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Tag Archives: Middle East

Australia picked to help rebuild shattered Christian town Qaraqosh

Benjamin Blanchard

CHRISTIANS rebuilding their homes in devastated Qaraqosh could soon receive financial support from Australians concerned about the diminishing presence of Christianity in Iraq. Benjamin Blanchard, the founder of a non-government organisation helping persecuted Christians living in the Middle East, SOS Chretiens d’Orient, will visit Australia later this month with the hope of raising $150,000 to help rebuild Qaraqosh. Mr Blanchard ... Read More »

Baghdad-born priest kidnapped and tortured by Islamic extremists says Australia is ‘the promise land’ for Iraqi Christian refugees

Fr Douglas Bazi

AN Iraqi-born priest who was kidnapped and tortured by Islamic extremists for nine days says Australia is seen as “the promise land” for thousands of Christians still suffering from genocide in the Middle East. Bagdhad-born Fr Douglas Bazi of the Chaldean Catholic Church told The Catholic Leader that Australia was leading the way in welcoming thousands of Christians forced to ... Read More »

Iraqi Christians living in Brisbane who made a mass exodus from Qaraqosh rejoice at liberation of their region

iraqi liberation

BRISBANE’S Iraqi Christian refugees have joined worldwide celebrations as US-backed Iraqi forces regain towns and cities across northern Iraq, driving out Islamic State militants. Prayers, feasting and dancing accompanied news that Iraqi troops had taken back Qaraqosh, the mainly Christian town about 20km south-east of Mosul. “We are very excited, very happy,” said Kareem Patros, from the Parish of St ... Read More »

Seventy-five per cent of Syrian population live in poverty

Syrian girls walking near rubbish

FIVE years after the Syrian civil war began, the conflict’s legacy is one of the biggest humanitarian crises since the Second World War.In response, one of the largest humanitarian networks, Caritas, has reached 1.8 million Syrians in its programs in the past year alone.Caritas Australia’s head of emergencies Melville Fernandez said after five years 250,000 people had died, 12.2 million ... Read More »

Melkite leader tells Brisbane Lebanese and Syrian Catholics to “never give up hope” despite war

Melkite Eparch

“NEVER give up hope” is a key message Australia’s Melkite leader wants Brisbane’s Lebanese and Syrian Catholics to hold on to as the people of the Middle East continue to face terror and war.  Melkite Eparch of Australia and New Zealand Bishop Robert Rabbat visited St Clement’s Melkite Catholic parish in South Brisbane last weekend for its 90th anniversary and ... Read More »

Australian Melkite bishop makes plea on behalf of people of Syria

Syrian refugees

By Peter Bugden A LEADER of Melkite Catholics in Australia has urged the Church to pressure Western governments to help solve the crisis in Syria and Iraq at its source. Bishop Robert Rabbat, leader of the Melkite eparchy of Australia and New Zealand, said Islamic State militants were “getting money and weapons from somewhere” and governments of the West should ... Read More »

Syrian children risk becoming ‘lost generation’, Vatican official says

Syrian girl

WITHOUT family, a legal identity and adequate education, children uprooted by the ongoing violence in Syria and the Middle East “are at risk of becoming a lost generation”, permanent observer of the Holy See to the United Nations in Geneva Archbishop Silvano Tomasi says. The archbishop noted that “children suffer the brutal consequences” of war and called for a “comprehensive ... Read More »

Government reps say Christian survival in Middle East ‘in question’

Christians protest in Beirut

IN a joint statement, representatives of more than 50 countries have recognised that Christians are particularly endangered in the Middle East, and they called on the international community to reaffirm the human right to freedom of religion. The violence carried out by terrorist groups “creates the risk of complete disappearance for the Christians” in the region, they said. Catholic News ... Read More »

Vatican calls Middle East diplomats to Rome for talks on current crises

Cardinal Pietro Parolin

THE Vatican has called its diplomats from the Middle East to Rome to discuss crises in the region. A three-day summit will be held to further assess the current situation in the Middle East. Seven nuncios based in the Middle East were to meet with Vatican officials for talks from October 2-4 and greet Pope Francis briefly at the start ... Read More »

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