March 2022 Newsletter
Dear Friends and Supporters,
In the month of March, IDC held several meetings at the U.S. State Department, including a planning conference the Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom. We also met with with the U.S. Commission of International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) to discuss upcoming projects in 2022.
IDC continued its congressional outreach by meeting with Senator Kaine (D-VA), Congressman Jim Banks (R-IN), Congressman Drew Ferguson (R-FL), Congressman David Schweikert (R-AZ), and Congresswoman Stephanie Bice (R-OK) to discuss emerging opportunities and work on legislative initiatives.
Also in March, IDC and The Philos Project led a delegation to meet representatives at the Egyptian Embassy in Washington, DC, in support of Egypt's historic move to appoint Judge Boulos Fahmy as the first Christian to preside over Egypt's Supreme Constitutional Court.
On March 21, IDC issued a press release opposing any potential decision by the Biden Administration to remove the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) from the Foreign Terror Organizations list. According to IDC Executive Director Richard Ghazal, “removal of the FTO designation would constitute an exceptionally dangerous concession to Iran, thereby further endangering the Middle East's remaining Christians.”
On March 30, IDC was invited to deliver a lecture at Georgetown University. Executive Director Richard Ghazal’s lecture focused on the intersection of religion and ethnic identity in the post-Ottoman Middle East. IDC Charles Malik Research Fellow Deacon Chris Nahra's lecture focused on Abrahamic relations from a theological perspective.
In March, IDC kicked-off its Religious Prisoner of Conscience series, which will run through 2022, highlighting the harrowing stories of those imprisoned for their faith—clergy and lay, past and present. The series will feature such figures as Archbishops Hanna Ibrahim and Paul Yazigi (Syria), Jimmy Lai (China), Youcef Nadarkhani (Iran), and Leah Sharibu (Nigeria). The series is aimed at raising awareness of their plight, and encouraging fellow Christians to pray steadfastly for their safety and return home. You can follow this series on IDC's Facebook, Twitter and YouTube channel.
As we continue to celebrate the holy Lenten season, we ask that you pray for our Christian sisters and brothers who face ever-growing persecution and violence around the world. Also, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to IDC's efforts in advocating for persecuted Christian communities in the Middle East and around the world. Our work is dependent on your generosity!
President & Chairman