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Two churches in Iraq were attacked on Sunday, September 24.

In the Karrada neighbourhood of Baghdad, a bomb was set off under the parish priest's car outside the Assyrian Orthodox Church of St. Mary at approximately 9:30 a.m. As a crowd gathered, another bomb exploded nearby, killing a church watchman and injuring several others. The motivation behind the attack is unknown.

In Mosul, the Chaldean Church of the Holy Spirit was targeted twice within three days. On September 24, approximately eighty shots were fired at the church, breaking windows and causing minor damage to the building. On September 26, a group of men fired rockets at the building and set off an explosive device outside an unused door of the building. There were no injuries in either attack. It is believed that both attacks may be by the same group.

Tensions between Christians and Muslims in Iraq have been particularly high since comments by the Pope in Regensburg, Germany and some have suggested a connection with these attacks. Flyers have been distributed demanding that Christians condemn the Pope's comments or face violence. The Chaldean bishop of Mosul has put up posters stating, "Neither Iraqi Christians nor the Pope want to destroy ties with Muslims."

Pray that believers in Iraq will set Christ apart as Lord and not be controlled by fear (1 Peter 3:14-17). Ask God to bring comfort to the family of the watchman who was killed (1 Corinthians 15:50-58, 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18). Pray that the persecutors will open their hearts to the love of Christ as Saul did (Acts 9:1-19).

For more information on the violence facing Iraqi Christians, click here.

Current Ministry Project

By working with credible ministry partners, VOMC is providing persecuted Christian women sewing skills training so they can receive a sustainable source of income and thus adequately support their families. In addition, these women are able to seize the opportunities presented to them through their new businesses by serving as effective witnesses for Christ.

Project Fund: Women’s Ministry

Country Information

Population
39,650,145 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Arab (75-80), Kurdish (15-20), Turkoman, Assyrian, and other (5)

Religion (%)
Islam (95-98), Christianity (1), other (1-4)

Leader
President Barham Salih (2018)

Government type
Federal parliamentary republic

Legal system

Mixed legal system of civil and Islamic law

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Iraq

Pray for the protection of the remaining believers in Iraq during this time of upheaval and danger. May many churches and Christian relief organizations seize the opportunity to provide greatly needed assistance and ministry to the numerous suffering people of this war-torn nation. As God’s work of healing, provision and restoration takes place, pray that a stable democratic government will be established.

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Iraq News

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