Religious leaders from around the nation are calling upon all Christians to allocate a minute of silence on Sunday, February 22, followed by a prayer reflecting upon the memory and for the grieving families of the 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians murdered by the hands of ISIS terrorists.
A variety of denominational and cultural faith leaders have joined in the efforts, including:
- Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, President of The National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference (NHCLC)/Conela;
- Dr. Russell Moore, President of The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC);
- Mark Burnett and Roma Downey, Award-Winning Television Producers;
- Gabe Lyons, Founder of Q Ideas;
- James Robison, Founder of LIFE Outreach International;
- Johnnie Moore, Speaker, Commentator and Author of "Defying ISIS;"
- Mathew D. Staver, Esq., Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel; Dr. Mark Williams, General Overseer of The Church of God;
- Dr. Doug Beacham, General Superintendent of The International Pentecostal Holiness Church;
- Dr. Glenn Burris, President of The Foursquare Church; and others.
"The Christian faith is the place where conviction marries compassion and truth joins hands with love," said NHCLC/Conela President Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, who serves as a representative voice for the more than 100 million Hispanic Evangelicals throughout the world.
"We stand convicted and convinced that terror and intolerance cannot, and will not, extinguish the light of God's grace, truth and love," Rodriguez continued. "We hope leaders around the world will join us in honoring those who have lost their lives, praying for those suffering, and repudiating all acts of terror."
A short video available to be played in worship services and gatherings prior to Sunday's minute of silence is available for download in both English and Spanish at http://21martyrs.com/.
"Persecution of Christians wakes a slumbering Church," said Q Ideas President Gabe Lyons. "This call to remembrance and prayer reminds us that the blood of the martyrs has always been the seed for a revived Church. May we remain sober-minded and fall to our knees in prayer for God to stir our hearts to obedience."
Additionally, these leaders are urging President Barack Obama and the United States Congress to do more to specifically address the persecution of Christians by ISIS, Islamic totalitarianism and regimes in the Middle East; and call upon the United Nations to convene a summit on Christian persecution around the world.
"In a time when the world is on fire with the threat of Islamic jihadist extremism and religious persecution, the church must be the people who know how to engage our neighbors with the gospel that reconcile," said ERLC President Dr. Russell Moore. "At the same time, our government must do its duty, and Christians are right to pray for swift action against this terror. We stand in solidarity with our persecuted brothers and sisters, as the people of the cross."
For more information, visit http://21martyrs.com/.