Berwick Anglican Church is located in the heart of the Casey growth corridor.
Friends will know that this area is significant to me, as my first curacy (Anglican assistant minister’s position) was in Cranbourne which is also in the Casey growth corridor.
This south east part of outer Melbourne is one of the fastest growing areas in Australia.
The population of the shire is 247,000 people, but that is projected to grow to 380,000 over the next 25 years. That will make it bigger than our country’s capital city Canberra (assuming little growth there!).
Seven Christians have been burnt alive, including three women and two children, when their houses were set on fire during attacks by Muslim demonstrators.Following a violent attack on residents of the Christian village of Korian on 30 July Link, we have received news of further incidents of anti-Christian violence in the nearby town of Gojra, District Faisalabad, Punjab province, on Saturday 1 August. Homes were looted and at least 50 houses were burned down, as a Muslim mob threw petrol bombs and fired indiscriminately.
Pray for Christians being physically persecuted by Hindus in India.
On Saturday 23 August the Hindu leader Laxmanananda Saraswati and four of his associates were assassinated. Saraswati, who was a senior figure in the nationalist VHP (Vishwa Hindu Parishad), had called for India to become a Hindu nation, and strongly opposed the conversion of Hindus to Christianity. The police and state officials have blamed the attack on suspected Maoist rebels, and Christian leaders in India have clearly condemned it. But the VHP and its allies alleged in inflammatory speeches that Christians were responsible, and they called a protest that rapidly escalated into violence.
The media have very limited access to Orissa at present, and reports from the region are still somewhat confused. But it is already clear that damage to property is extensive. Scores of church buildings have been demolished, and hundreds of homes destroyed. Other Christian institutions, including schools, offices and prayer houses, have been vandalised, looted or burned. Buses and other vehicles have been torched.