"The Christianity of history is not Protestantism. If ever there were a safe truth it is this, and Protestantism has ever felt it so; to be deep in history is to cease to be a Protestant." (-John Henry Newman, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine).

"Where the bishop is, there let the people gather; just as where ever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church". -St. Ignatius of Antioch (ca 110 AD)a martyr later thrown to the lions, wrote to a church in Asia Minor. Antioch was also where the term "Christian" was first used.

“But if I should be delayed, you should know how to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of truth.” 1 Timothy 3:15

"This is the sole Church of Christ, which in the Creed we profess to be one, holy, catholic and apostolic." -CCC 811

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Archbishop of Kirkuk appeals to the Church and Italy

by Msgr Louis Sako
Archbishop Louis Sako appeals for solidarity from brothers and sisters in the West. Since 2005, 900 Christians have been killed, among them five priests and the archbishop of Mosul, 52 churches have been attacked. A message for the Italian Church on the eve of a day of prayer and solidarity with the persecuted Christians of Iraq, wanted by the Italian Bishops' Conference.

Kirkuk (AsiaNews) - "Do not leave us alone in this time of tribulation" is the appeal that the archbishop of Kirkuk, Msgr. Louis Sako, has sent to AsiaNews for publication in Italy on the eve of a day of prayer and solidarity for Christians in Iraq, wanted by the Italian Episcopal Conference (CEI). Tomorrow, in all the parishes in Italy there will be moments of prayer for persecuted Christians and especially for Christians in Iraq. The Day also aims to raise awareness in Italy and Europe, so they may double their efforts toward Iraq. Yesterday Cardinal. Angelo Bagnasco, president of CEI, spoke to AsiaNews, saying that “Italy and Europe cannot look away because what is at stake is religious freedom, which is the basis for all other forms of freedom".

In his appeal, supported by other Iraqi bishops, Msgr. Sako reveals that "since 2005, 900 Christians have been killed, among them five priests and the archbishop of Mosul, 52 churches attacked. Many families have been forced to leave their homes and flee to save their children and their Christian faith. " Here is the appeal sent by Msgr. Sako to AsiaNews:

Appeal to our brothers and sisters in Italy

Our people in Iraq today are persecuted, threatened and suffer martyrdom. Since 2005, 900 Christians have been killed, among them five priests and the archbishop of Mosul, 52 churches attacked. Many families have been forced to leave their homes and flee to save their children and their Christian faith.

We are ready to do everything to preserve our faith and our loyalty to Christ. We are conscious that martyrdom is the charism of our Church. This is what gives us the strength to stay and persevere.

Our ordeal is heavy and seems long. The carnage that took place at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Salvation in Baghdad on October 31 has profoundly shaken us.

We are losing patience, but not faith or hope. We need the prayers and moral support and fellowship of our Christian brothers and sisters of the West. Without their support and solidarity we feel alone and isolated. Do not leave us alone in this time of tribulation. Our journey can continue with your help and your prayers.

+Louis Sako
Chaldean archbishop of Kirkuk










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