04/26/2014, 00.00
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Two Pope Saints: Iraq dedicates a statue to John Paul II

Mar Louis Raphael I Sako explains his absence from the canonization of the two Popes in Rome: "The elections to be held April 30 in Iraq. This means the airports will be closed April 28-30 and the absence of the Chaldean Patriarch at such a time would be serious”.

Baghdad (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The Patriarch will preside at a Mass to be held in the afternoon of April 26 in the Chaldean church of the Virgin Mary Queen of the Rosary in Baghdad, during which a statue of John Paul II will be unveiled.

Mar Louis was supposed to attend the canonization of the two Popes, which will be held April 27 in Rome, but the security measures taken in Iraq during elections involves the closure of airports.

"Everything was ready for my journey to Rome for the canonization of Blessed John XXIII and John Paul II" the Patriarch confided to Baghdadhope news agency, "but unfortunately the elections to be held April 30 in Iraq will lead to the closure of airports in the country between April 28-30 and it would be serious for the Chaldeans not to have their Patriarch among them at such an important time in national history.  This is why we have organized a local celebration in honor of the two new saints".

Moreover, in view of the Iraqi elections, to be held April 30, the Chaldean patriarch had asked that the following prayer be published and recited in churches throughout the country during the Easter Vigil.

Lord, You are our Creator and Father, we come to You in these difficult and critical circumstances that our country is passing through, asking for Your Light and Divine Providence  as individuals, communities and Governments, so that the next elections result for the good of Iraq and its people. 

We ask You, Lord, to enlighten us to perform our electoral responsibilities with honesty and integrity, and to vote for our representatives and congressmen who are more capable of building our homeland and its safety, security and prosperity. O Lord of all, glory and praise be to You forever


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