In Yemen dozens of students have reportedly been detained following the killings of three U.S. missionaries and the assassination of a leading secular politician.
Last Saturday Yemeni Socialist Party leader Jarallah Omar was assassinated. Two days later three missionaries were shot dead at a Baptist hospital. Killed in the incident were hospital administrator William Koehn, purchasing agent Kathleen Gariety and doctor Martha Myers. The three hospital workers were members of the Southern Baptist International Mission Board.
On Wednesday a memorial service was held for them Sanaa, the capital of Yemen.
This is one of the few times Christian missionaries operating in the Muslim world has made it on the radar of the world media.
The last time these missionaries made it to the media’s radar screen was the fall of 2001.
During the US war in Afghanistan, the Taliban detained Dayna Curry and Heather Mercer. They were incarcerated for three months on charges of spreading Christianity. In November, U.S. Special Forces helicopters rescued them from a prison outside Ghazni, Afghanistan.
In October of that year, Islamic militants opened fire on a church built by missionaries in Pakistan, killing 16 Christians. Around the same time, Muslim rebels threatened to execute two missionaries kidnapped in the Philippines.
Well today we’re going to take a look at the phenomenon of Christian proselytizing in the Muslim world.
We’re joined right now on the telephone by freelance journalist Barry Yeoman. Yeoman wrote an investigative piece for Mother Jones Magazine called 'The Stealth Crusade.' Last year, Yeoman attended a private training session of Frontiers, the largest Christian group in the world that focuses exclusively on proselytizing to Muslims.
- Barry Yeoman, freelance journalist and author of the article “The Stealth Crusade” in the May/June 2002 issue of Mother Jones. The article was subtitled: “Inside one Southern university, Christian missionaries are being trained to go undercover in the Muslim world and win converts for Jesus. Their stated goal: to wipe out Islam.”