Pray and Act for Christians in Iraq

The following was sent by the executive committee of the Fellowship of the Middle East Evangelical Churches. I received it last night. It specifically asks for prayer on November 9 (today) but prayer is always in order. It also asks us to contact our elected officials on behalf of the Christians of Iraq. Here's a prayer from a group who met with Iraqi Presbyterians in Syria a few weeks ago. Other prayers for those affected by the war in Iraq are available. Finally, here's a bulletin insert asking prayer for Christians in Iraq.

November 6, 2008

A Call for Prayer for Solidarity with the Christians in Iraq,
From the Fellowship of Middle East Evangelical Churches

We, like all others, are appalled at the news coming from Iraq about the systematic killing, terrifying, and expelling of Christians from their homes in Mosul. It is reported about two thousand Christian families have been displaced from Mosul. due to the terror and violence they suffered. They fled their houses with only what they could carry; many fled with the only the clothes on their backs. Moreover, about twenty have been killed thus far, churches have been destroyed or burnt, and the atrocity goes on. So far, we have heard from many reputable voices, many of those voices came from notable Muslim leaders, condemning and denouncing what is occurring in Mosul. However, we have not heard of any definite steps or any plan of actions taken on behalf of these Christians for their safety and protection.

Therefore, as the Fellowship of Middle East Evangelical Churches,

We call upon ALL the churches in the Middle East and to our partners and sister churches around the globe to dedicate the second Sunday in November to bring attention to the plight of Christians in Iraq, and to pray for their relief. We hope that as our prayers are raised we shall be alert from this moment on to the plight of our brothers and sisters. Therefore, we humbly ask that you join us on November 9 to offer unified prayer as part of the shared worship of Christ's people everywhere.

We call upon All the churches around the world to raise this issue with their respective governments, decision-makers, and responsible organizations with political influence in their respective countries. Iraqi Christians are fearful that they have become a commodity in the political marketplace. We are sensitive as we remember the massacres of Armenians and Syriac people at the outset of the 20th Century. Today this becomes an issue of conscience that our Lord compels us to speak out on behalf of the cries of these beleaguered people.

We urge all Christians to partner with our brothers and sisters in Iraq. The Fellowship of Middle East Evangelical Churches has already sent a letter of deep support and encouragement to them; we have contacted our respective governments bringing these issues to light. We invite you to join us in demanding their protected return to their rightful land and homes, and guaranteeing their safety and well-being.

Despite frequent persecution, Christians of the Middle East have through the ages contributed to the building and development of their countries, furthered the values of freedom, justice, and democracy. The alternative is religious fanaticism, confessional division and neo-apartheid.

May the Lord bless you and give you the courage to act prophetically as his people and the witness of his justice. Amen.

On behalf of FMEEC Executive Committee:

Bishop Munib A Younan, Presiden

Rev. Dr. Habib Badr, Vice President

Mrs. Rosangela Jarjour, General Secretary

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