoping to gain asylum in the European Union’s largest country.

Many are arriving from Muslim-majority countries, including Syria, Afghanistan, and Iran. But while German churches have ...

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