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Pope laments persecution of Iraq’s Christians, appeals for peace

Catholic World News - July 21, 2014

Following the conclusion of his July 20 Angelus address, Pope Francis lamented the persecution of Christians in Mosul, Iraq’s 2nd-largest city.

“I have learned with concern the news which reaches us from the Christian communities of Mosul and from other places in the Middle East, where since the beginning of Christianity, they have lived alongside their fellow citizens, making a significant contribution to the good of society,” he said. “Today they are persecuted, they are driven away, they have to leave their homes without the possibility of taking anything with them. To these families, to these people, I want to express my closeness and assure them of my constant prayer.”

“Beloved brothers and sisters who are so persecuted, I know how much you are suffering, I know that you have been stripped of everything,” he added. “I am with you in the faith of Him who has conquered evil!”

The Pontiff asked those gathered in St. Peter’s Square to join him in praying for the Middle East’s Christians and for “those situations of tension and conflict that continue in different parts of the world, especially in the Middle East and in the Ukraine.”

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