Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

8/21/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Catholic and Orthodox patriarchs pay visit to support Iraqi Christians

A delegation of senior members of the Catholic and Orthodox Churches visited Irbil, Iraq, in order to show their support and solidarity with the more than 100,000 Christians and minorities who have been displaced due to the ongoing conquests of the Islamic State.

Iraqi Kurdish fighters have been engaged in fighting with the Islamic State since the beginning of this month. During a meeting with heads of the Catholic Church, Kurdish officials swore to protect Christians in Kurdistan.

Iraqi Kurdish fighters have been engaged in fighting with the Islamic State since the beginning of this month. During a meeting with heads of the Catholic Church, Kurdish officials swore to protect Christians in Kurdistan.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

8/21/2014 (1 year ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: International, Middle East, Iraq


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Lebanese Cardinal Bechara Rai, the patriarch of the Maronite Catholics, said that the trip was the "first step in the implementation of the statement issued by the patriarchs," referring to a summit that was held on August 7 to address the crisis facing Christians in Iraq and Syria.

Your Iraqi brothers and sisters NEED YOUR HELP!


"The first and essential clause in the statement is our support for Christians who have left their houses because of the Islamic State and other terrorist organizations."

Cardinal Rai left Beirut with Melkite Catholic Patriarch Gregoire III Laham, Syriac Catholic Patriarch Ignace Joseph III Younan and Syriac Orthodox Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II.

Upon arriving in Irbil, the capital of the Kurdish region of Iraq, the group was joined by Chaldean Catholic Patriarch Louis Sako of Baghdad and local officials, which including Kurdistan's Regional Interior Minister Karim Sinjari and Irbil Governor Nawzad Hadi.

The men visited three churches in Irbil and prayed with refugees from the Ninevah Plain. These refugees had fled after being told to convert to Islam, pay the tax on non-Muslims, or die. Many were robbed before they could flee.

"We want all the Christians, Muslims, Yezidis, Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds to stay in Iraq and not to leave because this is our homeland, this is our culture, and civilization and we do not want to part with it," said Cardinal Rai. "The ones who want to help us must work to stop injustice, help us end injustice and help our people regain their rights. This is what we want from the ones who want to help."

"We cannot stand idly by and watch as evil oppresses the people. We will carry our cause to the whole world."

"We demand that the displaced be allowed to return to their land with dignity. We will not accept anything less than that," Cardinal Rai said.

Lebanon's National News Agency reported that the group received a promise from Kurdish authorities. A promise that Christians will be protected "until the last drop of blood."

In a news conference held before leaving Iraq, the patriarchs expressed support for human rights, including the rights of Christians to remain in their homes.

"We cannot tolerate the tragedy we have witnessed here today," said Orthodox Patriarch Ignatius. He urged U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to visit the regions to determine if the displaced Iraqis could continue to live this way.

Cardinal Rai said: "It is unacceptable to allow terrorist organizations to eliminate entire communities in the 21st century."

"Do not think of emigrating; safeguard your roots," the cardinal told Christians. "We are on your side and we will raise our voice to the international community to act against terrorism."

Pope Francis has publicly expressed concern about Iraqi minorities, and even sent a special envoy, Cardinal Fernando Filoni to Iraq on August 13 to gather information. Cardinal Filoni arrived back in Rome on August 31.

---


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


Copyright 2016 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for June 2016
Universal:
Human Solidarity: That the aged, marginalized, and those who have no one may find-even within the huge cities of the world-opportunities for encounter and solidarity.
Evangelization: Seminarians and Novices: That seminarians and men and women entering religious life may have mentors who live the joy of the Gospel and prepare them wisely for their mission.



Comments


More Middle East

Russians BOMB U.S. base in Syria - 4 dead Watch

Image of Two Russian fighter bombers made strikes against an Allied base in Syria.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Russian warplanes have bombed a U.S. base in Syria. The attacks took place on June 16 and are only now being disclosed to the public. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - According to the Wall Street Journal, the Russians attacked a U.S. base in June. The base is ... continue reading


WATCH NOW: Brave rebel destroys ISIS tank with grenade Watch

Image of Syrian rebel throws grenade into tank.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The U.S. and U.K.-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA) continues to fight the Assad regime. In one of the latest videos released by the FSA, a lone soldier takes on a tank of enemy soldiers. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Daily Mail included a clip of an FSA soldier ... continue reading


Great Pyramid contains elaborate system to prevent looting, but did it really work? Watch

Image of The Great Pyramid is the largest, most elaborate of all the Egyptian pyramids.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The Great Pyramid of Giza had an elaborate system to prevent looting, archaeologists say. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - Dr. Mark Lehner of the Giza Plateau Mapping Project says the Great Pyramid contains a primitive machine to prevent looting. He has ... continue reading


'I am convinced that Father Tom is alive': New photo of haggard-looking Fr. Tom released Watch

Image of Image of Fr. Tom believed to be fake.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The group believed to be responsible for kidnapping Fr. Tom released a new photo of the priest to his hacked Facebook account. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Father Tom was kidnapped in Yemen, presumably by the Islamic State. When news of his Good Friday execution ... continue reading


Man loses arms as punishment for loving Christ Watch

Image of Aqeel Masih (LEAD).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Islamic extremists have been engaging in more horrific crimes specifically to persecute Christians. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to the<a href=http://leadfamily.blogspot.co.uk/>Legal Evangelical Association Development</a> (LEAD), Aqeel ... continue reading


Listen to this ancient hymn: Recreated for first time since 1400 BC! Watch

Image of The clay tablet with the hymn is the only one of 29 still legible (Michael Levy/YouTube).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

For the first time in about 3,500 years, an ancient hymn was recreated from a clay tablet, making it the oldest hymn currently known to man. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to the New Historian, the hymn dates back to the Bronze age and is dedicated to ... continue reading


ISIS battle commander, 'Omar the Chechen' confirmed dead in U.S. strike as Coalition advances on Mosul Watch

Image of Omar the Chechen, one of the Islamic State's best commanders, is dead.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The Islamic State has confirmed their great battle commander, Omar the Chechen is dead. U.S. authorities believe he was killed in an airstrike. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - Part of the U.S. strategy against ISIS is to destroy their command structure. This ... continue reading


Hate cemeteries? Then don't watch this drone footage of the world's LARGEST cemetery! Watch

Image of A fresh grave at Wadi Al-Salaam. This person joins an estimated five million other deceased dating back 1,400 years.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A drone has captured footage of the world's largest cemetery. Wadi Al-Salaam, known as the "Valley of Peace" is situated in Iraq and holds an estimated 5 million graves. A drone has now captured breathtaking footage of the holy site. LOS ANGELES, CA (California ... continue reading


Is the Middle East on the brink of Nuclear War? Watch

Image of Does Iran already have nuclear capability?

By Tony Johnson (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Recent news reports indicate that Saudi Arabia has obtained nuclear weapons.  If Iran's 2016 testing of long range nuclear warhead capable missiles is an indicator, does this mean Iran was able to "beat the clock" in Uranium 235 enrichment before the treaty was ... continue reading


Anti-American graffiti covers Yemen capital Watch

Image of Yemen capital covered in anti-America graffiti (Twitter).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Yemen  has been slammed to the ground again and again. Now, with the nation under Shiite control in one hand and the United States' involvement in the Yemen civil war in the other, anti-America graffiti has begun to pop up. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... 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

  • 'Contemplative communities are not immune': Pope Francis on prayer
  • Christ apparition in Mexico
  • St. James the Greater: Saint of the Day for Monday, July 25, 2016
  • Daily Reading for Tuesday, July 26th, 2016 HD Video
  • 'She is the witness to the risen Christ': Mary Magdalene honored
  • Daily Readings for Monday, July 25, 2016
  • Daily Reading for Monday, July 25th, 2016 HD Video

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Second Corinthians 4:7-15
7 But we hold this treasure in pots of earthenware, so that the immensity ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 126:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 6
1 [Song of Ascents] When Yahweh brought back Zion's captives we lived in ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 20:20-28
20 Then the mother of Zebedee's sons came with her sons to make a request ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 25th, 2016 Image

St. James the Greater
July 25: Nothing is known of St. James the Greater's early ... Read More