September 7th, 2010
07:24 PM ET

Runaway Christian convert granted U.S. residency

A runaway who said her father threatened to kill her for converting to Christianity from Islam has been granted permanent residency in the United States, her lawyer told CNN on Tuesday.

Rifqa Bary, 18, who was an undocumented immigrant until recently, left her family in Columbus, Ohio, in July 2009 and took refuge in the home of a minister in Orlando, Florida. The girl was later moved into foster care after she said in an affidavit that her Muslim father had threatened her after finding out about her conversion. Her father denies the allegation.

Bary had said in court that she could not reunite with her parents and needed permission to live in the United States.


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Filed under: Immigration • Ohio
soundoff (17 Responses)
  1. Evangelist

    as long as im an american and a serving christian with open arms i welcome her!

    September 7, 2010 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  2. jwealand

    Beautiful !!

    September 7, 2010 at 8:28 pm | Report abuse |
  3. JanZ

    Praise the Lord! Rifqa has turned 18, she's been healed of late stage cancer, and now she has the freedom to live as she chooses in America forever. I'd say, Our God loves Rifqa! You go girl!

    September 8, 2010 at 12:53 am | Report abuse |
  4. ybs

    Had she become an agnostic or atheist, would she still be granted U.S. residency?

    Equality my *ss! All religions are the subjugation of self AND others. 🙂

    September 8, 2010 at 1:02 am | Report abuse |
    • Joseph

      You raise a very interesting point; unfortunately, she likely wouldn't have been had she chosen any other faith, or a lack of faith.

      September 8, 2010 at 3:06 am | Report abuse |
    • An American Christian

      Choosing to be agnostic or atheist is not "choosing a faith."
      Behold, he is the lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. Have mercy on us.
      Peace be with you!

      September 8, 2010 at 7:25 am | Report abuse |
    • Geoffmag

      Your point is well taken. It would be interesting to see what all the holy rollers around here would say if she "chose"to be a Wiccan?(:-))! I am happy for the girl that she gets to live. Hopefully her medievel slug of a father will get deported. It just seems to me a shame that she had to embrace one form of irrational delusional inorder to escape another

      September 8, 2010 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  5. deborah

    Victory sweet victory...
    Thank you Lord!
    Rifqa may you be blessed with health and peace

    September 8, 2010 at 2:02 am | Report abuse |
  6. Grace

    As a Christian, I question the girl's motives. Was she brainwashed by the much older pastor in FL who befriended her online? Religion is not a football game. There is no victory, no winners or losers. If she had been a Christian who converted to Islam in her country and felt threatened, would she have been granted asylum here? Don't hold your breath on that one....and by the way. Jesus is not an animal, he is not a fish, a lamb or anything other than the son of God and of a human woman. This is not 100 A.D. Rome, this is 2010, time to put away myths and JanZ nothing was ever said about Rifqa having late stage cancer. So come on now, quit overdoing it. Jesus talked about you hypocrites, Scribes and Pharisees, the moneychangers, etc. Repent and follow the Lord in truth. Quit being cafeteria Christians.

    September 8, 2010 at 8:00 am | Report abuse |
    • An American Christian

      Why would you belittle a bible verse derived from His word?

      John 1:29 (King James Version)
      The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
      God be with you.

      September 8, 2010 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
    • An American Christian

      Grace, I truly know God and am very happy that by repenting with a true heart and a sincere conscience that I am given salvation, through His son, our Lord Jesus. I just want everyone to know about the Trinity before they are facing death. Hell is very real, and if you are dying, you become very serious about repenting and confessing your sins to God. I am overjoyed when I hear of someone who has received salvation from the sacrifice of God's only son.

      September 8, 2010 at 9:24 am | Report abuse |
  7. sagewy

    I am glad she is safe but I would like to know how an illegal islamic family came to stay in the USA in the first place.

    September 8, 2010 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
    • An American Christian

      Read for yourself:

      September 8, 2010 at 10:37 am | Report abuse |
  8. Martha Tapia

    Good end to the story. Glad she was given residency to stay in this wonderful country. Now let's send the rest of the family back where they came from.

    September 8, 2010 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse |
  9. JanZ

    FYI: Rifqa was diagnosed with late stage uterine cancer. She had 3 surgeries to remove the cancer. She chose not to have chemo. Her parents wanted to force her to have chemo, but the judge said Rifqa could refuse the chemo. She was prayed for and knew that Jesus healed her. The doctor ran tests and said her body was cancer free. That's not going overboard, it's God.

    September 8, 2010 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • saltedwithfire

      Did you get that information from the Lorenz's or from her directly? Where did you hear that? I am ecstatic to hear that!

      September 8, 2010 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
  10. JanZ

    I got the info from Rifqa's website, the associated press, and fox news online. The drs and parents wanted Rifqa to undergo 45 weeks of chemo. She refused because Jesus healed her. She will have regular appointments to be sure she remains cancer free. I think she is a very courageous young woman and I pray that she continues to be an example and inspiration to others.

    September 9, 2010 at 7:32 am | Report abuse |