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Catholic World News

Churches desecrated in Central African Republic; Christians flee to countryside

May 21, 2013

In recent weeks, Islamist rebels who assumed power in the Central African Republic in March have kidnapped the rector of the cathedral in the nation’s capital as well as the archdiocesan chancellor.

Calling members of the new regime “religious extremists with evil intentions,” Bishop Albert Vanbuel of Kaga-Bandoro decried “the deliberate program of desecration and destruction of religious buildings, especially Christian ones.”

“Throughout the country, the Catholic Church has paid dearly, with many buildings damaged,” the Belgian missionary bishop added.

Aid to the Church in Need reported that some Christians have abandoned their homes for the countryside following attacks.

The nation of 5.1 million is 50% Christian and 15% Muslim; approximately half of the Christians are Catholic. 35% of citizens retain indigenous beliefs.


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  • Posted by: Defender - May. 21, 2013 4:03 PM ET USA

    I'm not sure why people try to appease Islamic militants: they consistently show a complete and utter disregard for property and human life. In the CAR, they might be a minority, but they didn't hesitate to use fear and intimidation to take over the government and will impose Sharia law soon. Christians need to band together and fight this evilness (how's that for Just War?).