Religion Today Summaries - December 16, 2011

Compiled & Edited by Crosswalk Editorial Staff

Religion Today Summaries - December 16, 2011

Daily briefs of the top news stories impacting Christians around the world.

In today's edition:

  • Canada Demands Release of Condemned Pakistani Christian Woman
  • Twenty Haitian Children Still Missing After Orphanage Shutdown
  • Bhutan Christian Evangelist Calls Persecution 'Necessary'
  • Tim Tebow and CURE Building Children's Hospital in Philippines


Canada Demands Release of Condemned Pakistani Christian Woman

Canada's parliament is demanding the release of Asia Bibi, a Christian woman condemned under Pakistan's blasphemy law, Mission Network News reportsBibi, a mother of five, faces the death penalty after being found guilty of blaspheming the Islamic prophet Mohammed. Canadian lawmakers are also calling on Pakistan's government to repeal laws criminalizing blasphemy, which restrict religious expression and disproportionately target religious minorities, said parliament member Phil McColeman. Many Pakistani Christians have been falsely accused under the Blasphemy Law (Law 295a), which makes blaspheming Mohammed a crime punishable by death, and courtrooms full of militants often pressure judges into returning a guilty verdict.

Twenty Haitian Children Still Missing After Orphanage Shutdown

Following the closing of Son of God Orphanage in Haiti in October after six U.S. missionary organizations found that the children were being neglected, abused and trafficked, 45 of the orphans went missing. After weeks of searching, approximately 20 children are still yet to be found, according to reports from the missionaries who uncovered the abuse. Some good news came this week, however, when two children were found -- a young girl, Katia, who had been assumed dead, and another four-year-old child. Government officials and the missionaries are continuing their search efforts and investigation of the situation.

Bhutan Christian Evangelist Calls Persecution 'Necessary'

In a Buddhist region of South Asia, one Christian man from Bhutan spends each day going door-to-door to share the gospel, Baptist Press reports. After a sorcerer cursed his family and he watched his wife, three of his children, his sister and her children die, a Christian told him about Jesus. When his fourth son was miraculously healed from the sorcerer's spell, the man put his faith in Christ. Twenty-three years later, he now lives outside his home country of Bhutan, and makes it a point to share the gospel with everyone he comes in contact with in his area, especially those who are sick, hopeless or who have never heard it before. "I believe my job is to share the gospel," he says. "It is necessary to be persecuted; the work of God becomes greater." He has returned to his village in Bhutan many times to share with his extended family; no one has accepted his message yet, but he constantly prays they will come to faith in Jesus.

Tim Tebow and CURE Building Children's Hospital in Philippines

Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow has led his team to a series of fourth-quarter comebacks this season, but he is also making an impact off the field: His foundation is partnering with CURE International to build a children's hospital in the Philippines, ASSIST News Service reports. The 30-bed surgical facility in Davao City will focus primarily on orthopedics on the island of Mindanao, an area that holds a particular interest for Tebow -- his parents were missionaries to that area and he was born in the Philippines. "The Philippines have always had a special place in my heart," he said. "I'm excited to be a part of this hospital that will bring healing to thousands of children who would not otherwise have access to care." Groundbreaking for the hospital is set for January 2012, and it is expected to open in 2013.

Publication date: December 16, 2011