I try to monitor stories from a variety of countries to see what’s happening to Christians who take their faith seriously. This story from Daily Signal is about a Christian charity worker in Malta. According to Wikipedia, 83% of the population of Malta are Roman Catholic, and only 2% Protestant.
Here’s the story:
Matthew Grech, 33, a trustee of the Christian nonprofit Core Issues Trust, will face trial on Feb. 3, 2023, at the Court of Magistrates in Valetta, along with the presenters of a media outlet, PMnews Malta. Prosecutors claim Grech and the presenters violated Chapter 567, a Maltese law banning “conversion practices.”
Grech told The Daily Signal that Maltese authorities are targeting “ANY DISSENTING OPINION about LGBT” issues, threatening free speech in the name of suppressing “conversion therapy.” He insisted that “there is no proof that people are being forced to ‘become straight’ anywhere on the island” of Malta, which became the first European country to ban “conversion therapy” in 2016.
“You advertised conversion practices and this breaking article 3 (a) (iii) of Chapter 567 of Maltese laws,” the police wrote in a summons on June 29, 2022. The police wrote that Grech violated the law on April 6, 2022. The law defines “conversion practices” as “any treatment, practice or sustained effort that aims to change, repress and, or eliminate a person’s sexual orientation, gender identity and, or gender expression.”
All he did was share his personal testimony about his own experiences dealing with same-sex attractions:
Grech did not advertise any form of “conversion therapy” on that date, according to the transcript. Rather, he told his personal story and advocated for a therapist’s freedom to counsel clients as they would direct, without government intervention.
So, two points about this story.
The first point is about how the secular left treats people who dissent from their views. I remember growing up that conservative Christians were always seen as the ones trying to force their views on others. But, I have never seen a Christian taking a non-Christian to court to force them to agree with some part of the Christian worldview. Someone might respond and object to pro-life laws or pro-marriage laws, but those laws are based on secular arguments and secular evidence. Now we see clearly that it was the secular left that wanted to force their views on others. They are the real intolerant ones, the ones who use force to spread their views.
The second point is just to think about what it means when a police force is monitoring what Christians say and then using their words to charge them with criminal offenses. It shows the importance of Christians being active in policy and politics. Some well-meaning Christians (usually philosophers) like to advocate that Christians should keep out of politics. But as you can see, if Christians keep out of politics, it creates a vacuum for the secular left to come in. I think the motivation of the “keep out of politics” people is simple. It’s easier for them to not put any effort into policy and politics. And they want that laziness to seem “pious”. Don’t listen to them. Unless you want to be brought up on charges just for sharing your faith.