Segments in this Video

Death Sentence for Blasphemy (01:11)


In 1998, a Christian was sentenced to death for blasphemy against Islam. A Catholic bishop went to the courthouse and shot himself in protest.

Pakistani Struggles (01:13)

Pakistan captures headlines for geopolitical and internal conflict, but how do the struggles affect Pakistanis' lives? They debate whether their country should be secular or Islamic.

Status of Pakistani Christians (01:27)

On the whole, Pakistan's 3 million Christians freely practice their religion. Some face discrimination; others are able to integrate.

Divisions in Gojra (02:04)

Train tracks divide Christian from Muslim sides of Gojra, Pakistan. We meet a man accused of desecrating the Quran, which led to chaos and bloodshed.

Attack on Gojra Christians (01:54)

In response to a rumored Quran desecration, extremist Muslims attacked Gojra Christians, burning their section of town; eight died.

Gojra After Violence (03:18)

The Christian colony in Gojra has been rebuilt. Members of a household that lost seven family members tell their story, Their home is a monument to resistance and stands in protest of the killers' continued freedom.

Extremist Muslim Minority (00:59)

Pakistan's conflict is not Muslim versus Christian; rather, a minority has hijacked Islam, as Christians recognize.

Christian Festival (02:54)

A large gathering of Christians celebrates a religious festival in Pakistan, led by visiting American preachers.

History of Christianity in Pakistan (02:16)

St. Thomas is said to come to Pakistan. British rule introduced Christianity; missionaries built schools, hospitals and Bible societies.

Christian and Muslim Harmony (02:01)

A conference for dialogue between Christians and Muslims in Pakistan provides entertainment for disabled children. An elderly nun talks about her convent's good relations with Muslims.

Ambivalence of Christian Pakistani (01:06)

A Christian tour guide at a Pakistani mosque says he loves Pakistan, but isn't sure it loves him.

Becoming an Islamic Republic (02:14)

At partition, most Hindus left Pakistan for India, but Christians stayed; in a speech, Pakistan's founder promises plurality, but Pakistan constitutionalized religious discrimination.

Marginalized Christians (02:45)

Christians are poor in Pakistan; many live in slums. They lack political power and are reluctant to speak openly

Zia-ul-Haq (02:13)

In the 1980s, Pakistan's military dictator Zia-ul-Ha's use of religion to dominate politically completed the ideological hijacking of the Pakistani state. His 1986 speech announces the enforcement of Sharia law.

Blasphemy Law (02:24)

Zia-ul-Haq banned blasphemy against the Prophet. The law created the environment that allowed the Gojra attacks. Claims of blasphemy are an effective weapon in personal conflict with non-Muslims.

Bishop's Suicide Protest (02:08)

Bishop John Joseph shot himself outside a courthouse where a Christian was sentenced to death for blasphemy. A cousin wishes he had been alive to deal with the Gojra attacks.

Family's Regrets over Suicide (01:53)

The late Bishop John's sister shares her sorrow over his protest suicide. A relative regrets his suicide, saying it did not achieve anything for Christians.

Politics of Blasphemy Law (01:55)

Many Pakistanis would consider repeal an attack on Islam. Human rights activists insist it must be repealed, though this is not politically possible.

Culture and Law (02:48)

Some Pakistani Christians believe discrimination runs deeper than the blasphemy law. The law also strikes Muslims. Pakistani Muslims have long followed Sufi, which is now under attack from more orthodox Islam.

Segregation (01:49)

Muslims and Christians have become segregated in Pakistan starting in the 1980s. We visit Pakistan's largest Christian colony, which provides safety in numbers.

Church, State and Pakistan (03:08)

A Christian Pakistani businessman believes Christians are falling behind Muslims because of unsound financial practices. The church takes on a political role, since the state marginalizes Christians.

Departure of Middle-Class Christians (02:00)

Many urban, integrated, middle-class Goan Christians, of Portuguese origin, left Pakistan in response to increasing religious tensions, leaving the Christian community poorer.

Goan Musical Culture (01:59)

As Goans have left Pakistan, their once influential music has died out. A member of a new generation of Goan musicians dismisses the importance of politics and does not plan to leave.

Television Station (02:43)

A new television channel that seeks to bring the Gospel to Pakistanis, hoping to give marginalized Christians a voice. It focuses on good news, but may downplay problems.

Signs of Hope for Reconciliation. (02:39)

Christians struggle to deal with Bishop John Joseph's death. An Islamic cleric and another bishop together honor and remember him on the anniversary of his death; the cleric is constructing an educational hall in his honor.

John Joseph's Legacy (01:03)

A man says John Joseph's protest raised awareness and emboldened Christians to challenge Pakistan's blasphemy law. After the Gojra incident, two brothers were murdered after being charged with blasphemy.

Credits: The Crescent and the Cross: Can Christians Coexist with Muslims in Pakistan? (00:49)

Credits: The Crescent and the Cross: Can Christians Coexist with Muslims in Pakistan?

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The Crescent and the Cross: Can Christians Coexist with Muslims in Pakistan?

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3-Year Streaming Price: $169.95



This topical documentary tells of Pakistan’s relatively unknown three million Christians. In 1998, Bishop John Joseph shot himself in the head in protest against the blasphemy law. The law is wide-ranging and demands punishments up to the death penalty for anyone deemed to have insulted Islam. While many Christians are able to practice their faith freely, the law remains a vital means of Pakistan’s constitutional discrimination today. Nevertheless, most Christians in Pakistan realize it’s not a matter of Muslim versus Christian. There are positive signs of Muslims and Christians living peacefully together. Yet so long as the powerful extremist groups keep a stranglehold on the majority religion, Pakistan’s Christian population will be worrying about their future. (55 minutes)

Length: 56 minutes

Item#: BVL50022

ISBN: 978-1-61753-202-3

Copyright date: ©2010

Closed Captioned

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