There is mounting cultural and legal pressure against ministers of the Gospel. A pastor arrested for having ‘unsanctioned’ Bible studies in his home; pastors thrown in jail for organizing a Christian summer camp; street preachers finding themselves on the other side of the law because they do not have a ‘permit’ to preach on that street corner; and a pastor sentenced to six months in prison for engaging in ‘hate speech’ by preaching a sermon in his church on biblical sexuality are but a few examples.
The European Parliament recently declared Christianity as the most persecuted religious group worldwide. This religiously-motivated persecution stretches from Christians and other religious minorities’ communities in the Middle East, where some groups are on the brink of extinction, to groups in Europe, where Christians are often harassed and intimidated. The work that ADF International and our allied lawyer network are doing to protect pastors around the world validates the European Parliament’s assessment. ADF International is working to end anti-conversion laws in India and Nepal; litigating cases against blasphemy laws in Pakistan, and standing beside a pastor punished for having a Bible study in his home in Russia.
We advocate for pastors at the national levels of government and also seek structural, lasting change through advocacy at every major international institution in which we engage. We recognize the importance of addressing the cause as well the effects.