25 August 2016
AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook
Geographic areas




  • > Africa
  • > Central Asia
  • > Europe
  • > Middle East
  • > Nord America
  • > North Asia
  • > South Asia
  •    - Afghanistan
  •    - Bangladesh
  •    - Bhutan
  •    - India
  •    - Nepal
  •    - Pakistan
  •    - Sri Lanka
  • > South East Asia
  • > South West Asia
  • > Sud America
  • > East Asia

  • mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato


    » 04/03/2012, 00.00

    BANGLADESH

    Ex imam convert to Catholicism almost killed

    Maria Gomes

    Muslim leader first becomes Presbyterian abroad. After meeting a Catholic woman, he marries her and converts to her religion. Back in Bangladesh, he is totally rejected by his community. Despite the violence and social banishment, his faith remains strong: "I believe in Christ. I welcomed him" for "he is my saviour".

    Dhaka (AsiaNews) - "I believe in Christ. I welcomed him" for "he is my saviour," said Vincent (not his real name for security reasons), a former Bangladeshi imam who is now Catholic and for this reason has endured persecution for a long time in his native community.

    His journey towards conversion began abroad, far from Bangladesh. It led him first to baptism in the Presbyterian Church. After that, he fell in love with a Catholic woman, married her and then converted to her faith. Once they were back in Bangladesh, Vincent and his wife were welcomed by threats and violence. Members of his community beat him almost to death.

    Islam in the state religion in Bangladesh but the constitution does not recognise Sharia and guarantees freedom of worship. This makes it one of the most open Muslim states, where conversions can occur in an atmosphere of general tolerance.

    However, Islam's social and cultural ascendancy is such that in many communities all sorts of pressure is put on people. In some cases, notaries refuse to sign papers testifying to conversions. In other cases, like that of the former imam, people resort to physical and psychological violence.

    After almost two months in hospital, Vincent is back home. But the same Muslims who followed him and held him in high esteem when he was their imam now cannot accept his new "status".

    Beating is also not enough. Other forms of violence can be used. Both husband and wife have been ostracised, forced to move from home to home. Vincent eventually lost his job and now has to do odd jobs to survive.

    Today he is a troubled man. Yet, his community's banishment has not pushed him away from Jesus. He continues to attend Mass now more than ever, and repeat, "I believe in Christ. In him, I was reborn. He is my Saviour."

     

    e-mail this to a friend Printable version










    See also

    30/11/2010 BANGLADESH
    Imam rapes ten-year-old girl
    The 42-year-old man was arrested by police right away. After enduring the violent assault, the girl told her parents everything. Rape charges against the religious leader have been filed. “I want justice,” father says.

    21/05/2016 10:05:00 BANGLADESH
    Bangladesh, a seminar to "update" priests and imams and relaunch dialogue

    The Christian Religious Welfare Trust has organized a seminar for priests and pastors. Simultaneously, the Bangladesh Islamic Foundation will take charge of forming imams. The Dhaka authorities want to promote dialogue among religious, in order to curb Islamic extremism.

     



    10/04/2012 BANGLADESH
    Bangladesh: Muslim by birth, Christian for love of Christ (more than husband)
    Maria and Teresa converted to Christianity to marry. But their marriages have proved unsuccessful: the husband of the first is a drunk and violent, and the second will not work. Both, however, choose to remain faithful to their men and to Christ. "A different love," says Maria, "which makes me happy."

    22/03/2016 12:16:00 BANGLADESH
    Muslim convert to Christianity slaughtered

    The man’s name was Ali Hossain Sarkar and he was 68 years old. In 1999 he converted to Christianity. He was a highly respected health worker and had defended the country in the war for independence from Pakistan. His attackers are unknown, but police fear it is a murder with a religious background. Bangladesh is among the most repressive countries towards Christians.



    07/07/2016 10:17:00 BANGLADESH
    Eid festival marked by bombs and gun battle: 4 killed and 7 wounded

    The attackers threw bombs targeting police in front of a school. At least 200,000 people gathered close by. It is the second terror attack in a week, following the Dhaka massacre. The reported target was the local imam, who is known for his liberal views.





    Editor's choices

    CHINA - VATICAN
    In China-Holy See talks, silence shrouds future of underground priests

    Zhao Nanxiong

    Later this year, all priests must register to receive a certificate that allows them to exercise their ministry. But the request has to go through the Patriotic Association, whose statutes are "incompatible" with Catholic doctrine. Many priests, official and unofficial, now face an enormous dilemma.


    IRAQ
    Alqosh, despite the Islamic State, the Church celebrates the first communion of one hundred children



    On the feast day of the Assumption the whole community attended the function, celebrated by Mar Sako. For the patriarchal vicar, this is an historic moment for the frontier town long threatened by jihadists. The Chaldean primate calls on children to "contribute to the community." In Kirkuk His Beatitude opened a grotto dedicated to Our Lady.


    AsiaNews IS ALSO A MONTHLY!

    AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.
     

    SUBSCRIBE NOW

    News feed

    Canale RSScanale RSS 

    Add to Google









     

    IRAN 2016 Banner

    2003 © All rights reserved - AsiaNews C.F. e P.Iva: 00889190153 - GLACOM®