US Christian leaders meet with Saudi crown prince

Joel Rosenberg with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz during a meeting between the prince and US Christians in Saudi Arabia. (PHOTO: CBN

Originally published in CBN

Now might not be the best time to visit Saudi Arabia, but a delegation of US evangelical leaders felt it was a risk worth taking. They met with controversial Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman and other Saudi leaders. It was filled with both political controversy and spiritual opportunity.

The visit came following a global firestorm over the death of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, but the planning began a long time ago.

The meeting between evangelical leaders in the US and Mohammed Bin Salman had been in the works for months, but it came to pass when the delegation made a visit here to the United Arab Emirates.

“There‚Äôs a lot of people who would say this is the wrong time to go to Saudi Arabia and meet with the leadership there,” author Joel Rosenberg told CBN News. “I understand that criticism, but I disagree.”

While realizing the potential for controversy, the group felt the opportunity to help Christians there was more important.

“Given the fact that we care about the people of Saudi Arabia, Christianity in the Arabian Peninsula, the desire to see more freedom of worship, even Christian churches being allowed to be built, this all seemed important to us to do,” Rosenberg said.

“When people ask, ‘why would you go, why would you meet’, I mean as a Christian called to be a peacemaker, as an advocate for freedom of worship, as an advocate for tolerance and peaceful coexistence, my answer is how can I not?” Rev Johnnie Moore said.

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