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» 02/25/2010
IRAQ - VATICAN
During Lenten retreat, Pope prays for Iraqi Christians and peace in the country
Benedict XVI is closely following the situation in Iraq and the escalation of violence against the Christian community. He expresses "deep sorrow" and is near to all who suffer "through prayer and affection." A letter from the Secretary of State Card. Bertone to Iraqi Prime Minister al-Maliki made public.

Baghdad (AsiaNews) - Even during his Lenten retreat, the pope is closely following the violence against Christians in Mosul and praying for peace in Iraq. In the current issue of  Osservatore Romano an article reports that Benedict XVI has learned with profound sorrow "of the escalation of attacks in the city of Mosul and the continued targeted killings of the faithful. The Pope - continues the note - is "close to those who suffer" the consequences of violence "with prayer and affection."    

On the massacre of Iraqi Christians, on January 2 last – but only made public today – Vatican secretary of State Card. Tarcisio Bertone wrote a letter to Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, stressing the urgency for dialogue and cooperation between ethnic and religious groups".  Recalling a meeting at the Vatican in 2008 between Benedict XVI and al-Maliki, the cardinal's call recalled the shared appeal for the "moral and civil reconstruction" of the country, while respecting the identity and spirit of reconciliation.  

In his letter, card. Bertone reiterated the Pope's exhortation for "respect in Iraq for the right to freedom of worship and the protection of Christians and their churches”. The Secretary of State - on the advice of Benedict XVI - finally expressed "sincere solidarity to the Iraqi prime minister and" to those who were killed wounded" in the attacks "on government buildings and places of worship in Iraq, both Muslim and Christian. "

 


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See also
07/25/2008 VATICAN – IRAQ
Pope receives al-Maliki, both hope dialogue will prevail over terrorism and violence
06/11/2007 IRAQ
Kirkuk: Muslims and Christians united for dialogue, only way to save Iraq
12/11/2008 VATICAN-UN
Pope: promote human rights everywhere, founded, in the end, in God creator
04/02/2006 IRAQ - VATICAN
Two days of prayer and fasting for peace and harmony in Iraq
05/05/2008 VIETNAM – VATICAN
Hanoi waiting for Vatican delegation in the “near future”
by JB. VU

Editor's choices
IRAQ-ITALY
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul," the thanks of the Patriarch Louis Sako; the concerns of the Bishop of Kurdistan
by Bernardo CervelleraThe head of the Chaldean Church is grateful for the AsiaNews campaign and hopes that "this chain of solidarity will reach far and wide”. Helping refugees to remain in Iraq. But many want to flee abroad. The bishop of Amadiyah where thousands of displaced people have found haven in churches and homes: We also help the Arabs (Muslims), and Yazidis, for free and without looking at our confessional differences.
ITALY - IRAQ
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul" to respond directly to Iraq's emergencyAsiaNews is launching a fundraiser to support Christians targeted by the Islamic State, thus responding to a request by the Patriarch of Baghdad and Pope Francis's urgent appeal "to guarantee all necessary assistance - especially the most urgently needed aid - to the great multitude of people who have been driven from their homes, whose fate depends entirely on the solidarity of others." More than 100,000 people have been forced to flee their homes leaving everything behind and now have nothing to live on. To help them, five euros a day are enough. The funds raised will be sent to the Patriarchate of Baghdad, which will distribute them according to the needs of each family.
CHINA - VATICAN
Wenzhou bishop and priests slam government's campaign against crosses and churches in Zhejiang
by Eugenia ZhangFor Mgr Vincent Zhu Weifang, from the official Church, the campaign of destruction is increasing social instability. It is real persecution against the Christian faith. The bishop apologises for failing to intervene sooner. He was hoping that the campaign would end quickly. Catholics and Protestants suffer injuries as they attempt to defend their sacred buildings. For priests in Wenzhou, the campaign is unfair and touches buildings that have all the right papers. Such "stupid acts" by the government are undermining social harmony.

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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