A once-loving Chinese pastor and family man imprisoned 6 years ago by the Chinese Communist Party was found under severe psychological duress by his family members on their last visit to him December 13, and his daughter is seeking to expose the brutal methods by which the regime quells dissidence.
Eight Protestant families were denied access to drinking water by community leaders in Mexico in January for not signing a document renouncing their faith, and 4 more Protestants expelled from their village for refusing to participate in local Roman Catholic festivals in July, as the government denies that any religious persecution is taking place.
On December 1, a band of assailants opened fire on worshipers at a small-town Protestant church in Burkina Faso, an impoverished West African country where the Christian minority is increasingly a target of attacks. The victims included the pastor and several teenage boys; regional authorities attributed the attack to 'unidentified armed men' who, according to witnesses, got away on motorcycles.
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.