Pope Video: Religious discrimination and persecution
In the first video of the seventh year of Pope Video, Pope Francis asks “How is it possible that many religious minorities currently suffer discrimination or persecution?” Not only is it unacceptable that people would not be granted religious freedom, he says, “it’s inhuman, it’s insane”. He reminds us that religious freedom is not limited to freedom of worship; rather, it is tied to fraternity – “Because either we are brothers and sisters, or we all lose”.
The reality that Pope Francis is addressing is made apparent in the Religious Freedom in the World report published by Aid to ths Church in Need in April of 2021. Religious freedom is violated in a third of the countries around the world, the report says, in which live close to 5.2 billion people. The same document reports that more than 646 million Christians live in countries where religious freedom is not respected. Similarly, since 2020, reports have denounced how many ethnic and religious minorities, especially Islamic ones, do not enjoy full rights of citizenship in the countries where they live.