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Libya: no damage to churches, says bishop

Catholic World News - February 22, 2011

Members of Libya’s small Catholic community are not taking part in the uprising against the regime of Muammar al-Gaddafi, the nation’s leading prelate says.

“The Catholic community has not met with any particular difficulties,” said Bishop Giovanni Innocenzo Martinelli, apostolic vicar of Tripoli. “Many of the faithful go into our churches to pray for peace. The two churches in Tripoli and Benghazi have not suffered any damages. The different communities of religious sisters working in hospitals in Cyrenaica [the eastern coastal region] are busy treating those wounded in clashes.”

1.8% of the nation’s 6.7 million people are Catholic, according to Vatican statistics. The nation has six parishes.

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