UNITED NATIONS ― In response to the brutal slaughter of Christians in the Middle East by the Islamic State group and other extremist Shiite and Sunni militia — and the thunderous silence with which such horrors have been greeted — Archbishop Bernardito Auza, who serves as permanent observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, cosponsored a presentation to discuss both issues.
The #WeAreN2016 Congress aimed to call on the world to stop the persecution of Christians and other minorities. Other sponsors included In Defense of Christians, the citizen-activism group CitizenGO and the Spain-based religious-liberty advocacy group MasLibres.
Many participants at the conference wore T-shirts emblazoned with a large orange ﻦ ― the “N” in the Arabic alphabet. This refers to the practice of Islamic militants who paint the letter on Christian homes they ransacked. The letter is the initial for Nasrane ― a slur common throughout the Muslim world. It refers to the city of Nazareth, Jesus’ birthplace ― the standard word for Christians used throughout the Muslim world.