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Mosul Christians, angry and desperate (Islamist terrorists plan to run Christians out of Iraq)
Asia News ^ | March 14, 2008

Posted on 03/14/2008 10:39:15 AM PDT by NYer

AsiaNews speaks to the faithful about Archbishop Rahho who was found dead yesterday. Fears are growing that the community might cease to exist. Iraqi police blame al-Qaeda for the murder. Islamist terrorists plan to run Christians out of the country.


An Iraqi man holds a candle and a portrait of murdered Chaldean archbishop of Mosul Paulos Faraj Rahho during a mass at a church in the Kurdish city of Arbil in northern Iraq. Mourners from across Iraq gathered for the funeral the archbishop whose body was found two weeks after he was kidnapped, as Iraqi Christians expressed fears for their safety.
(AFP/Safin Hamed)


(AsiaNews) – Anger, fear and frustrations are the most common feelings expressed by Mosul Christians after the body of Mgr Faraj Rahho was found yesterday after 14 days in the hands of his kidnappers. No group has so far claimed responsibility for his abduction and subsequent murder but Iraqi police are convinced that al-Qaeda is behind it. In the meantime today, thousands of ordinary people as well as political and religious leaders, both Christian and Muslim, attended the prelate’s funeral in Karamles. It was celebrated by the Chaldean Patriarch, Card Emmanuel III Delly.

AsiaNews spoke to some of the archbishop’s parishioners still living in this Sunni stronghold. Fadia said: “For us he was the last hope. The fact is that, despite threats and dangers, his standing by us gave us the courage to continue. I don’t know what’s in store for us. I don’t know where we’ll find the strength.”

“The thing about him that was impressed on my mind was his smile,” added Bassam. “Even though he was sick and in danger, he still toured parishes to celebrate Mass and bear witness to show his friendship and faith. Now I am concerned that by striking at him they have tried to strike at the head of our Church in this city.”

General Khaled Abdul Sattar, spokesman for the Iraqi police in Nineveh province, said today that the bishop’s death was the work of al-Qaeda.

Sources close to those involved in the negotiations told AsiaNews that a few days after the abduction they realised that they were dealing with terrorists out to get “money to fund jihad and drive Christians from the country.”

“As days went by, the bishop’s release was never literally mentioned in the phone conversations,” the anonymous sources said. “All they wanted was millions of dollars, weapons and men. They wanted their prisoners freed, but never mentioned him.”

“They did more than that even. In-between insults and the threats, they accused us Christians of not taking sides, of not contributing to Iraq’s liberation. They told us that our presence in the country was worthless; that we were not taking sides or fighting; that for us there was no place here anymore.”

This corroborates what happened in other cases of abduction of priests, namely that the kidnapping industry is not merely about money but is also moved by sectarian considerations.

Monsignor Rahho himself had spoken about a plan to rid the country of its Christians, a plan that was clearly being applied in Mosul since the city is split long confessional lines.

US President George W. Bush yesterday condemned the bishop’s murder. But many young people in Mosul are asking: “Where are the Americans and our government? Where were they when Mgr Rahho was abducted? For a month since the offensive to clean up the city was announced, we see helicopters fly over the city, but by and large there is nothing new happening. Fundamentalism is still running things and the city is beyond the authorities’ control.”

Mgr Rahho was archbishop of Mosul for the past seven years. He was not only a point of reference for the city’s small Chaldean community but also a symbol of dialogue with Muslims.

“He had a lot of friends among Muslim leaders and was directly involved in promoting peaceful co-existence,” said a Mosul man.

He had launched important initiatives which over time had become symbols of ecumenism; one example is the ‘Charity and Joy Brotherhood’ for the disabled. Set up in the St Paul parish in 1986, it spread to the rest of the country involving Catholic churches as well as others.

Today in Iraq Christians from all denominations are mourning the bishop as are doing Muslim religious leaders. Chaldeans in the Diaspora, in Syria for example, are also under shock.

“It is as if a bomb exploded near us. I don’t know if we can get over it this time,” said Farred from Mosul, in Damascus for the past six months.

“My family is still there, but I hope they can get out. I can’t see any future for our community in today’s Iraq.”

Tomorrow in the Syrian capital the Chaldean community will meet in prayer, and the Chaldean archbishop of Aleppo, Mgr Antoine Audo, will celebrate Mass in the Church of St Theresa.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Front Page News; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: bush; catholic; chaldean; iraq

Mourners carry the coffin of Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho, during his funeral in a village outside Mosul in northern Iraq, Friday, March 14, 2008. Rahho, was kidnapped by unknown gunmen two weeks ago, just minutes after performing mass, in Mosul, a city the U.S. military considers the last urban stronghold of al-Qaida in Iraq.


An Iraqi man mourns as he carries a portrait of Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho, during his funeral in a village outside Mosul in northern Iraq, on Friday, March 14, 2008. Rahho,

1 posted on 03/14/2008 10:39:16 AM PDT by NYer
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To: NYer

Christ told us, “But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don’t have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one.” Luke 22:36


2 posted on 03/14/2008 10:41:21 AM PDT by rjsimmon
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To: NYer

Iraqis don’t have a clue as to how big the Christian tourism business could be for them. Very serious dollars, but they have to stop killing Christians to take advantage of the potential revenues.


3 posted on 03/14/2008 10:43:13 AM PDT by TexanToTheCore (If it ain't Rugby or Bullriding, it's for girls.........................................)
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To: rjsimmon

When they build a Cathedral in mecca, then the world will know that they are the rip, oops, rop!


4 posted on 03/14/2008 10:43:36 AM PDT by cameraeye (The Lords Prayer on Obama's Lips? Where's the video?)
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To: Salvation; narses; SMEDLEYBUTLER; redhead; Notwithstanding; nickcarraway; Romulus; ...
Why No United States Outcry over the Kidnapping of Archbishop Rahho?


Funeral Mass for
Martyred Iraqi Chaldean
Archbishop, Paulos Faraj Rahho

Please spread the word and join us 5:00 PM at St. Peter Chaldean Catholic Cathedral - El Cajon, CA

 Friday: March 14 - 2008

for a funeral mass for martyred Iraqi Chaldean Archbishop

 Paulos Faraj Rahho

Mass will be presided by His Excellency Bishop Sarhad Yawsip Jammo, Bishop of the Chaldean rite for Chaldeans and Assyrians in the Western United States.

 

Eastern Catholic Ping List
Please freepmail me if you want on/off this list

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5 posted on 03/14/2008 10:44:30 AM PDT by NYer ("Where the bishop is present, there is the Catholic Church" - Ignatius of Antioch)
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To: NYer

Ann Coulter was right on Sep 13, 2001.


6 posted on 03/14/2008 10:45:10 AM PDT by Incorrigible (If I lead, follow me; If I pause, push me; If I retreat, kill me.)
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To: rjsimmon
When Our Lord spoke those words, swords were the primary infantry combat weapon.

Today? Not so much ...

Skip the sword.

Buy a Kalashnikov.

7 posted on 03/14/2008 10:45:34 AM PDT by ArrogantBustard (Western Civilization is Aborting, Buggering, and Contracepting itself out of existence.)
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To: rjsimmon

Nothing to see here. Only Muslims killing Christians. If any Christians begin killing Muslims, we’ll call you. Until then, go home.


8 posted on 03/14/2008 10:45:47 AM PDT by E. Cartman (Huckaboob will never be Vice President.)
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To: NYer

Our ancestors learned many centuries ago that there are three alternatives when dealing with Islam:

1. Submit

2. Flee

3. Fight

Nothing has changed.


9 posted on 03/14/2008 10:51:19 AM PDT by scory
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To: scory

#3 - kill every man, woman, child and beast.


10 posted on 03/14/2008 11:02:35 AM PDT by svcw (The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.)
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To: NYer
If any of you guys are having a bad day, think for a moment what it's like to be a Christian in a country where Islamic radicals roam loose.

Your day should get better in a hurry.

11 posted on 03/14/2008 11:05:18 AM PDT by marshmallow
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To: rjsimmon; NYer; ArrogantBustard
In context (Luke 22), that verse has a somewhat different feel:

"He said to them, But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don't have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one.

"It is written: 'And he was numbered with the transgressors'; and I tell you that this must be fulfilled in me. Yes, what is written about me is reaching its fulfilment.

"The disciples said, See, Lord, here are two swords. That is enough, he replied."

Seriously, it doesn't look like infantry combat was what He had in mind. Twelve verses later, the action picks up:

"When Jesus' followers saw what was going to happen, they said, Lord, should we strike with our swords?

"And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear.

"But Jesus answered, No more of this! And he touched the man's ear and healed him."

Strange Messiah, that: at two swords, he says "Enough" -- and at one stroke He says, "No more."

Simone Weil perhaps had an insight here:

"Those who take up the sword
will perish by the sword.
And those who do not take up the sword
will perish by the Cross."

Servant of God, Paulos Faraj Rahho -- pray for us.

12 posted on 03/14/2008 11:08:27 AM PDT by Mrs. Don-o (Jesus, my Lord, my God, my All.)
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To: NYer
There are hundreds of thousands of Christians in Iraq even the islamic fascists would have a hard time finding and destroying them.
There are hundreds of thousands of Spirit filled Bible believing Christians in Iraq who know the importance of standing firm and fighting the good fight.
13 posted on 03/14/2008 11:11:32 AM PDT by svcw (The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.)
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To: NYer

I noticed as I surfed the news stories yesterday that statements were pouring out of the Muslim World saying the Archbishop’s death had nothing to do with Islam. (Of course not! /s) It is just more of their propaganda campaign to insist that violence has nothing to do with Islam. (A total fallacy if you read the Qur’an).

I got sidetracked at your link by Samir’s article on Pope Benedict’s response to the 138. It was excellent.


14 posted on 03/14/2008 11:19:08 AM PDT by sageb1 (This is the Final Crusade. There are only 2 sides. Pick one.)
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To: Mrs. Don-o
The disciples said, See, Lord, here are two swords. That is enough, he replied.”

Seriously, it doesn't look like infantry combat was what He had in mind. Twelve verses later, the action picks up:

“When Jesus’ followers saw what was going to happen, they said, Lord, should we strike with our swords?

“And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear.
“But Jesus answered, No more of this! And he touched the man's ear and healed him.”
Strange Messiah, that: at two swords, he says “Enough” — and at one stroke He says, “No more.”

Jesus was fulfilling prophesy here. They couldn't fight in this case because he it was written that he would be arrested, tried, and crucified.

But, if, we had done nothing in WWI, WWII and now, there would not be one Christian left alive. It is written that the gospel would be preached all over the world and that everyone would have a chance to hear it. That would have not been possible, IMO, if we would not have fought for our families and our country.

15 posted on 03/14/2008 11:40:42 AM PDT by Bitsy
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To: Mrs. Don-o
Mrs. Don-o

The context is quite clear. Believers will have to fight to defend themselves against those who would seek to kill us for our faith. Jesus did not defend himself because he was the lamb to be slain for our sin. Blameless and without spot.

We however, can (and should) carry the sword. This is not to force the gospel, but to defend it. The ratio is quite certain, 2 of the 12 were armed, with the strongest among them (at least in Peter's case) being the ones to bear arms. Jesus knew who had weapons and walked with them every day for more than 3 years.

Strange Messiah, that: at two swords, he says "Enough" -- and at one stroke He says, "No more."

Nothing strange about it. He was not to be charged with assaulting the Temple guards in any way, so as to remain blameless.
16 posted on 03/14/2008 12:03:34 PM PDT by rjsimmon
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To: Bitsy

It has always been a difficult situation. A country’s leader has the responsibility to defend his people, and the Church has always taught that there are just wars. And individuals can certainly defend themselves and others.

However, the interesting thing in the situation with Peter is that Jesus was not telling Peter that he could not defend himself with the sword, but that he should not defend Jesus with the sword. In other words, for us, the “jihad” is forbidden. The blood of martyrs is the seed of the Church, and I think that is how we have to look at it.

The Christians of Iraq should not take up arms against the Muslims. However, beyond that, it’s ambiguous.

The early Church forbade Christians to seek martyrdom; they were supposed to avoid it if possible, but not to renounce Christ if martyrdom came to them. But this was also accompanied by preaching and by support from other Christians, and I think the thing that is lacking to the Christians of Iraq is (a) any serious effort outside of Iraq to convert Muslims and (b) support from Christians outside of Iraq.


17 posted on 03/14/2008 12:11:57 PM PDT by livius
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To: TexanToTheCore
Iraqis don’t have a clue as to how big the Christian tourism business could be for them.

What to they care. The PA have already killed the "goose that laid the golden egg" so to speak in Bethlehem.

18 posted on 03/14/2008 12:13:00 PM PDT by Tamar1973 (Riding the Korean Wave, one recipe at a time http://www.youtube.com/Tamar1973)
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To: Bitsy; rjsimmon; livius
My point is this: Be careful to read Scripture in context. I remember, too, that Jesus said that each one of us was to take our cross and follow Him: so though Jesus' self-oblation as God-Man was unique, it is also our example and pattern of life.

Matthew 10:38
Anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.

I'm not preaching pacifism here. My 18 year old son has just signed up for the Marine Reserve,and I support him. However, as I look at Jesus I realize that there is something greater than the Marine Corps here.

19 posted on 03/14/2008 12:42:12 PM PDT by Mrs. Don-o (Semper Fi)
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To: NYer
Fears are growing that the community might cease to exist. Iraqi police blame al-Qaeda for the murder. Islamist terrorists plan to run Christians out of the country.

Sounds like the Chaldeans better start packing AK's.

20 posted on 03/14/2008 12:45:00 PM PDT by Centurion2000 (su - | echo "All your " | chown -740 us ./base | kill -9 | cd / | rm -r | echo "belong to us")
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To: NYer

Prayers for Archbishop Rahho.


21 posted on 03/14/2008 12:58:33 PM PDT by Gene Eric
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To: livius
The blood of martyrs is the seed of the Church, and I think that is how we have to look at it.
Even when the early Christians in Jerusalem went deep under ground not only did they make many rooms and passage ways but also booby traps to kill those who would come after them to kill them. Am I wrong to be angered at who dismember and torture men, women and children at will? Am I wring not to care if they live? Would I be wrong in my faith to kill one who was coming to kill me?
22 posted on 03/14/2008 1:07:44 PM PDT by Bitsy
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To: Centurion2000
Sounds like the Chaldeans better start packing AK's

Packing is one thing. Using them in good conscience is another. And worse, using them with out the support of Europe or the United States is quite the problem.

23 posted on 03/14/2008 1:31:13 PM PDT by LoneRangerMassachusetts
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