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Pope urges Christians in Middle East to remain, 'despite sacrifices'

Catholic World News - June 25, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI said that he would encourage the Christians living in the Middle East “to keep the faith and, despite numerous sacrifices, stay in the land were they were born.” He urged the Christians who had emigrated from the region “not to forget their origins, especially their religious origions.”

The Holy Father made these remarks in a June 25 talk to representatives of the Aid Agencies for the Oriental Churches (ROACO). He thanked the group for helping to maintain the Christian presence in the region, as well as for help in preparing for the October meeting of the Synod for the Middle East.

The Pope drew attention in his remarks to the “Christians who suffer violence because of the Gospel,” especially in the Middle East. He said that world leaders have a duty to promote the rights of religious minorities and the security of all believers.

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