Skip to comments.Catholic Priest Arrested and Expelled from Riyadh
Posted on 04/10/2006 7:25:39 AM PDT by marshmallow
He was caught unawares while celebrating mass in a private apartment. He was visiting Catholic Indians in the country. Like all other non-Muslims, pastoral care is denied them. There are around one million Catholics in Saudi Arabia.
Riyadh (AsiaNews) A Catholic Indian priest was yesterday forced to leave Saudi Arabia. He was discovered by the religious police as he organized a prayer meeting in the lead-up to Easter. Arrested on 5 April, he remained in police custody for four days and on Saturday 8th April he left for India. The practice of any religion other than Islam is forbidden in Saudi Arabia. Meetings held privately in peoples homes, among friends, are also banned.
The priest, Fr George Joshua, belongs to the Malankara rite of Kerala (India). His visit to Catholic Indians in the Saudi Kingdom was planned with his bishops permission.
On 5 April, Fr George had just celebrated Mass in a private house when seven religious policemen (muttawa) broke into the house together with two ordinary policemen. The police arrested the priest and another person.
The Saudi religious police are well known for their ruthlessness; they often torture believers of other religions who are arrested.
AsiaNews sources said there were around 400,000 Indian Catholics in Saudi Arabia who were denied pastoral care. Catholic foreigners in the country number at least one million: none of them can participate in mass while they are in Saudi Arabia. Catechism for their children nearly 100,000 is banned.
Often, for feasts like Easter and Christmas, Catholics plan holidays in the Emirates, Bahrain or Abu Dhabi, where at least for once, they are free to attend Mass.
Serious threats made against 31 churches in Indonesia[Catholics and Protestants
Saudi Arabia arrests Eastern-rite Catholic priest for celebrating Mass
Catholic Priest Arrested and Expelled from Riyadh
The font of evil in the world rears its ugly head again.
Hard to believe that we stuck a stick in the eye of the Emirates with the Ports deal as terrorist supporters when they at least allow worship by Catholics and other Christians.
Usually the Saudi Muttawein throw them to jail, rather than deport.
In Saudi Arabia, if you enter their airports and if they find any religious book/picture/thing other than the Islamic ones, they'll tear it up right in front of you, and throw it in the bin, in an extremely insulting fashion.
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Converting muslims is a futile battle...unless it is converting them to compost.
"Hard to believe that we stuck a stick in the eye of the Emirates with the Ports deal as terrorist supporters when they at least allow worship by Catholics and other Christians."
It wasn't Catholics and Christians that stuck a stick in the UAE eye...but no points for guessing who will blame Catholics and Christians for the lack of charity and forgiveness in the world.
Were you expecting anything else than that?
Yes, a few hundred lashes in the land of the proud Saudis.
**This is a bad news/good news story.**
Absolutely. Those doing the persecuting do not realize that their actions are a tremendous stimuli to the growth of the Catholic Church!