Be your brother's keeper
By Jim Phelps
We’ve had a friendship with Ryan Mauro and Clarion Project since May 2016. When my wife and I learned they were planning to release Faithkeepers, a film about persecuted Christians and other minorities, we knew we’d want to share it with our readers and all the pastors we know.
I spent a few moments to Ryan talking about the film, praying it would inspire our readership to attend one of our screenings, or to host a screening for their own congregation. Here’s what Ryan had to say about this powerful film:
CSpotlight: Tell us about yourself and your work with Clarion Project.
Mauro: Sure, my name is Ryan Mauro, and I’m the National Security Analyst and Shillman Fellow for the Clarion Project. So, the Clarion Project is an educational organization that teaches people about the threat from radical Islam. It gives a platform to Muslims that are standing up against the threat and are on our side.
We make films, like Faithkeepers, about the persecution of Christians and other minorities by radical Islamic forces. And we do a lot of analysis, education of law enforcement, [and] basically anything that we can think of in order to combat the threat of radical Islam.
CSpotlight: Where can a listener find out more about Clarion Project?
Mauro: The best place to go would be clarionproject.org, and you can also like our Facebook page and get updates that way.
CSpotlight: You’ve mentioned Faithkeepers. In the birthplace of Christianity, in the Middle East, we know that persecution against Christians is escalating beyond measure. How does Faithkeepers address this scenario?
Mauro: Faithkeepers is designed to wake the Church up, because what we’ve found is that there’s still, according to our internal research, a lot of ignorance within the Church about the persecution of Christians – in the Middle East, in the Muslim world – and other minorities.
That still even with all the bloodshed, many do not know it’s happening, and those that know it’s happening don’t relate to it. They see it as just part of the craziness of the Middle East. They don’t understand that it’s a genocide. But most importantly, they also don’t understand that they have a role to play in stopping that genocide and reversing its impact.
So, we focus on teaching people about the scale of what’s going on, how it’s happening, and also mobilizing the Church, so that they’re not just engaged in prayer, but they are also donating to nonprofit organizations that are making a difference with minimal overhead, and hopefully thinking up their own solutions, using their own expertise that they gather from their jobs and their lives in order to come up with new ideas on how to help the situation and do what’s right, which is to help the persecuted minorities, including the Christians, the Yazidis, the Jews, and others in the region.
CSpotlight: Would viewers see Faithkeepers as a promotional piece or an educational film? Or a little of both?
Mauro: Faithkeepers is an education film, and it’s not political. It’s not partisan. This is something that democrats, republicans, libertarians, green party members, everybody can watch and be on the same page. There won’t be any of those fiery Thanksgiving political debates happening once the fill is over.
So, you can feel confident and don’t feel shy about pitching it to your church, to your ministry, to your local political club, college campus, whatever venue where people get together and talk about serious topics is a place that’s suitable to show Faithkeepers, and we will work with you to make that happen.