Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

8/14/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The violent attacks that are sweeping across Northern Iraq cannot but awaken the consciences of all men and women of goodwill to concrete acts of solidarity

The violent attacks that are sweeping across Northern Iraq cannot but awaken the consciences of all men and women of goodwill to concrete acts of solidarity by protecting those affected or threatened by violence and assuring the necessary and urgent assistance for the many displaced people as well as their safe return to their cities and their homes.- Pope Francis

That horrible black flag, a symbol of a reign of death and terror, is flying in many places now, as the army of ISIS militants advances, leaving a trail of carnage in their wake. These terrorists are routinely cutting off heads and sticking them on poles while they shout their slogans with enthusiasm and smile. They purport to honor God while they unleash a reign of evil. They engage in the worst human rights abuses, and claim they are doing it in the name of God. What kind of 'god' would ever compel human beings to act with such evil? Certainly NOT the true God.

That horrible black flag, a symbol of a reign of death and terror, is flying in many places now, as the army of ISIS militants advances, leaving a trail of carnage in their wake. These terrorists are routinely cutting off heads and sticking them on poles while they shout their slogans with enthusiasm and smile. They purport to honor God while they unleash a reign of evil. They engage in the worst human rights abuses, and claim they are doing it in the name of God. What kind of "god" would ever compel human beings to act with such evil? Certainly NOT the true God.

Highlights

VATICAN CITY (Catholic Online) - Finally, the attention of the whole world is turned toward that territory illegally carved out of Iraq, Syria and Lebanon which is now called The Islamic State, or Caliphate, by the militant extremist Jihadist Muslims who follow Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, or Caliph Ibrahim.

Finally, the true brutality and utter evil being inflicted by this growing threat, not only too that region but to the world, is being exposed in much of the main stream media. These terrorists who call themselves the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS) are evil, period.

They have beheaded hundreds of innocent people, killed children, crucified former Muslims who freely chose to follow Jesus Christ, destroyed dozens of Christian churches, burned sacred manuscripts and sacred art, and sent hundreds of thousands of Christians and other religious minorities fleeing for their lives in a reign of bloodshed and terror.

The deluded madman who claims to be a descendant of Mohammed, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, or Caliph Ibrahim, issued an ultimatum last month which led to this ongoing slaughter. Christians in that part of the former territory of Iraq, Syria and Lebanon were to forcibly convert to Islam, face the sword, flee the country or have their property seized and pay the tax levied against dhimmis.

Not only Christians, but other religious minorities, are now subjected to the most vile and horrific violation of fundamental human rights that the world has seen in some time. For example, the plight of the Yahzidis, a sect which descends from an eclectic blend of Zoroastrianism, an ancient Persian faith, blended with elements from other religious traditions, have drawn the attention of a watching world.

SAVE Iraqi Christians from Genocide --

This despicable ultimatum was broadcast from loudspeakers and placed on the internet weeks ago. It has now been heard around the whole world: "We offer them three choices: Islam; the dhimma contract - involving payment of Jizya; if they refuse this they will have nothing but the sword."  The ones who are issuing the ultimatum smile while they tell of their plans to fly their black flag over the White House.

The historic facts are clear and irrefutable. Christian tradition traces the planting of the Christian Church and the Gospel of Jesus Christ in this ancient land now unjustly occupied by a new Caliphate all the way back to the missionary efforts of the Apostle Thomas.

Christians have an undeniable claim to live freely on this land - and the RIGHT to practice their faith. Their claim precedes the very arrival of Islam. They have fundamental human rights which are being ruthlessly denied by a barbaric terrorist movement whose poisonous ideology is spreading and threatening the entire world.

Christian homes were marked for seizure and destruction by these Jihadist terrorists. They took an axe to the ancient tomb of Jonah and destroyed it with a kind of mad abandon. They ripped down the Sacred Cross from St. Ephrem's Cathedral and replaced it with their dreaded black flag.

That horrible black flag, a symbol of a reign of death and terror, is flying in many places now, as the army of ISIS militants advances, leaving a trail of carnage in their wake.

These terrorists are routinely cutting off heads and sticking them on poles while they shout their slogans with enthusiasm and smile. They purport to honor God while they unleash a reign of evil. They engage in the worst human rights abuses, and claim they are doing it in the name of God.

What kind of "god" would ever compel human beings to act with such evil? Certainly NOT the true God.

Initially, there was only minimal news coverage of this utter horror - and a muted global outcry. Fortunately, that has now changed. Now, finally, even the main stream media admits, there is a genocide of Christians underway in this new Caliphate which has occupied territory which was once a part of Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

These mad terrorists have amassed massive stockpiles of both weapons and cash. They threaten to blow up up a crucial dam - and the consequences will be dire. We face a serious global crisis. The question is - what will be the response of the rest of the world? 

As demonstrated by the treatment of the Yahzidis, the Christians are not alone in facing the evil wrath of these bloodthirsty terrorists. Their blood is now mingled with other religious minorities such as the Yahzidis, ShabaIts, and Kurds.

Over 40,000 Yahzidi men, women and children are now trapped in the mountains. They have no way to escape a sure and certain mass execution without intervention from the international community. How could anyone watch the footage of those men, women and children trying to board that helicopter bringing food - shown on every newscast - and not feel the utter urgency of this hour. 

Heroic Church leaders are speaking out with urgent clarity. We offer below the full text of a letter which was delivered to the Secretary General of the United Nations on August 9, 2014, from Pope Francis. They are doing their part. We must do ours.

Sadly, some people, including some Christians, separate prayer and action. As a Christian, I believe such a separation is dangerous - and misunderstands both Christian prayer and Christian action. I urge our readers to do both.

******

His Excellency
Mr Ban Ki-moon
Secretary General
United Nations Organization
 
It is with a heavy and anguished heart that I have been following the dramatic events of these past few days in Northern Iraq where Christians and other religious minorities have been forced to flee from their homes and witness the destruction of their places of worship and religious patrimony.

Moved by their plight, I have asked His Eminence Cardinal Fernando Filoni, Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, who served as the Representative of my predecessors, Pope St John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI, to the people in Iraq, to manifest my spiritual closeness and to express my concern, and that of the entire Catholic Church, for the intolerable suffering of those who only wish to live in peace, harmony and freedom in the land of their forefathers.

In the same spirit, I write to you, Mr Secretary-General, and place before you the tears, the suffering and the heartfelt cries of despair of Christians and other religious minorities of the beloved land of Iraq. In renewing my urgent appeal to the international community to take action to end the humanitarian tragedy now underway, I encourage all the competent organs of the United Nations, in particular those responsible for security, peace, humanitarian law and assistance to refugees, to continue their efforts in accordance with the Preamble and relevant Articles of the United Nations Charter.

The violent attacks that are sweeping across Northern Iraq cannot but awaken the consciences of all men and women of goodwill to concrete acts of solidarity by protecting those affected or threatened by violence and assuring the necessary and urgent assistance for the many displaced people as well as their safe return to their cities and their homes.

The tragic experiences of the Twentieth Century, and the most basic understanding of human dignity, compels the international community, particularly through the norms and mechanisms of international law, to do all that it can to stop and to prevent further systematic violence against ethnic and religious minorities.

Confident that my appeal, which I unite with those of the Oriental Patriarchs and other religious leaders, will meet with a positive reply, I take this opportunity to renew to your Excellency the assurances of my highest consideration.

From the Vatican, 9 August 2014
FRANCISCUS PP.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2016 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for May 2016
Universal:
Respect for Women: That in every country of the world, women may be honored and respected and that their essential contribution to society may be highly esteemed.
Evangelization: Holy Rosary: That families, communities, and groups may pray the Holy Rosary for evangelization and peace.



Comments


More Middle East

Why YOU should care about the anti-American elected to lead Iran's most powerful religious body Watch

Image of Ahmed Jannati has been elected to lead Iran's Assembly of Experts (Iran Human Rights Organization).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

After a Tuesday vote, Iran's Assembly of Experts elected 89-year-old Ahmed Jannati as its next supreme leader.Jannati is famous for his extremely conservative views of Islam and is now in a position to choose Iran's next Supreme Leader. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading


ISIS leaders punished with NEW EXECUTION METHOD using DOGS Watch

Image of ISIS leaders who fail their duties are now sentenced to death by dogs (HWT Image Library).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

It's a bad time to be an ISIS commander. In response to the continual failures on the battlefield, ISIS commanders are now being executed by being fed to aggressive dogs. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A Kurdish commander spoke to the Iranian media outlet ... continue reading


Are we in danger? Islamic State calls for attacks on Europe and US during upcoming Muslim holy month Watch

Image of Abu Mohamed al-Adnani released a 31-minute speech to call ISIS supporters to fight (ISIS video).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

ISIS followers have been urged to strike at Europe and the United States by a 31-minute speech Abu Mohamed al-Adnani posted online. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - In his speech, al-Adnani told his followers: "The tiniest action you do in the heart of their land is ... continue reading


Iran gleeful: Israel is just eight minutes away from destruction Watch

Image of Iran has precision ballistic missiles which can strike Israel.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A senior Iranian military adviser has said that Israel can be destroyed within eight minutes, if the order is given. The estimate is based on the amount of time it will take for a missile to reach Israel. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - Ahmad Karimpour, an ... continue reading


'Isil runs a normal state ... where there are disabled people and so on': Man shot then crucified in public square by wheelchair Jihad Watch

Image of ISIS' wheelchair executioner at work again.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

An ISIS militant confined to a wheelchair has made headlines once again for executing an innocent. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to <a ... continue reading


ISIS desecrates Christian headstones Watch

Image of ISIS militant stands with the help of crutches beside destroyed Christian headstone.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

In a newly released video, an ISIS militant, supporting himself on crutches, stood beside the remains of a destroyed Christian headstone. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The video, shown on <a ... continue reading


Al-Qaeda's new hit list includes Bill Gates Watch

Image of Al Qaeda issues new hit list aimed at American economic leaders.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The latest issue of Al-Qaeda's propaganda magazine 'Inspire' claims the assassination of several American business leaders can be of use in the Prophet's holy war. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to Daily Mail, a hit list was released for lone wolf jihads ... continue reading


Jesus' baptism site to be cleared of landmines Watch

Image of Christian pilgrims often come to get baptized in the same river Jesus was baptized (Alamy Stock Photo).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Barbed wire, 5,000 landmines and danger signs written in Arabic, English and Hebrew surround the site believed to be the area Jesus was baptized in the Jordan River. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Though the Israeli and Jordanian armies concluded their war in ... continue reading


Christian accused of blasphemy on the run with $10,000 bounty on his head Watch

Image of The young man is wanted for allegedly watching anti-Muslim videos on a phone (BBC).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A young man has been accused of blasphemy after allegedly searching for and watching anti-Muslim content on YouTube with his phone, leading to a $10,000 bounty. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to the Centre for Legal Aid, Assistance and Settlement ... continue reading


Vatican saves the day! Project will launch in Jordan Watch

Image of Vatican donates $150,000 to launch the project (AFP).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Iraqi refugees currently residing in Jordan face unemployment and, ultimately, starvation. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Jordan is currently playing host for nearly 1.5 million refugees and has begun to sway beneath the weight of responsibility.There are not ... continue reading


All Middle East News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

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

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • Prayer to Saint Valentine HD Video
  • A Prayer Before Surgery HD Video
  • Daily Readings for Thursday, May 26, 2016
  • St. Philip Neri: Saint of the Day for Thursday, May 26, 2016
  • New study reveals Catholics hold highest retention rate - but no one ...
  • REVEALED: China has an army of paid trolls, guess who else has one?
  • Miracle for baby born without half his skull

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Peter 1:18-25
18 For you know that the price of your ransom from the futile way of life ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 147:12-13, 14-15, 19-20
12 Praise Yahweh, Jerusalem, Zion, praise your God.13 For he ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 10:32-45
32 They were on the road, going up to Jerusalem; Jesus was walking on ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 25th, 2016 Image

St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi
May 25: It would be easy to concentrate on the mystical ... Read More