Christians in the West have played a crucial role in reviving communities in Iraq ravaged by extremists in the ancient Nineveh Plains – according to a Church leader who has helped pioneer their resettlement in towns and villages which have been their home for thousands of years.
With latest reports stating that about half of the inhabitants have gone back to the Christian-majority town of Qaraqosh (Baghdeda), Fr. George Jahola said: “a lot” of people were now returning there from Lebanon and Turkey as well as from Erbil and other displacement centers in Iraq.
Five Christian converts and two children from Iran were attacked last month in a refugee camp in Greece and told to leave as “this is a Muslim camp”.
Following the incident, which took place on Sunday 24 June in a camp near the city of Larissa, about 360km northwest of the capital Athens, an aid worker says there should be more protection for religious minorities among refugees as they are “extremely vulnerable”.
Pope Repeats Call to Welcome Migrants
Pope Francis in his January 14, 2018, homily on World Day of Migrants and Refugees repeated his call for Christians to welcome migrants, refugees and asylum seekers.
He referred to his message for World Day of Migrants and Refugees: “Every stranger who knocks at our door is an opportunity for an encounter with Jesus Christ, who identifies with the welcomed and rejected strangers of every age (Mt 25:35, 43).”
The Holy Father stressed his three essential points in addressing refugees: to protect, to promote and to integrate.” He said doing this requires that Christians must “welcome, know, and acknowledge” new arrivals.
ICOLF Director of MENA, Geoffrey Strickland, as well as Professors Jane Adolphe and Kevin Govern, were featured speakers at the Expert Meeting on relevant issues concerning the preparation of the Global Compacts on Migrants and Refugees within the United Nations System, kindly organized by Msgr. Piotr Mazurkiewicz at the Cardinal Stefan Wyszynski University in Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland, December 3rd – 4th.
Later at the same conference, Professor Adolphe spoke to Issues Concerning The Human Rights of Migrants Approach Per Se.