1. NOT BY CHOICE

    Gaza Christians: Forced Conversions

    Adel Hana / AP Photo

    Christians gathered at a the Greek Church of Gaza on Tuesday for a sit-in protesting the persecution of Christians in Gaza by Islamists. Specifically, the group was there on behalf of five Christians they say were kidnapped by Islamists who aimed to convert them to Islam. A day earlier, a protest had been held at the same church to demand that Hamas return the five who were allegedly kidnapped. While family members of the young man, a woman and her three children in question say that a Hamas lawmaker is holding them against their will, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights insisted, via a statement on Tuesday, that the group has seen their family members and are not being forced to change religions—they did so voluntarily. “If my son is not kidnapped, why don’t they just let him go home with me,” asked the mother of the 25-year-old missing man. “My son was brought up as a Christian. His love of Jesus is strong enough to keep him a Christian. He cannot change his beliefs all of a sudden.” Officials maintain that the people are under police protection while staying with a Muslim family.

    Read it at Los Angeles Times