Thank you, CMI supporters! Because of you, CMI was able to fund a program to fight hunger in Pakistan. Brother Naeem Sabir of the Sahiwal Church of Christ in Sahiwal, Pakistan, arranged the distribution of cooked food for the needy brothers and sisters there, and then he went door to door to distribute the rest.
Pakistan is still reeling from last year’s deadly floods, which put a third of the country underwater. The circumstances are dire. Thousands lost everything and were left homeless as their homes and all their belongings were washed away. Additionally, rising inflation – 35.4 percent in March, the highest rate since 1973 – makes it harder than ever for families to put food on the table.
In Pakistan, more than 90 percent of people identify as practicing Muslims. Although Pakistan was founded in 1947 with the intention of creating a tolerant and egalitarian country, Pakistani Christians have continued to endure substandard living conditions, and in recent years, the community has been the target of escalating attacks due to growing intolerance. Christians have faced persecution, targeted killings, forced conversions, mob violence, and destruction of their places of worship and graves by perpetrators emboldened by the absence of meaningful action from the authorities and widespread impunity.
The severe discrimination and attacks against Christians have led the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom to designate Pakistan as a country of “particular concern.” The Christian minority has also been heavily persecuted under Pakistan’s blasphemy laws, which carry a possible death sentence for anyone found guilty of insulting Islam.
Many Pakistani Christians have been forced into sanitation work – a hazardous occupation – as a result of centuries-old discriminatory practices that limit their prospects. most Christian sanitation workers are treated as social outcasts. People generally avoid shaking hands, making friends, and even eating or drinking with them. The term “churha,” which officially translates to “sweeper,” is now seen by many as derogatory but is still casually used as a slur for Christians, regardless of their profession. This kind of emotional and psychological abuse begins early on, sometimes in classrooms, and has severe ramifications on the well-being of Pakistan's Christian children.
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