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Did the U.S. Close Its Doors to Persecuted Christians in 2023?

This month, World Relief published an updated report in collaboration with Open Doors USA, exploring how persecuted Christians worldwide have been impacted by changes in U.S. immigration policy.

Since the original report was published in 2020, findings show that the number of persecuted Christians has risen to more than 360 million, which is roughly one in seven Christians globally.

As Christians, we believe that all people have the right to religious freedom and that religious minorities of any sort — not just those who share our Christian faith — should be protected.

While the report focuses primarily on the effects policy changes in the U.S. have had on persecuted Christians, various other persecuted minority groups have also been largely shut out of resettlement in recent years.

Matt Soerens, World Relief’s VP of Advocacy and Policy says:

“We know from the Scriptures that Jesus takes the persecution of his people personally: on the road to Damascus, he asks Saul — who had brutally persecuted Jesus’ earliest followers but had never met Jesus himself — ‘why do you persecute me?’ (Acts 9:4) Today, most Christians in the U.S. recognize the great blessing it is to live in a country with strong protections for religious liberty — where, though in some settings we may be mocked or disliked, very few of us live in fear of losing our lives or being forced to flee our homes because of our faith in Jesus. We rightly take pride in our country’s long legacy of offering refuge to those persecuted for their faith in other parts of the world. However, as this updated report shows, that legacy — and the well-being of tens of thousands of brothers and sisters in Christ — could be at risk unless we as a nation recommit ourselves to a robust refugee resettlement program and to due process for those seeking asylum. And as Americans exercise another vital freedom, to elect our president and other leaders of our nation, I pray that candidates of all backgrounds will stand for religious freedom by supporting robust refugee resettlement and asylum policies.”

Download the report to learn more.

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