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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Are Christians really being persecuted in the USA?

A California couple has been fined by the city of San Juan Capistrano for holding Bible studies and religious gatherings in their home, which has some wondering about the future of religious freedom in America. Of course, this story has created a fury of comments about how it is proof that Christians are being singled out and persecuted in the USA.

But change the religion of the people in the story and see if it still appears to be persecution.

Imagine if you lived on a block with a Muslim family that held a meeting twice a week at their house that had between 20-50 people show up every time, and had to deal with the traffic, parking and foot traffic issues that accompanied these meeting, is it possible that after months and years of this occurring some people on the block might object? Especially, when there is a municipal code on the books in the city that prohibits the activity that is happening? Can you honestly say that might not start to get annoying after awhile?

What is persecution? Let's take a look at the definition of the word.

Definitions of persecution (n)

per·se·cu·tion [ pùrssə kysh'n ]

- the persecuting of somebody: the subjecting of a race or group of people to cruel or unfair treatment, e.g. because of their ethnic origin or religious beliefs

- suffering of persecuted people: the suffering felt by persecuted people

So, it is cruel or unfair to require that Christians abide by the same laws as everyone else in the city? If not, then they are not being persecuted.

Additional articles on the story also provides additional information.

From the story: "Stephanie Fromm hosts a Bible study on Wednesdays that draws about 20 people, while Chuck Fromm’s Sunday-morning gathering draws as many as 50. "

"Chuck and Stephanie Fromm paid $200 in fines after receiving at least two citations from the city of San Juan Capistrano. They appealed the tickets to a hearing officer who sided with the city, leading to the August 31 lawsuit in Orange County Superior Court."

The wife in the story also admits that neighbors had complained to her directly.

What if the neighbors had complained to the Muslim family in my analogy and they told them that it was too bad, they were going to continue with their meetings, even though it was disrupting the neighborhood. Do you think it is possible someone might file a complaint with the city at that point?

Christians seem to believe that anytime someone complains about them, they are being persecuted, regardless of the circumstances.

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