Cardinal Kurt Koch, president of the
Pontifical Council for Promoting
Christian Unity at the Vatican. (AP)
Speaking at the International Ecumenical Congress in Schwabisch Gmund, Germany, just east of Stuttgart, Catholic Cardinal Kurt Koch said that although Christians are being persecuted in at least 25 countries, much of the media are ignoring this persecution, and he added that the Islamic State is a “satanic terrorist organization.”
As reported by the Catholic News Agency (Katholische Presseagentur) in Germany, Cardinal Koch, who is the president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity at the Vatican, said he believes Christianity is the most persecuted religion in the world.
“In about 25 countries Christians are under threat of life and limb,” according to the cardinal, and it is a “strange phenomenon” that this persecution does not earn much media coverage.
He also criticized the notion that attacks against Christians were largely a thing of the past, in the 20th Century, and said there are many martyrs today.
He then noted that one of the groups martyring Christians is the Islamic State, which the cardinal said is a “satanic terrorist organization.”
Coptic Christians, just prior to being beheaded
by Islamic State executioners. (YouTube)
The Islamic State, in addition to persecuting Christians, Yazidis, and Jews in the Middle East, also attacks Muslims who do not support its ideology. The attacks in Paris on Nov. 13, in which at least 129 people were killed and 352 wounded, were carried out by the Islamic State.
Prior to being posted to the Vatican in 2010, Cardinal Koch was the bishop of Basel, in Switzerland.
Koch is an orthodox cardinal who has rejected the idea from some German and American bishops that divorced and remarried Catholics should be allowed to receive Communion.
In March of this year, Cardinal Koch dismissed that idea, comparing it to some of the Christians who adapted their teachings to conform with the ideology of the Nazis.