Iraqi Christians mark one year in Jordan after fleeing their homes

Iraqi Christians mark one year in Jordan after fleeing their homes

By Rula Samain – Aug 09,2015 – JORDAN TIMES

Iraqi Christians attend an ecumenical prayer held at the Latin Church in Fuheis, 20km northwest of Amman, on Saturday (Photo by Nader Daoud)

FUHEIS — Iraqi Christians who were forced to leave their country marked a year in Jordan away from their homes in an ecumenical prayer on Saturday.

“Life is hard on us. It has been like that ever since we were forcefully asked to leave our homeland, but we are thankful for Jordan’s kind hospitality,” said Firyal Bulous, a 48-year-old Iraqi said at the ceremony, which was organised by Caritas Jordan at the Latin Church in Fuheis.

Father Imad Alamat, a Latin Church priest, told The Jordan Times, that the ceremony is meant to bring all Christians of Jordan together and help make Iraqi Christians feel safe and at home “far away from home”.

“We, the church, feel responsible towards the Iraqis who were forced to leave their country with nothing but the clothes on their backs. They are the result of religious hatred and segregation,” said Alamat.

Leading Latin clergy took part in the prayers, including Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem Fouad Twal, Chaldean Catholic Patriarch of Babylon Louis Raphael I Sako, and Italian Bishops’ Conference Secretary General Archbishop Nunzio Galantino.

The Christians fled Iraq after the Daesh terror group took over their towns in Mosul, making them choose between converting to Islam, paying a special tax, or death.

A displaced Iraqi family that resided in Marj Al Hamam has emigrated to Australia, according to Father Mohammad George Sharaiha. 

The Balbol Family was the first to leave, which raises the concern of a Middle East empty of Christians.

He said that while escorting the family of six to the airport, the fear for the Middle East dawned on him.

“Christian presence is now at risk of disappearing gradually. A Middle East without Christians is an immeasurable loss,” Sharaiha told The Jordan Times.

 

He said that in his church, Saint Elias Melkite Greek Catholic Church, over 20 families are residing, waiting to emigrate to the West

– See more at: http://www.jordantimes.com/news/local/iraqi-christians-mark-one-year-jordan-after-fleeing-their-homes#sthash.BBVUzci3.dpuf

Categories: Arab World, Asia, Iraq, Jordan

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