The body of a pastor in southern India was found hanging in his home on January 20th, one week after a complaint had been filed about harassment from militant Hindu groups in his area. Gideon Periyaswamy, 43, was pastor of the Maknayeem Church in Adayachery village, Kanchipuram District. He was found in the early morning by two women coming to clean the building. Reports indicate that, while posed to look like a suicide, there are strong indications of murder, including a cut on his neck under the rope.
On February 8th, a court fined seven Christians between 2,500 and 5,000 Sudanese pounds (about $175 to $350 CAD) for resisting the confiscation of a school belonging to the Sudan Presbyterian Evangelical Church in the city of Omdurman. Eighteen other Christians were acquitted. This confiscation follows several other instances of property being seized or destroyed in towns and cities throughout Sudan.
Since her conviction for blasphemy in 2010, Asia Bibi has been in the prayers of thousands of Christians around the world. Convicted of insulting the prophet Mohammed, she faces a death penalty. All appeals to this point have been futile, despite pressure being applied from within Pakistan, as well as by other governments and organizations internationally. For more information on Asia Bibi's case, we encourage you to review the Pakistan Country Report.