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On Good Friday, Remember the Ongoing Suffering of Your Brothers and Sisters in Iraq

March 30, 2018 by Brian in

For the first time since ISIS drove all the Christians from Iraq’s Nineveh Plain in 2014, the Christian town of Qaraqosh celebrates Easter after many of its families have returned. On this Good Friday, we visit Qaraqosh to meet with Christians there. Today we meet with Adrian (20), who shares the ongoing suffering of Iraqi Christians and asks you to stand with him in prayer.

Adrian is 20 years old and lives in Qaraqosh, Iraq. He is one of the 25,000 Christians who returned there last year. Recently, he works in an optician shop in one of Qaraqosh’s shopping streets.

We speak with him on the square of the iconic Tahira Church in Qaraqosh, one of the largest churches in the Middle East. This courtyard was used by ISIS as a shooting range, a training ground for new terrorists. The marble pillars of the church are riddled with bullets and still remain as silent witnesses to ISIS’ hate of Christianity and the cross.

There has been a lot of focus on ISIS in the international media the last few years. But on this Good Friday—the day where Christians all around the world remember Jesus’ suffering—this young believer points out that Christians in Iraq already are under pressure long before ISIS came, and that they still feel threatened today. “So, suffering is something that Iraqi Christians can identify with, very easily.”

Christians are kidnapped, hurt and killed

Adrian paints a broader picture of decades of pressure on Christians from Qaraqosh. “For example, during the war between Iraq and Iran in the nineteen-eighties, many people from Qaraqosh were captured or killed. We still feel the effects of that in our community,” he says.

There is a museum in the center of Qaraqosh, where all the killed and disappeared soldiers from the village are remembered. Several of Adrian’s relatives are among them.

“But also more recently: from 2003 up until today, Christians are getting kidnapped, hurt and killed all the time,” he says. “Especially in cities like Mosul and Bagdad. Just earlier this month, three Christians were stabbed to death in Baghdad.”

Stand with Adrian this Easter

The message this young Christian has on his heart to share with us is that living here as a Christian in Iraq will always be a challenge. “Just realize that,” is what he asks.

“And yet,” he says. “My grandparents, my family, myself; we are still here. Still standing. Can I ask you to stand with us in your prayers this Easter? Because we want to remain here. Thank you very much.”

6 responses to “In Iraq, Returning Christians Share an Easter Message of New Life”

  1. Praise to you, children of our almighty God: Father, Jesus, Holy Spirit. Blessing to you strong men and women and children of Iraq. May our Lord God Almighty continue walking you through Victory. Amen. We will all suffer for His sake and He suffered for ours. Your Victory is so uplifting as I read this the morning between our Friday evening service at my church and tomorrow’s Easter Celebration. Halleluiah, He Has Risen and He will win. As I write this, the Jews of Israel are being threatened at their borders with might mobs of Muslins. They need your prayers, too. Through His love I send mine. Patricia

  2. Praise God! Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is risen! Death and Hell is defeated and our sins forgiven! Christians in the middle East have been persecuted heavily these past few years! Little or no help from the outside world being offered or given! This story of one small church offers a glimmer of hope that says our Lord is forever triumphant over the evil that still persists in that part of the world! Our prayers are with them!

  3. I would like to receive the updates of this church and Iraqi town bringing hope to residents returning. We can really learn from this church how we can build up OUR churches.

  4. God Bless you all. You are showing the world that Christ exists and will until the end of time!!! Father George, speak to our Christian President Trump. He will help your people.

  5. Wow that is so encouraging to see and hear. Over the years since ISIS displaced people in Iraq I have prayed and I will continue to pray for Heaven on earth in Iraq displayed through its brave and courageous citizens. God bless you.

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