After 183 years as a Roman Catholic nation, Bolivia officially became a secular country in 2009, when a new constitution, promulgated by the administration of its first indigenous leader, President Evo Morales, dropped any mention of the historic faith of its Spanish colonial rulers, bolstering the position of its pre-colonial religions.
International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that on July 7, Pastor Ramon Rigal, leader of Iglesia de Dios en Cristo, was sentenced to one year of heavy labor and house arrest for choosing to homeschool his children. Rigal has openly stated that his decision to homeschool was largely attributed to his Christian faith.
The first half of 2016 has seen church demolitions in Cuba gather pace as the government crackdown on freedom of religion or belief (FoRB) on the island continues. The authorities have also begun to confiscate 1,400 Assemblies of God (AOG) churches that were earmarked for seizure in 2015, according to Christian Solidarity Worldwide.
Twenty-seven evangelical Protestant families in Chiapas state, Mexico, will finally have their access to water and electricity returned after local authorities had agreed two years ago to respect their minority religious freedoms in the village of Union Juarez, Trinitaria Municipality.
International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that in the early morning hours of February 15, the day Pope Francis arrived in the state of Chiapas, a minority Christian church located in Zincacantan, in the state of Chiapas, Mexico, was set ablaze, leaving hundreds without a place of worship. Although too early to definitively report on the identity of the perpetrators, the state government has been notified of the crime.
Local Mexican leaders recently raided the farmland in the village of Mariano Matamoros, Chiapas State, as part of an ongoing operation to expel a small Christian community from the Catholic-majority country.