Middle East Action Team

Nowhere are the threats to religious communities more visible than in the Middle East. The absence of religious freedom and government protections have led to genocide of religious minorities and massive displacement across much of the region. For any lasting peace to be secured on a regional or even local level, religious freedom is crucial. The ability to live together with those of another faith, or even who share a different interpretation of your own is necessary. We are working to address the ideas that are driving violence and strengthen communities to preserve pluralism where it is at risk.

Director: Kent Hill
Projects: Under Caesar's Sword


"Under Caesar’s Sword" is a three-year, collaborative global research project that investigates how Christian communities respond when their religious freedom is severely violated. Research will be centered around three core questions:

  • How do Christian communities respond to repression?
  • Why do they choose the responses that they do?
  • What are the results of these responses?

The findings of this research project are disseminated and used to inform advocacy and assistance work on behalf of Christians and other religious minorities across the globe.

The Under Caesar's Sword project is a joint initiative of the Religious Freedom Institute, the Center for Ethics and Culture at the University of Notre Dame, and the Religious Freedom Project at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University.

To learn more about the project visit: www.ucs.nd.edu


Director: Kent Hill

Kent Hill joined the RFI after six years as Senior Vice President at World Vision, one of the largest faith-based relief and development organizations in the world. He also served for eight years as Assistant Administrator for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), responsible for U.S. foreign assistance to Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, and, subsequently, all USAID health programs worldwide. Earlier in his career, Dr. Hill was President of Eastern Nazarene College, and President of D.C.'s Institute on Religion and Democracy. In 2010, as a Vice President at the John Templeton Foundation, Hill, along with Tom Farr, conceived Georgetown's Religious Freedom Project and secured funding to launch the project. Dr. Hill has published a book on Christianity and the Soviet Union. His Ph.D. is from the University of Washington.