Skip to comments.Catholic, Orthodox patriarchs visit Irbil to support displaced Iraqis
Posted on 08/21/2014 2:33:46 PM PDT by NYer
BEIRUT (CNS) -- A delegation of Catholic and Orthodox patriarchs visited Irbil, Iraq, to show their support and solidarity with the more than 100,000 Christians and minorities displaced in the country by the advance of Islamist militants.
Lebanese Cardinal Bechara Rai, patriarch of the Maronite Catholics, said the Aug. 20 trip was "a first step in the implementation of the statement issued by the patriarchs," referring to a special summit Aug. 7 to address the crisis facing Christians in Iraq and Syria.
ebanese Cardinal Bechara Rai, the patriarch of Maronite Catholics who headed a delegation of Catholic and Orthodox patriarchs to Iraq Aug. 20, blesses a baby in Irbil. (CNS/Courtesy Maronite Patriarchate)
Catholic / Orthodox ping!
Save Thy people, O Lord,
and bless Thine inheritance.
Grant victory to Thy Church over her enemies,
and protect Thy people by Thy Holy Cross!
Prayer for Iraq
O God, who art the unsearchable abyss of peace,
the ineffable sea of love, the fountain of blessings
and the bestower of affection,
who sendest peace to those that receive it;
Open to us this day the sea of thy love
and water us with plenteous streams
from the riches of thy grace
and from the most sweet springs of thy kindness.
Make us children of quietness and heirs of peace,
enkindle in us the fire of thy love;
sow in us thy fear;
strengthen our weakness by thy power;
bind us closely to thee and to each other
in our firm and indissoluble bond of unity:
Syrian Clementine Liturgy (in: For all God’s people; p. 73)
The full text of Patriarch Sako’s prayer for peace follows:
The plight of our country
is deep and the suffering of Christians
is severe and frightening.
Therefore, we ask you Lord
to spare our lives, and to grant us patience,
and courage to continue our witness of Christian values
with trust and hope.
Lord, peace is the foundation of life;
Grant us the peace and stability that will enable us
to live with each other without fear and anxiety,
and with dignity and joy.
Glory be to you forever. Amen.
Litany for Iraq
For lasting peace in this ancient land – From you, O Lord.
For wisdom and compassion for all in authority – From you, O Lord.
For comfort for families separated or bereaved – From you, O Lord.
For the release of captives – From you, O Lord.
For safety and security for minority communities.
For refreshment for the weary and healing for the sick – From you, O Lord.
For continuing faithfulness of the ancient churches of this land – From you, O Lord.
For tenacity of spirit for small Christian groups – From you, O Lord.
For the mutual enrichment and support of those of different Christian traditions – From you, O Lord.
You, Lord of all, we confess;
You, Lord Jesus, we glorify;
For you are the life of our bodies
And you are the Saviour of our souls.
The response in the litany and this hymn both come from the Chaldean liturgy. The ancient hymn celebrates Christ the source of resurrection in all situations of death and deprivation. (in: With All God’s People, p. 21, 22)
Father God, Our Savior and King,
We come to You in despair over the evil being done to our Middle East Christian brothers and sisters. We ask that You would put Your hand of protection upon them and that You would sustain them as You did the Israelites in the desert. Lord, cause our brothers and sisters to cry out to You for help and show them the peace that only You can give in answer to their needs. In their darkest moments, Lord, keep them, strengthen them, and comfort them. When they despair that no one is coming to help them, Lord, reveal Your glory and restore their souls.
We ask you these things in the blessed name of Your precious son, Jesus Christ.