Saturday, 16 February 2008

Prayers Needed For Algerian Christians

Middle East Concern reports that Father Pierre Wallez, sentenced to a year's imprisonment for praying with Christians in Cameroon, is the first victim of legislation approved in March 2006. The legislation prohibits anyone from leading a religious ceremony anywhere without permission from the government in Algeria.

Algerian Archbishop Henri Teissier told Vatican Radio: "the most surprising thing is that the conviction was issued simply because the priest visited a group of Christians in Cameroon. He had not celebrated Mass, but was only joining them in a prayer. It was December 29, a little after Christmas." A tribunal has now modified the sentence to parole. But Christians in Algeria are concerned that their religious freedom is under threat.

In recent months Christians in Algeria have faced increasing harassment and a hostile campaign in the media. In the same trial that sentenced Fr. Wallez, a Muslim doctor was sentenced to two years' imprisonment for using medications supplied by the Catholic Church's charity, Caritas.

Middle East Concern say that Algerian Christians have requested readers' prayers.

Mantilla-twitch to Fr. Justin.

1 comment:

Paulinus said...

Search the Amnesty site using the term 'Wallez'. Guess what you'll find? Nil, nada.

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