Holy Land Christians Praying for Iraqi Brethren

Ordinaries Call for End to Violence

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JERUSALEM, MARCH 18, 2010 (Zenit.org).- Church leaders from the Holy Land are expressing their support and promising prayers for the Christian community suffering violence in Iraq.

In a communiqué published after their March 8-10 plenary meeting, members of the Assembly of Catholic Ordinaries in the Holy Land underlined their «fraternal closeness» to Christians in Iraq in «these times of trial.»

In the past few weeks, a killing spree in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul claimed the lives of eight Christians.
The Holy Land ordinaries — bishops, religious superiors and other diocesan authorities — affirmed, «The faithful of Jordan, Palestine and Israel think of you, suffer with you and pray for you.»

In a united voice, they exclaimed, «Enough!»
The communiqué expressed a prayer for «new feelings and new predispositions for the conversion of all those who live in Mosul, ancient Nineveh, to convince them that our God is a God of love and not of hatred.»
The ordinaries expressed the hope that «our Christian brothers of the Nineveh region will endure their trials with patience, certain that the forces of evil will not prevail, while the force of love is eternal.»
«After the Calvary of the Cross, there is always liberating redemption and the dawn of resurrection,» they added.
Different media sources — among them Tele Lumiere and Noursat and the Web sites abouna.com and lpj.org — launched a campaign of solidarity with the Christians of Iraq, especially of Mosul and of the whole of the Nineveh region.
The Assembly of Catholic Ordinaries in the Holy Land was created by the initiative of the apostolic delegate in Jerusalem to foster unity within the Church in that region. It includes ordinaries of different rites with jurisdiction in that territory. Pope John Paul II approved their statutes on January 27, 1992.
The assembly’s functions are to harmonize evangelical witness, serve the community of the faithful, study common problems, foster the exchange of information and experiences, and create a common program of pastoral care for the good of the whole Church.

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