A Christian teacher in Pakistan has been given a choice of converting to Islam or being killed after he spoke out about hate preaching.
43-year-old Musa Atique has been a primary school teacher in a school in Kasur, in the east of the country, for seven years, teaching English, Urdu, Social Studies and Islam, which is a compulsory subject.
However, recent reports suggest that the government of Pakistan has proposed changes to the school syllabus, which now requires compulsory learning of the Quran and Islamic prayers.
The British Pakistani Christian Association, who spoke with Mr Atique, says that some teachers took this opportunity to preach hatred to children about minority groups in Pakistan, such as Christians.
Mr. Atique told the BPCA that there has been an increase in bullying of minority children since the new classes began, and he also overheard two teachers using derogatory terms like “kafir”, meaning infidel, and saying that Christians are supporters of Jews and spies for America. He reported the incident to the headteacher but nothing was done.
Details emerged in March that one Muslim teacher came into Musa Atique’s classroom and beat him up in front of his students, calling him names. He was threatened with death if he continued to speak out about the language and content of Islamic classes.
Since then children have been encouraged to shout abuse and spit at him.
Later that month the same teacher told Mr Atique to convert to Islam or face being killed.
Musa Atique told the local police, but he was beaten again for contacting the authorities and human excrement was found at his door.
Mr Atique is now seeking help from the BPCA. He said: “People were brewing a plot to lay blasphemy charges against me. I was being shunned by my fellow teachers but some Christians warned me of the impending blasphemy charge.”
Mr Atique has now left the school and makes some money from private tutoring lessons
Wilson Chowdhry from the BPCA said: “Life for Christians will reach an all-time low, now that the Pakistani Government has directed schools to include Quranic studies in their school assemblies and hold Islamic prayers in all schools. The process is easy to abuse and permits fanatical religious zealots to [indoctrinate] vulnerable young minds with their … ideology.”
- Pray for Christian teachers such as Musa Atique, in Pakistan as they face abuse and threats because of their faith. Pray for their protection, and for wisdom as the grapple with the new school requirements.
- Pray for Christians across Pakistan, in all walks of life, as they are often singled out for abuse and live with the threat of blasphemy charges.
- Pray for an end to the blasphemy laws in Pakistan that are often used just to settle disagreements and as revenge against Christians. Pray for the government to revoke these laws and allow freedom of worship for all people in Pakistan.
- Pray for a move of the Holy Spirit over this land and through the schools, that many people, young and old, with encounter the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and acknowledge Him as Lord and Saviour.
Judges 2 vs 18: “… for the Lord would be moved to pity by their groaning because of those who persecuted and oppressed them.”
Source: http://www.premier.org.uk/News/World, http://www.persecution.org