The fifth anniversary of the setting up of the Malta office of Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) will be marked by a talk on the realities of living the Christian faith today to be delivered by the ACN UK’s national director Neville Kyrke-Smith. This will be held on May  29 at 5.30pm at The Victoria Hotel, Sliema. He will be sharing his personal testimony of Christians who have been under attack and persecuted in their homes for years by the Islamic State (IS) in the Middle East.

Kyrke-Smith was the keynote speaker at ACN Malta’s inaugural event on May 13. It consisted of a major conference entitled ‘Can Christianity survive persecution?’ and focused on realities in the Middle East and Africa. 

ACN in Malta is led by Stephen Axisa, who has worked tirelessly with volunteers, family, friends, priests, sisters and co-workers to tell the story of persecuted Christians in today’s world. Mr Axisa said: “We sincerely hope that over these past five years ACN Malta has created an awareness that Christians today are once again being persecuted in the same cruel manner – if not worse – than they were in the first centuries of Christianity under the Romans or the barbarians.”

Kyrke-Smith referred to the words of St Pope John Paul II, when he visited Malta: “In the footsteps of St Paul.” The former Pope had referred to Malta as a place where Maltese people had “a unique vocation to be builders of bridges between the peoples of the Mediterranean basin, between Africa and Europe. The future of peace in the world depends on strengthening dialogue and understanding between culture and religions”.

Kyrke-Smith is looking forward to meeting many faithful Maltese. Seats can be reserved by calling 2148 7818. 

 “Where they are not physically persecuted, Christians are increasing suffering psychological oppression, intimidation or discrimination, just because of the faith they treasure. ACN wants to show these Christians that they are neither alone nor abandoned, but that there are other Christians who want to support them in a tangible manner and as much as possible,” Mr Axisa added. 

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