A new Christian church in Kobani, a city along the Syrian-Turkish border, is attracting converts who have seen and experienced brutality at the hands of the militant group ISIS.
“If ISIS represents Islam, I don’t want to be a Muslim anymore,” Farhad Jasim, 23, told NBC News. “Their god is not my God.”
Jasim attends the Church of the Brethren, one of the first Christian churches to appear in the area in decades. His move is a bold one, as those who abandon Islam are often shunned by their families and communities.
Syria also ranks 15th in the top 50 most dangerous nations in which to practice Christianity, according to a report by Christianity Today.
Just 4.6 percent of Syrians are Christian, according to the Aid to the Church in Need, a Catholic charity. Additionally, about 700,000 Christian are believed to have left Syria since the civil war began in 2011.
Jasim, a mechanic, told the news outlet he converted to Christianity late last year. In early 2016, he was jailed by ISIS for not knowing the basics teachings of Islam. According to Jasim, he was tortured by the militant group and forced to read the Quran. – READ MORE