Skip to content
Catholic Online SHopping 20% off RE-Grand Opening SALE

RE-Grand Opening
FREE Shipping over $49 (lower 48)

Christian Monks expelled from Iraqi monastery as ISIS Islamists fighters ruthlessly sieze it

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
7/22/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

One of the country's best-known Christian landmarks now under control of jihadists

Saint Behnam, a fourth-century monastery run by the Syriac Catholic church near the predominantly Christian town of Qaraqosh in Iraq has been overrun by jihadists. Members of the Islamic State expelled the monks from the monastery this past weekend, sources say.

An image made available by the jihadist Twitter account Al-Baraka news on June 11, 2014 allegedly shows militants of the jihadist group Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) waving the Islamic Jihad flag and holding up their weapons as a vehicle drives on a newly cut road through the Syrian-Iraqi border between the Iraqi Nineveh province and the Syrian town of Al-Hasakah.

An image made available by the jihadist Twitter account Al-Baraka news on June 11, 2014 allegedly shows militants of the jihadist group Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) waving the Islamic Jihad flag and holding up their weapons as a vehicle drives on a newly cut road through the Syrian-Iraqi border between the Iraqi Nineveh province and the Syrian town of Al-Hasakah.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
7/22/2014 (3 years ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: ISIS, monastery, monks, jihadists, seizure


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "You have no place here anymore, you have to leave immediately," a member of the Syriac clergy quoted the Sunni militants as telling the monastery's residents.

The monks reportedly pleaded to save some of the monastery's relics. The fighters refused and ordered them to leave on foot with nothing but their clothes on their backs.

Live Catholic, Shop Catholic -- by going here --

Christian residents from the area say the monks walked several miles along a deserted road and were eventually picked up by Kurdish peshmerga fighters who drove them to Qaraqosh.

Five monks have been expelled from Mar Behnam. Christian families in the area said there may have been up to nine people living at the monastery.

It was just the latest aggressive move by the Islamic State, which in June declared a "caliphate" straddling large swathes of northern Iraq and Syria. The group has threatened the Christian presence in the region spanning close to two millennia.

Hundreds of families have since fled Mosul, a once-cosmopolitan city which is the country's second largest and lies around 10 miles northwest of Mar Behnam.

Homes and belongings have been abandoned after IS fighters running the city issued an ultimatum for Christians to convert, pay a special tax, leave or face the sword.

Families who were forced on the road and leaders of Iraq's Chaldean and other churches said Mosul was now emptied of Christians for the first time in history.

The Jihadist fighters have been forthright in their goals to create a state based on an extreme interpretation of sharia, or Islamic law and have targeted all minorities in the Mosul area.

Other groups such as Shiite Turkmen, Shabak and Yazidis have suffered even more than the Christians, who have largely escaped summary executions since IS swept the region in early June.

The tragedy is immense for the nation's Christian community. Mar Behnam is a major Christian landmark in Iraq and a site where the local community and pilgrims traditionally pray for healing and for the Lord to grant children to their marriages. It is an ancient and revered Christian site.

Now, it is occupied by virulently anti-Christian Islamists.

---


'Help give every student and teacher Free resources for a world-class moral Catholic education'


Copyright 2017 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for AUGUST 2017
Artists.
That artists of our time, through their ingenuity, may help everyone discover the beauty of creation.


Comments


More Middle East

People in Yemen are dying of a foul and dreaded disease as civil war grips the country Watch

Image of Cholera is a killer disease, easily treated, but without care, will kill half of its victims.

A cholera outbreak in Yemen has now infected over half-a-million people, the latest terrible byproduct of a raging civil war that is ... continue reading


TRUE AGAIN! Archaeologists discover site of Biblical town of Bethsaida Watch

Image of Bethsaida is also the location where Jesus fed 5,000 people.

Archaeologists think they have found the lost city of Bethsaida, which was once home to the apostles Peter, Andrew, and Philip. LOS ... continue reading


Biblical story proved true as archaeologists discover Babylonians burned Jerusalem 2,600 years ago Watch

Image of

Archaeologists have found that the Babylonians did burn Jerusalem around 600 B.C. when they conquered Israel. The evidence supports the ... continue reading


Science confirms what Biblical scholars already know - the conquest of Canaan was not a genocide Watch

Image of Science has once again confirmed what Biblical scholars already know.

The Bible tells us that the Canaanites were destroyed by Israelites by God's command. However, scientists have found what Biblical scholars ... continue reading


Can the Church foster peace in the Holy Land? Watch

Image of

As conflict has erupted once again between Israelis and Palestinians in East Jerusalem, the Latin Patriarchal Vicar said that the Catholic ... continue reading


Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.