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Muslims have destroyed a Pentecostal  Church in Shaikhpura, Pakistan

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Shaikhpura: Pentecostal shrine in Hakimpura in Shaikhpura district of Punjab province of Pakistan was attacked by a mob of militant Muslims. Following the attack on Friday, the church was left empty, which destroyed a wall and cross of the Trinity Pentecostal church. Behind the attack were armed Muslims led by property developer Abbas and Ali Shan with anti-Christian slogans demanding the return of the land purchased for the shrine.

The former owner was demanding that the 101-square-meter vacant land be sold back to the shrine. Believers say the attack is blasphemy and needs action.

There are more than sixty families under the Trinity Pentecostal Church. Abbas and seven others have been charged with blasphemy by the police, but no arrests have been made so far. Usually when such cases occur, the police intervene and rescue the victims. The Christians had staged a protest demanding the arrest of the attackers.

Last Friday, the attackers, led by Awan Abbas, a property developer, and Ali Shan, came armed with guns. They entered the church around noon, taking advantage of the fact that the building was empty due to the coronavirus-related lockdown.

Shouting anti-Christian slogans and showing contempt for the place of worship, they attacked the walls and broke a cross, desecrating the building.

He explained that the community was involved in a dispute over land duly bought last year near the church to accommodate the growing community.

After selling it, the former owner of the empty plot of 101 square metres now wants it back, perhaps to get a better deal.

The Church filed a report of the attack with police and launched a blasphemy case against Abbas and seven other men who vandalised the church.

News of the incident quickly spread across the country, causing anger and sadness among Christians. The community wants Prime Minister Imran Khan and his government to provide greater protection to Pakistan’s minorities and demand the perpetrators be brought to justice.

Boota Masih, a local Christian, told  that the group of thugs, after attacking the walls and the cross, challenging anyone who dare oppose them, fled as soon as they heard police was arriving. “Not only was the cross broken, but our hearts were crushed too,” he said.

Tariq Masih Gill, a member of the Punjab Provincial Assembly, visited the church. “The cross that was desecrated has great importance and value in both Christianity and Islam,” he said. “The culprits have not only dishonoured our faith, but also our national flag, which also represents minorities.”

Provincial Human Rights and Minorities Affairs Minister Ijaz Augustine also visited the church. He asked police to take immediate action against the perpetrators, without favouritism or discrimination.

Senior officers at the local police station said they were fully committed to the case, and would bring the culprits to justice soon.

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ഭൂകമ്പം ഫിജിയെ പിടിച്ചുകുലുക്കി, റിക്ടർ സ്കെയിലിൽ 6.0 രേഖപ്പെടുത്തിയ ഭൂചലനം

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സുവ: ദ്വീപ് രാജ്യമായ ഫിജിയിൽ ഭൂചലനം. റിക്ടർ സ്‌കെയിലിൽ 6.0 തീവ്രത രേഖപ്പെടുത്തിയ ഭൂചലനത്തിൽ നാശനഷ്ടങ്ങൾ ഉണ്ടായതായി റിപ്പോർട്ടില്ല. 398 കിലോമീറ്റർ ആഴത്തിൽ പ്രകമ്പനം അനുഭവപ്പെട്ടതായി യുഎസ് ഭൗമശാസ്ത്ര കേന്ദ്രം അറിയിച്ചു. ലെവൂക്ക നഗരത്തിന് 340 കിലോമീറ്റർ കിഴക്ക് മാറിയായിരുന്നു പ്രകമ്പനം. പ്രാദേശിക സമയം രാവിലെ 11.35 ഓടെയായിരുന്നു ഭൂചലനം അനുഭവപ്പെട്ടത്. സുനാമി മുന്നറിയിപ്പുകളൊന്നും നൽകിയിട്ടില്ലെന്ന് അധികൃതർ അറിയിച്ചു. ഭൂചലനം ഉണ്ടായ വിവരം ജർമ്മൻ ജിയോസയൻസ് റിസർച്ച് സെന്ററും സ്ഥിരീകരിച്ചിട്ടുണ്ട്.

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Archaeologists discover rare 2,000-y-o oil lamp in Jerusalem’s City of David on Pilgrimage Road

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The Israel Antiquities Authority announced the discovery of a rare oil lamp, with its wick still preserved, from under the foundation of a building erected on Jerusalem’s famed Pilgrimage Road soon after the destruction of the Second Temple almost 2,000 years ago.

The IAA researchers believe the bronze lamp, shaped like a grotesque face cut in half and estimated to be from the late first century or the early second century CE, was put in the foundation of the building in Jerusalem’s City of David for good fortune, The Times of Israel reported.

“This half of a lamp, and in fact half a face, which was discovered in the City of David, is a very rare object, with only a few discovered in the whole world, and is the first of its kind to be discovered in Jerusalem,” Yuval Baruch of the IAA was quoted as saying.

“It is possible that the importance of the building, and the need to bless its activity with luck by burying a foundation deposit, was due to its proximity to the Siloam Pool, which was also used in the Roman period as the central source of water within the city,” IAA archaeologist Ari Levy told The Jerusalem Post.

Speaking to Haaretz, Levy explained, “Foundation deposits, in general, go back to the dim reaches of antiquity. It was accepted in construction in general, to bring luck and symbolic defense of the building — and to cast fear and awe on attackers. Its significance was highly symbolic, not functional.”

Haaretz said the lamp featured a goaty male half-face complete with (half a) satyr’s beard and a horned forehead.

Only one other such lamp has ever been found in an archaeological context — and that was in Budapest, according to Levy.

Experts believe that Pilgrimage Road, where the building had been erected, is the path ancient Jews walked to reach the Temple Mount three times a year — in the festivals of Passover, Shavuot and Sukkot.

“The street was built during the period of Governor Pontius Pilates,” Levy said. “It was inaugurated around the year 30 CE and it was used for about 40 years until the Temple was destroyed in 70 CE.”

Baruch added: “Decorated bronze oil lamps were discovered throughout the Roman Empire. For the most part, such oil lamps stood on stylish candelabras or were hung on a chain. Collections around the world contain thousands of these bronze lamps, many of which were made in intricate shapes, indicating the artistic freedom that Roman metal artists possessed.”
Sources:Christian Post

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