European churches colour red for persecuted Christians


European Union


Lambeth Palace in the United Kingdom. Photo X, Archbishop of Canterbury

Last Wednesday, European churches and other buildings drew attention to their persecuted fellow-Christians. By lighting up red, they want to highlight the “many violations that minorities suffer in particular.”

Several media reported recently that persecution of Christians is growing worldwide. Also in Europe, the number of hate crimes is rising. According to the Dutch website of the initiative of Red Wednesday, more than 335 million people suffer persecution because of their faith.

Hungarian embassy to the Holy See. Photo X, Eduard Habsburg

One of the buildings that lighted up in red was the Hungarian embassy to Vatican City. Hungary is known for its support to persecuted Christians and even has a State Secretariat for the Aid of Persecuted Christians.

The office from the Hungarian President, Katalin Novák. Photo X, Katalin Novák

Also, the office of the Hungarian President, Katalin Novák, Sándor Palace, was illuminated by red lights. The President points out on X that “Christianity is the world's most persecuted religion”, and that “Hungary tries to help the victims.”

Palazzo Montecitorio in Italy. Photo X, Camera dei deputati

In Italy, the building of the Chamber of Representatives coloured red in support for persecuted Christians and other minorities. The Chamber supports the “Solidarity Day”, it announced a few days beforehand.

The Palazzo della Farnesina, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Italy. Photo X, Farnesina

The Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs also participated in Red Wednesday. Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani was behind the initiative.

The Colosseum in Rome. Photo X, Sebastián Sansón Ferrari

The well-known Colosseum in Rome was illuminated in red as well on Wednesday. It participated in initiatives for persecuted Christians in other years as well.

The Austrian Parliament building. Photo X, Martin Litschauer

In Austria, the Parliament building lit up in red. With it, the Parliament wants to “express solidarity with all those who are victim of discrimination or violence because of their faith”, MP Martin Litschauer writes on X.

The interior of the Cathedral of the German diocese of Regensburg. Photo X, Bistum Regensburg

The Cathedral of the diocese of Regensburg in Germany also illuminated its interior on Red Wednesday. The diocese invited a Pakistani Archbishop to tell his story on the day of solidarity with persecuted Christians.

The Holy Anthony of Padua church in Kortenhoef, the Netherlands. Photo X, Rob de Sain

In the Netherlands, several Roman Catholic Churches joined the Red Wednesday initiative. In total, about 150 churches participated, the website Kerk in Nood states.

The Church of Our Lady in Maastrict. Photo X, Fijne Zondag

The Church of our Lady in Maastricht was one of the participating churches. In the city in the Southern part of the country, 8 churches joined, RTV Maastricht reported prior to Wednesday.

Red Wednesday is an English initiative. Photo X, London SE1 Community Website

The initiative of Red Wednesday was started by Aid to the Church UK, a British organisation that stands up for persecuted Christians. Since the starting date of the initiative in 2016, churches and organisations have joined from all over the world.

School children prepare decorations for Red Wednesday. Photo X, St Anthony's Primary

Red Wednesday does not only consist of red lighting to draw attention to the situation of persecuted Christians. Also, other decorations refer to the same issue. School children, for example, create red decorations and use them in a lesson about persecution.



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