Skip to comments.Baghdad Christians celebrate Palm Sunday without fear
Posted on 03/21/2005 8:49:00 AM PST by NYer
Baghdad (AsiaNews/Agencies) Iraqi Christians crowded Palm Sunday services in Baghdad. We are not afraid, said Mayssoun Ishoo, a Syriac Catholic who, with other faithful, attended services at Our Lady of Deliverance in Baghdad to start Holy Week celebrations.
The church was one of the five Christian places of worship hit by bomb attacks in August 2004. It was further targeted by another bomb last October. But yesterday, Palm Sunday, it was hit by throngs of people, families with their children.
Arriving at the church the faithful performed the traditional act of reverence before the statue of Our Lady which stands in the Church yard, now protected by cement blocks to discourage car bombs.
Hundreds of people, olive branches in their hands, eagerly participated in the mass service. They were relaxed and their faces did not have that edginess of some months ago.
During the procession, many reached out to touch the bronze cross carried by the celebrating priest.
Attacks in the last few months have not stopped us from attending service, many of them said.
Still, Mgr Shaba Matoka, head of the Syriac Catholic Church, said that we are not always certain that we can live in peace. In his opinion, the troublemakers are not true Iraqis, but foreigners and those who serve foreign interests.
Speaking about the countrys many religious groups, he stressed that everyone in Iraq in Iraq has expressed the desire to live together.
Even talk about introducing Sharia law in Iraq has not raised concerns among Iraqi Christians.
I dont cover my head like Muslim women, said a Christian woman, who was wearing smart make-up and was accompanied by her two daughters clad in jeans.
Christians were also delighted to hear that Minas al-Yousifi, a Christian political leader abducted in Baghdad on January 28, was released last Friday.
The Iraqi Vengeance Brigades had claimed the kidnapping and demanded a US$ 4 million ransom and the withdrawal of foreign troops. Eventually, the kidnappers asked only for US$ 400,000.
In a dramatic video footage al-Yousifi, who had spent 20 years in exile in Sweden, appealed to the Pope and the King of Sweden.
Upon his liberation Mr Yousifi, who heads Iraqs Christian Democratic Party, said no ransom was paid. (LF)
God bless them, they have tremendous courage and a strong faith.
BAGHDAD, Iraq August 1, 2004. Islamic Terrorist on Sunday carried a coordinated wave of car bombs on five Christian Churches in Baghdad and Mosul (Nineveh).
The attacks in Baghdad killed 15 people and injuring more than 50, the attacks on Mosul churches killed 11 people and injured 11 worshippers.
The first attack was aimed at the Baghdad Armenian Church in Karada just 15 minutes into the Sunday Service at around 6:30 p. m. After 10 minutes later there was a blast at a second church this time the Assyrian Catholic church, 500 meters away was targeted.
At 7:15 p. m. The third church was bombed of Mar Butrus Polus in the Al-Doora district in Southeast Baghdad, belonging to the AssyroChaldean Catholic Faith.
At the same time of 7 p. m In the district of Naaeriya, New Baghdad (east of the capital), the church of Mar Elia el Heeri, also Assyrian (Syrian) Catholic Church was bombed.
In Mosul (Nineveh), at around 7 p. m. a car bomb blew up next to Mark Polus Church while worshippers were coming out of mass. Six cars were damaged, and parts of the church were damaged by fire. Reporters said several rocket-propelled grenades were also launched at the church. Iraqi police discovered a sixth bomb outside a Baghdad church. And authorities disarmed it.
The church blasts shattered stained-glass windows and sent churchgoers running into the streets, screaming and clutching their bleeding heads. The Assyrian church appeared to be among the most seriously damaged. The blast gouged a 4-by-6-foot crater and blew apart much of a brick wall surrounding the church. Inside the church compound, the explosion broke or ripped away the stone facades of more than a dozen tombs.
Catholic Ping - Come home for Easter and experience Gods merciful love. Please freepmail me if you want on/off this list
Monday, August 02, 2004
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Beware the wrath of the patient when finally aroused
The atrocity has backfired. If the intent of the criminals was to incite sectarian violence between Moslems and Christians; then they have achieved exactly the opposite. In my living memory I have never witnessed such upsurge of sympathy for the Christian community as what is happening right now. The people are really aroused now. The new Iraqi TV stations (including Al Sharqiya) are doing non-stop coverage of the event. Everybody has to proclaim his denunciation in no uncertain terms, even the hypocrites perhaps with some shy and stammering insinuations of the usual charges that perhaps it was the Americans or the Jews etc., sounding unconvinced themselves of these slanders; because even an absolute imbecile can easily guess who is behind this and in fact, I dont think anybody has any serious doubt about the identity of the perpetrators.
These hate creatures are beyond redemption. We can perhaps talk about dealing with the root causes of terrorism etc. etc., but this will apply to preventing future growth of the cancer, but the present cancerous cells are incurable. The only fitting solution for these is amputation.
Perhaps the most fitting solution is to prepare a great big pond of Ordure", to put it genteelly, and drown them all in it Bullshit to Bullshit and Excrement to Excrement, and Good Riddance for ever, brothers - beards, turbans and all; and we don't think we are going to miss you much. And please Lord don't let them send video tapes to Al Jazeera from Hell.
And then, we shall all live happily ever after.
How many Americans could understand or know of the bravery of these people?
Or ... the mercy and forgiveness they extend to those who have inflicted this damage.
It's truly amazing to behold.
I so much enjoyed both posts. Uplifting news! The Iraqui people have my highest respect for facing and overcoming trials that we can hardly even imagine. The spiritual war between good and evil is being fought hard, and daily throughout the world. But center focus is in this area where evil had such a stronghold for so very long. How wonderful it is to learn that the light of goodness still shines through the dark fog of evil's making. Good will win and we must continue to believe that while we give thanks for what has been achieved.
The spirit of the Iraqi people combined with our help are winning this struggle. This is the story you'll never see in the news and the story I get to see every day here in Baghdad.
Your service is truly appreciated, Chief. Stay safe, and continue to proudly show the flag. God bless!
It's good that they're not afraid, because that's exactly what the lowlifes behind the bombings want.
A prayer going up to the Lord for our troops in theater.
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