There is something about distance, numbers and repetition that I have always found peculiar in terms of evoking reaction. I find this is especially true when thinking about anti-religious persecution.

Published in Register Columnists

OTTAWA – Canada is being urged to give asylum to Asia Bibi and her family after Pakistan’s Supreme Court cleared her of blasphemy charges, resulting in widespread rioting by Islamic extremists.

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OTTAWA – Constitutional lawyer Albertos Polizogopoulos will represent an 83-year old Catholic priest who was arrested Oct. 24 for violating Ontario’s abortion bubble zone law.

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VATICAN – Sharing the same roots as their Jewish brothers and sisters, Christians cannot be anti-Semitic and must work to ensure anti-Semitism is banned from society, Pope Francis said.
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BEIJING, China – As part of an ongoing crackdown on religious practice in the country, Chinese authorities demolished two Catholic Marian shrines this week. The move comes just one month after the Chinese government signed an agreement with the Vatican regarding the appointment of bishops.
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HONG KONG – The recent agreement between the Vatican and China is a step towards the “annihilation” of the Catholic Church in China, Cardinal Joseph Zen, former bishop of Hong Kong, wrote in a New York Times op-ed published on Wednesday.
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The new Quebec government’s proposed assault on religious freedom by barring public wearing of overt faith markers is worrisome enough.

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VANCOUVER – Dehumanized. Spat on by a professor. Attacked. Assaulted.

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MEXICO CITY – An auxiliary police officer was shot dead at the Mexico City home of Cardinal Norberto Rivera Carrera in what authorities described as an unsuccessful attempt at robbing the retired churchman.
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HANOI, Vietnam – Vietnam has freed a well-known Catholic blogger and rights activist jailed two years ago for posting anti-government material on social media and forced her into exile in the United States.
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OTTAWA – A proposed law by Quebec’s new government that would ban religious symbols is a clear violation of fundamental rights, said Montreal’s archbishop and Canada’s former Ambassador of Religious Freedom.

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The State of Alabama has had a controversial relationship with the Ten Commandments. Not so much its teachings but its physical representation.

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OTTAWA – Experts warned religious freedom is at risk in Canada as it is no longer seen as a fundamental right but something that can be trumped by vague “charter values” and partisan politics.

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WASHINGTON – Debate continues about whether the Vatican's provisional agreement with China will improve relations between the Chinese state and members of religious groups, which have had a long history of conflict.
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The phrases “hot ticket” and “religious freedom forum” appear only infrequently in the same sentence, especially on Parliament Hill where the operative word is secularism, secularism and more secularism.

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Comment

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Charles Lewis: We must open eyes to anti-Christian bigotry

Most of us take for granted the safety and peace of our houses of worship so when that is broken it is akin to being punched in the gut, Lewis writes.

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Pope's homily

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