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    » 07/11/2013, 00.00

    IRAQ - ISLAM

    Patriarch Sako: Greetings of peace to our Muslim brothers and sisters for Ramadan

    Mar Louis Raphael I Sako

    His Beatitude Mar Raphael Louis Sako I sends a message to the Islamic community at the start of the holy month of fasting and prayer. He hopes it will be a time for doing good and for reconciliation in a country ravaged by ten years of war and violence. Patriarch calls for dialogue in order to create "one community" in the "diversity" of its various components.

    Baghdad (AsiaNews) - "On behalf of myself and of all the of Christians of Iraq, I extend my best wishes to all Muslim men and women for the beginning of this blessed month," said Mar Louis Raphael I Sako, Chaldean Patriarch, in an address to his brothers and sisters of Islam at the start of Ramadan. His Beatitude wishes that it will be a time of "doing good and peace" for the country and its inhabitants. He stressed the primary duty to preserve "our national unity" and adopt a "language of dialogue in solving problems." Because, the Patriarch added, "We are one community despite our diversity."

    Yesterday, the holy month began in much of the Muslim world with fasting, praying, performing works of charity, and forgiving. At Ramadan, Muslims commemorate the time when Allah revealed the first verses of the Qur'an to Muhammad, by sending the Archangel Gabriel to earth. Every person above puberty who is mentally and physically fit has to fast.

    However, the holy month is above all a time for good deeds and avoiding anything that displeases Allah. It is a time to thank him for all his blessings, a time for charity toward those who are less fortunate.

    As the month of prayer, Ramadan is also a time for initiatives of peace, which is why the Chaldean Patriarch sent a message of best wishes centred on doing "good" and on reconciliation in a country devastated by ten years of sectarian war and violence.

    Here is the message His Beatitude Mar Raphael Louis Sako gave AsiaNews for his Muslim brothers and sisters on the occasion of the holy month of Ramadan:

    Peace be upon you!

    On behalf of myself and of all the Christians of Iraq, I extend my best wishes to all Muslim men and women for the beginning of this blessed month, hoping that it will bring good things and peace to Iraq and all Iraqis.

    Dear brothers and sisters! As you know, fasting is a time to express our absolute submission to the will of God and our recognition of His supremacy. It is also a time to express solidarity through good deeds and sharing the Al-Iftar.

    Islam wants to achieve stability and ensure a life of dignity and freedom to all men and women without distinction, because God created them equal. So many people see in the month of fasting a particular time to pray, give alms, and ask for forgiveness in order to arrive at genuine reconciliation with oneself and with others.

    Our country is going through a critical time and it is hard to imagine what the future will bring unless we boost the goal of true mutual coexistence, and prevent those who want to separate and destroy us, under any pretext, from reaching their goal.

    Let us preserve our national unity and adopt a language of dialogue in solving problems, because we are one community despite our diversity.

    According to an Arab proverb, "there is bread and salt" among us, which is one way of singing the praises of good relations. We fast during this month, Muslims and Christians, each in his own way, for reconciliation, peace and stability in our country. Let us hope that a desire for reflection, a heart that loves and hands that work will always prevail because only this way, can true joy touch everyone!

    Happy Fasting!

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    See also

    04/07/2016 17:09:00 IRAQ
    For Patriarch Sako, Baghdad massacre rooted in IS’s desire to rule the world

    This morning, the Chaldean Patriarch visited Baghdad’s Karrada district, scene of the latest Jihadi attack.  So far the death toll stands at 165 with at least 225 wounded. Other sources claim more than 200 deaths. Government unity is needed to counter extremist violence. The Muslim world must realise that IS is a cancer eating away at Islam itself. Pope Francis prays for the victims and their families.



    13/06/2013 IRAQ
    Chaldean Synod: revitalising the Christian presence in Iraq and freedom for Syrian bishops
    This is the thrust of the paper that marked the end of the meeting held in Baghdad on 5-10 June. The Fathers call for the creation of a "competent" Christian political class, urging the faithful to be "a bridge between cultures." The Synod also stressed the importance of the ecumenical movement and calls for an "honest dialogue" with the Assyrian Church of the East. It issues special thanks to Pope Francis.

    23/01/2016 13:15:00 IRAQ
    Patriarch Sako: the ministry of lector for 40 men and women, a sign of a living Iraqi Church

    Yesterday, 40 men and women received the lectorate in Baghdad’s Cathedral of St Joseph. The Chaldean Patriarch emphasised women’s role in the community. For Mgr Yaldo, more than 600 people came together "in an atmosphere of serenity and sharing”. The celebration is part of planned events for the Year of Mercy.



    27/12/2014 IRAQ
    For Chaldean Patriarch, Christmas is the source of hope for Iraqi Christians "displaced" like Jesus
    In his homily, Mar Sako noted the Christian community's "difficult and painful circumstances," but also pointed out that the festivity is cause for renewed hope. He looks forward to a future of peace, harmony and coexistence, but to reach that goal, the country needs a strong political system and the foreign policy of the United States and the West must change.

    15/07/2014 IRAQ
    Baghdad Patriarch calls on parliament to save the country from division
    Iraq's National Assembly meets again today. It has failed so far to find a shared line and elect the country's 'three presidents'. Mar Sako says that parliamentarians have an "historical and moral responsibility" to save the nation from the "danger" of division. He includes a prayer to be recited before parliament starts work.



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    In China-Holy See talks, silence shrouds future of underground priests

    Zhao Nanxiong

    Later this year, all priests must register to receive a certificate that allows them to exercise their ministry. But the request has to go through the Patriotic Association, whose statutes are "incompatible" with Catholic doctrine. Many priests, official and unofficial, now face an enormous dilemma.


    IRAQ
    Alqosh, despite the Islamic State, the Church celebrates the first communion of one hundred children



    On the feast day of the Assumption the whole community attended the function, celebrated by Mar Sako. For the patriarchal vicar, this is an historic moment for the frontier town long threatened by jihadists. The Chaldean primate calls on children to "contribute to the community." In Kirkuk His Beatitude opened a grotto dedicated to Our Lady.


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