Analyst highlights persecution

first_imgChristians are the most persecuted religious group in the world today, according to the International Society for Human Rights, which says 80 percent of all religious acts of discrimination target Christians. In his talk Monday night titled “The Global War on Christians,” CNN’s senior Vatican analyst John Allen highlighted countries experiencing heavy persecution of Christians today and debunked myths about such conflicts while arguing that the American Church can take a bigger role in addressing these heinous acts. Allen’s address was the second keynote address of the “Seed of the Church” conference on Christian martyrs. “We are talking in my opinion about the most dramatic, most compelling, most urgent Christian narrative of our time,” Allen said. Allen said according to the Pew Forum, persecution of Christians occurs in 133 countries. According to Aid to the Church in Need, about 150,000 Christians have been killed in religious conflict each year of the 21st century. “In the hour that we are going to be together tonight, somewhere on this planet, 11 Christians are losing their lives,” Allen said. “This number is not only astonishing but obscene.” One place Allen described as an epicenter of Christian persecution is Iraq. Even though this region was an integral part of the early Church, Iraq’s Christian population has shrunk from between one and a half and two million in 1991 to fewer than 450,000 today, Allen said. “A Church that took two millennia to construct has been gutted essentially in two decades,” he said. Since American intervention in Iraq has exacerbated sectarian tensions, putting Christians at greater risk for persecution, Allen said the American Church has an obligation to assist Iraqi Christians. “Given what we profess as Catholics and given the responsibility we bear as Americans, the fact that the situation facing the Church in Iraq is not a … top-of-the-brain concern for the Catholic Church in the United States is nothing less than a moral scandal,” he said. “Our failure to apply our last best efforts to meaningful gestures of solidarity with our brothers and sisters in Iraq is quite simply inexcusable.” Allen said most people falsely believe Christian persecution can only come from regions where Muslim extremism is prevalent. “If somehow tomorrow, radical Islam were to disappear, the threats to Christians would hardly be gone,” he said. “What we face is a bewildering cocktail of threats.” Some threatening groups include radical Hindus in India, nationalists in Turkey and even radical Christians, Allen said. Christians can also be persecuted in countries such as Mexico where they are the overwhelming religious majority, he said. Another myth about Christian persecution is it is a political issue, Allen said. “If we are going to take a clear-eyed look at the global war on Christians, we cannot try to see it through the funhouse mirror of secular politics,” he said. Most of all, Allen said Americans can support persecuted Christians abroad merely by being mindful of their situation. When he interviewed Christian Syrian refugees in Lebanon during Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to Beirut, Allen said they all agreed on how Western Christians could help them. “Do you want to know the number one must popular answer by far they gave me that they said would make the most tangible and appreciable difference to them?” he said. “The answer was, ‘Don’t forget about us.’ … You and I cannot solve the problems of the world. We can’t make the violence in Syria go away tomorrow, but we can try to find creative ways to broadcast the message that we have not forgotten them and that we are paying attention.” Contact Tori Roeck at vroeck@nd.edulast_img read more

49ers’ trade protects Richard Sherman from getting clocked by Trent Williams again

first_img (KHQ) Richard Sherman has embraced confrontation throughout his career and usually gotten the better of his rivals.One feud the 49ers cornerback did not completely win was his 2013 skirmish with then-Redskins offensive lineman Trent Williams, who San Francisco acquired Saturday from Washington in a move that should protect him from future bell-ringing. MORE: Trent Williams trade grades for 49ers, RedskinsAfter Sherman’s Seahawks beat the Redskins in a wild-card clash, Sherman took a strong right hand to the face from Williams, somewhat overshadowing his positive defensive performance that night.”What are you gonna do, boy?” Sherman asked the 318-pounder near midfield.”I’m gonna punch you in your face.””Well do it then.”Williams proceeded to do exactly what he said he would do. To Sherman’s credit, he stayed on his feet. Still, he seemed too stunned to react.Reminder: New 49ers OT Trent Williams once punched current 49ers CB Richard Sherman in the face after a game.— Joseph Hoyt (@JoeJHoyt) April 25, 2020The incident brought direct parallels to a classic quote given by a soon-to-be stabbed man that has since become a widespread meme.Don’t ask for what you can’t handle.center_img Sherman acknowledged his history with Williams on Saturday after learning he would be teammates with the lineman. He seemed to admit Williams got the better of him in 2013, if that wasn’t already clear.Lmao 😅😅 @TrentW71 welcome…. I’m gonna need a rematch— Richard Sherman (@RSherman_25) April 25, 2020While Sherman often antagonizes opponents, he’s been a steadfast supporter of teammates throughout his career. He took on a vocal leadership role in his first season with the 49ers last year and publicly defended quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo from critics.So, it’s unlikely Sherman will allow his past with Williams get in the way of locker room positivity. If anything, the acquisition of Williams will keep his face safer than it’s been in the past.last_img read more

The tale of timeless Wasim Jaffer

first_imgAdvertisement assNBA Finals | Brooklyn Vsbem83vWingsuit rodeo📽Sindre Emd( IG: @_aubreyfisher @imraino ) 5m4yWould you ever consider trying this?😱3irlfp68Can your students do this? 🌚f14Roller skating! 1jzSee more on YT⬇️⬇️⬇️See morec3gzu4Body tricks that only special people can do pt-1neorlHow though? 🤔😂#AdrenalineJunkies2lnjzaA visualization of how Karma works vr1kiidPowered by Firework Former India opener and domestic cricket stalwart Wasim Jaffer talks about cricket, IPL and more in an exclusive interview with Sports India ShowAdvertisement Considered by many as one of the finest batsmen ever to play for Mumbai and India, Wasim Jaffer is an uncomplicated fellow, much like his batting technique.Jaffer’s name is taken in the same breath as Rahul Dravid and Cheteshwar Pujara by the purists’ of the game. His ability to bat for long hours, in addition to possessing a solid technique and watertight defence-Jaffer is often referred to Indian cricket’s marathon man.Advertisement After all, not many can boast of a first-class career spanning for 24 years, but for Jaffer, his passion for the game knew no limits. In his distinguished career, the 42-year old Jaffer bagged many accolades that will make players with much more international experience look pale in comparison.“Playing for this long has been a matter of great pride for me, it gives me a lot of satisfaction. But a more important thing for me has always been the success of the team that I’m playing for. I always wanted to contribute to the team’s winning cause, records come in the process,” Jaffer who retired from all forms of cricket this year said.Advertisement Wasim JafferJaffer’s fitness mantraThe testament to Jaffer’s longevity in domestic cricket is explained by his never-ending appetite to improve as a batsman. Having made his first-class bow in 1996-97 season, Jaffer plied his trade for more than two decades.Apart from the being the highest run-getter in Ranji Trophy, Duleep Trophy and Irani Cup, Jaffer holds a distinction to have scored two double tons in first-class cricket after turning 40.“Once you are an athlete, you have to make sure that you maintain a certain fitness level. The earlier part of my career, going to the gym was not a regular thing. But then while playing for India, we were introduced to foreign trainers with more exposure and expertise. Working on fitness with Adrian Le Roux really helped me prolong my career in many ways,” Jaffer recalls.Success and records in Ranji TrophyAfter plundering runs on a domestic circuit on a regular basis, a call-up to the national setup was inevitable, something that Jaffer looks back with mixed emotions.It is fair to say that Jaffer’s international career was short-lived, which was only a shadow of his domestic exploits. Nonetheless, he sparkled with a few spectacular innings for India between 2000 and 2008, scoring 1944 runs with five tons to his name.“Definitely I would’ve loved to play more Tests. Maybe I was not as consistent on the international level but I had my opportunities to make the opening spot mine. There was a good competition for the opening batsman’s position and I’m happy with my stint, but I could’ve done better,” Jaffer says, letting out a bitter-sweet emotion.However, during his relatively limited time in the Test Arena, Jaffer is remembered for pivotal centuries on tours of South Africa and the West Indies. He made a career-best 212 against the WIndies in trying conditions at St Lucia.Known for his stylish strokeplay, especially the cover drives and his backfoot play, Jaffer’s batting was poetry in motion for many. On flat and placid Indian tracks, tall-standing Jaffer was a nemesis of the bowlers, tormenting them with his patient knocks. Jaffer attributes his backfoot play for the early learnings in gully cricket.“Growing up in Mumbai, the monsoon was a major factor during the season. More often than not, we used to practice with the rubber balls on matting-wickets, which helped me with my backfoot strokes,” Jaffer informs.Domestic cricket coachingRemembered for his feats in domestic cricket, particularly in the Ranji Trophy, Jaffer is the first and only man to score 12,000 runs in Ranji Trophy, India’s premier domestic competition.The lanky right-handed opening batsman spent most of his career playing for Mumbai, and towards the fag end also represented Vidarbha, winning two titles with them.After such an accomplished career, one would think Jaffer has had enough of cricket, but the 10-time Ranji Trophy winner has no intention to stop anytime soon as he makes a move in the coaching fraternity. As he wades off into the sunset of his playing career, Jaffer is eyeing an equally meaningful coaching stint as he prepares to take over the Uttrakhand Cricket team.“I am becoming the head coach any team for the first time. From whatever I’ve picked up from my team-mates with the Indian team and on the domestic front, I’ll look to pass it on to the next generation. It is a very challenging and exciting prospect to coach a Ranji team and I’m looking forward to it,” Jaffer enthused with an air of expectation.Next-generationThe 42-year old has had a company of illustrious team-mates like Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Sourav Ganguly, Anil Kumble etc and for Jaffer, there’s no better feeling than coaching, mentoring and moulding the next crop of players.“In my last five-six years as a player, I’ve mentored youngsters and had a couple of stints as a batting coach. It is something that I enjoy immensely and it gives me a feeling of moulding something meaningful to help youngsters and see them grow,” Jaffer adds.When pressed upon to single out the next big thing in Indian cricket, Jaffer says more than the outcome, the process needs to hog the limelight.“The likes of Yashasvi Jaiswal, Sarfaraz Khan and Kartik Tyagi have great potential to be the next superstars. However, they will have to keep working hard on their physical fitness and mental attributes to add to their natural talent that they possess,” Jaffer suggested.Kings XI Punjab batting coachThe seasoned campaigner, who featured in 31 Tests and a couple of ODIs for India, will have a taste of the glitz and glamour of the Indian Premier League (IPL) with the Kings XI Punjab.In his new job as their batting coach, Jaffer would be working with the likes of KL Rahul, Chris Gayle and Glenn Maxwell and Mayank Agarwal. Anil Kumble, the head coach and director of cricketing operations of the franchise was keen to have Jaffer on board for the new role. And for the 42-year old Jaffer, IPL presents life in a different state of affairs.“IPL is an important tournament for BCCI on many fronts. It’s a great platform for young Indian cricketers to hon their skills in the company of outstanding international cricketers. In addition, it gives a huge financial lift for the BCCI, which in return improves domestic cricket as well.” Jaffer opined, shedding more light on the flow of things.For as much as Wasim Jaffer’s legendary numbers will be remembered, so will be his dignified demeanour and gentle conduct.ALSO READ:Read why Sourav Ganguly just prevented Ravindra Jadeja from playing in Ranji trophy finals!  Advertisementlast_img read more