Skip to comments.Plight of Iraqi Christians 'more precarious than ever'
Posted on 06/30/2005 6:45:21 PM PDT by sionnsar
The Archbishop of Canterburys special envoy to the Middle East has warned that the situation facing Iraqi Christians is more precarious than ever.
Canon Andrew White, after returning from Iraq last week, claimed that many bishops do not feel free to move around their diocese due to the risk of kidnap. He also revealed that many Christians feel forgotten by the rest of the Christian world.
Cannon White said: Continually the Christians are accused of not being proper Iraqis because their faith is the faith of the west.
He added: Life in the last two years has deteriorated very considerably for most Christians. They cannot understand why the church in the west is offering them such little support.
The Archbishops special envoy claimed that Iraqi Christians are faced with a multitude of problems, including being targeted by Muslim extremists due to the mistaken belief that they are allies of the coalition forces. He revealed a lack of freedom to worship was also a significant problem and that many Christians have now fled Iraq, mostly to Syria and Jordan.
In the four months after the end of the Iraq war 12 new churches were started in Baghdad. This resulted in the decimation of the large churches.
Most Christians in Iraq are Eastern Catholic. Iraqi jurisdictions include: Chaldean Catholic Church lead by Patriarch Emmanuel III Dely who resides in Baghdad; Syrian Catholic Church, which has an Archeparchy in Baghdad and another in Mossul; Armenian Catholic Church which has an Archeparchy in Baghdad.
Additionally, there are some 400,000 Christians in Iraq who belong to the Assyrian Church of the East lead by Patriarch-Catholicos Mar Dinkha IV.
More may be found at the Catholic Near East Welfare Association's website: http://www.cnewa.org/ecc-bodypg.aspx?eccpageID=1&IndexView=toc
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