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Vatican cardinal: Middle East Christians called to love enemies amid persecution

Catholic World News - June 19, 2013

Reflecting on love for enemies, the prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches prayed that God might “render Eastern Christians [in the Middle East] strong and meek, filling them with the consolation of the faith, along with all those who partake in their tragic fate.”

“When one thinks of the vortex of violence - as unceasing as it is irrational - which has struck our brothers and sisters in Syria and Iraq, as well as of the tension threatening in the Holy Land, in Egypt, and in other places in the Middle East, one cannot avoid the fully paradoxical nature, from a human point of view, of the Gospel’s command,” Cardinal Leonardo Sandri preached in a homily at the beginning of the annual meeting of the Reunion of the Aid Agencies for the Oriental Churches (ROACO).

“I think of the understandable temptation for Christians to combat adversity with methods other than those of humble trust in Divine Providence, which, obviously, works through dialogue and every other possible initiative directed at safeguarding the right to religious liberty and safety for all, including the smallest ecclesial communities, which need to be guaranteed the right to participate fully in the civil life of their respective countries,” he continued.

“We are to be the interpreters of their suffering before every organ of ecclesial and civil government, with the humble resolve that ought to characterize ecclesial speech and action,” Cardinal Sandri added. “The public denouncement of the unbearable conditions of their life must be accompanied by our very concrete solicitude to alleviate them.”

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  • Posted by: jg23753479 - Jun. 19, 2013 7:33 AM ET USA

    “The public denouncement of the unbearable conditions of their life must be accompanied by our very concrete solicitude to alleviate them.” What public denouncement? No where in this article do I see even the smallest mention of the NAME of the persecutors of these Christians in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Egypt, and I can count on one hand the denunciations of these thugs by Christians in the West in any given month. Now, let's see, who could it be? Those darned Methodists up to no good once again?

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