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» 05/22/2007
IRAQ
Free, but “deeply marked” the Chaldean priest kidnapped in Baghdad
Fr. Nawzat P. Hanna was released yesterday after three days in captivity. Currently he is in safe keeping in the capital, but he bares marks of having been beaten. Baghdad’s auxiliary bishop: “Let u spray that these episodes do not happen again and that our priest finds the courage to remain in Iraq, to serve his Church”.

Baghdad (AsiaNews) –Chaledean priest Nawzat P. Hanna  freed yesterday evening in Baghdad after three days of captivity carries the signs of having been beaten. Msgr Shlemon Warduni, auxiliary bishop of the capital’s Chaldean Catholic Church himself went to fetch the priest “in a certain part of the city” as he told AsiaNews today. His release took place at around 9.30 in the evening.  “When he saw me – tells the prelate – Fr. Nawzat strongly embraced me, he was in tears and he was deeply tried; he then thanked all of those who had prayed for him in these days, The Virgin and the saint of his parish, Mar Pithion”.

 

The priest has recovered somewhat, “he has calmed” and he is in Baghdad. “Let us hope that he finds the courage to continue serving the Church in Iraq – augurs msgr. Warduni – his family have already moved abroad but he instead chose to remain with his parishioners”. In the past other priests kidnapped in the capital were subsequently transferred to Northern Iraq or abroad because of the high security risk.

 

Parish priest of the Mar Pithion Church, in the Baladiyat quarter of the capital, Fr Nawzat was leaving the home of a sick parishioner May 19th when he was stopped by a group of people who “had been waiting for him”.  The abductors immediately contacted the Patriarchate demanding a “very high” ransom for his release.

 

“Let us pray – concluded the bishop – that events such as these do not happen again”.

 


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See also
05/21/2007 IRAQ
”High” ransom demanded for Priest kidnapped in Baghdad
05/19/2007 IRAQ
A Chaldean priest is kidnapped in Baghdad
09/07/2009 IRAQ
Mosul: more kidnappings and murders of Christians, to force them to the plain of Nineveh
06/04/2007 IRAQ
The Chaldean Church mourns Fr. Ragheed Ganni and his martyrs
05/22/2009 IRAQ
Kirkuk: young Christian teacher is freed thanks to help of Muslims

Editor's choices
VATICAN
Pope: I am with the persecuted Christians of Mosul and the Middle East "May the God of peace inspire in all a genuine desire for dialogue and reconciliation. Violence is never defeated with violence. Violence is defeated with peace." At the Sunday Angelus Francis comments on the parable of the wheat and the weeds. God is "patient" He knows "the same weeds in the end, may become good wheat". But "at the time of the harvest, that is, of judgment, the reapers will execute the order of the master separating the weeds to be burned".
CHINA - VATICAN
Beijing, seminarians desert graduation ceremony: We will not celebrate Mass with illegitimate bishops The rector of the seminary is the illegitimate bishop Joseph Ma Yinglin: Students refuse to concelebrate with him and reject Msgr. Fang Xingyao, who has participated in several illegal episcopal ordinations. The directors close the year without awarding diplomas and send students home: rumors of some courses being "suspended" in September. The precedent of 2000, when 130 young students chose fidelity to the Pope over compromise with the government.
HONG KONG-CHINA-VATICAN
Card Zen: Religious freedom and civil liberties are united, for China and Hong Kong
by Bernardo CervelleraA wide ranging conversation with the bishop emeritus of Hong Kong: the courage of Msgr. Ma Daqin, who sent a message to Pope Francis; underground Catholics are also prepared to be arrested; suspicions about Beijing’s sincerity towards possible dialogue with the Holy See. And in Hong Kong, the march for a referendum on democracy; support for "Occupy Central"; the fear of the government and arrests. Card. Zen reaffirms that religious freedom and civil liberties go hand in hand.

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
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