The mosque is the holiest site for Muslims, while the church has that distinction for Christians. Two major streams within Christianity are the Protestant and Catholic traditions. The latter allows its adherents to worship in any of its many churches around the world because its liturgy is standardized. Only in North Korea, where Christians remain a minority, is it not possible for every citizen to attend a church of his or her choice.
Over 1.8 million Christians call Saudi Arabia home, but there is not a single church in the entire kingdom. Christians in Saudi Arabia are subject to relentless persecution at the hands of both ordinary Muslims and the state. Although Christians in Saudi Arabia face discrimination based on law and social norms, many nonetheless choose to move there in quest of better economic opportunities. This country lacks both religious institutions and venues to worship.
Because Muhammad was born there, Muslims from Saudi Arabia revere Mecca as the holiest city in the world. In Saudi Arabia, Muhammad is the sole prophet revered by Muslims. Because of this, there are always two Meccas in each given area. Over a million Roman Catholics call this Arabian country home, and the locals usually hold a favorable view of the faith and its followers.
Christians in Saudi Arabia are allowed to work and live there legally at any time, but they are not allowed to practice their faith in public. Therefore, Christians in Saudi Arabia need to hold their worship gatherings in complete secrecy.
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