Saturday, March 31, 2018

Iraqi Christians

Church bells to ring once more this Easter in Iraq

Imran Khan (ALJAZEERA) reports:

Hidden away behind a huge concrete blast wall and a heavily armed police checkpoint in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad is a beautiful little Chaldean church.
In the garden, a statue of the Virgin Mary is tucked away into a little man-made cave and inside the word of God is written in English, Arabic and Aramaic.
The priest shows us in the Chaldean Church of the Virgin Mary, which dates back to 1960s.
The Christian community in Iraq is said to be one of the oldest continuously existing communities in the world. They have had a presence in this land as far back as Mesopotamia. 

Iraqi Christians hold masses thru-out Iraq, from Basra to Baghdad to Nineveh Plains. In Middle East Christian cultures everything else shuts down in the communities during the weekend, as all prepare and gather to celebrate the most important days of the year.

On NPR's WEEKEND UPDATE today, Scott Simon explored Iraq and Easter with a guest.

Beautiful. Now that ISIS has been defeated, thousands of Christian families have returned to the Iraqi town of Qaraqosh to celebrate Palm Sunday for the first time in 4 years.

From Easter until Pentecost we are raising donations for Iraqi Christians still displaced w/in Iraq, and for Iraqi/Syrian Christian refugees in Lebanon & Jordan. The President of will be delivering the aid in-person. You can help at:

  1. Mart Shmoni Chuch in , , was completely destroyed by ISIS; incl'd its 800-yr-old altar (1st 2 pics of church post-ISIS). Thrilled to learn that just put the Cross back on the dome of Mart Shmoni Church.

  2. Surreal moment to hold the images of my grandmother, Rabi Lileh Taimoorazy and my great uncle, Freydoon bet-Abram Atouraya over the Plains of Nineveh. Two of my heroes who dedicated their lives to the Assyrian cause. Nineveh Press,

  1. After mass, take up the cross and carry it, in complete darkness, through our historic town of , . were converted by St. Thomas the Apostle in the 1st century. Pics by Eduard Prolis.

  1. Very touching pics from Sunday's masses in . These are from the Ashti displacement camp in Erbil, where these have been displaced from their homes & living in very small caravans for the past 3.5 years. Yet their faith is untouchable.

  2. Rare pics of Iraqi Jewish cemetery containing 4,000+ graves in Sadr City (formerly known as Al-Thawra); a suburb of , . Pics from the group - Iraqi Jews (Jews of Babylon).

  3. Zina Rose Kiryakos, Iraqi-American Attorney & head of Iraqi Christian HRC , meets with State Department officials regarding the plight of Iraqi Christians. Standing here in front of the State Department’s mural.