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A wave of violence hit 17 cities in Iraq recently, claiming around 70 lives. Included in the attacks was the bombing of a church building in Kirkuk, marking the second round of assaults against the city's Christian community in recent weeks. On August 15 at 1:20 a.m., a bomb tore through one of the walls of the Syriac Orthodox Church of Mar Afram. Thankfully, no Christians were killed in the attack, but police have announced higher protective measures for Kirkuk's churches.

Earlier in the month, three other churches were targeted by insurgents. While police were able to disarm bombs near two of the churches, a third bomb detonated in front of the Holy Family Syriac Catholic Church.

About 334,000 Christians remain in Iraq, less than half of their number in 1991. The violence has caused hundreds of thousands of Iraqi people, both Muslim and Christian, to leave the country, and many more are displaced inside Iraq, particularly in Kurdistan.

Pray for the church in Iraq. Pray they will keep their eyes on Jesus, persevere in their faith, and not grow weary or lose heart (Hebrews 10:32-39; 12:1-3). Pray He will comfort and strengthen the many who are grieving. Ask him to intervene in the lives of Christians in Iraq to protect and preserve them.

Please visit the Iraq Country Report for more on the trials facing believers in Iraq.

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

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)

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

  • Oppression of Iraqi Believers
    Man's hands holding a gospel tract
    Those caught evangelizing could face blasphemy charges.
    Photo: VOMC

    A recent report from the American Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East highlights the desperate circumstances facing many Iraqi Christians – both those residing in their country as well as those living as refu

  • Aid Workers Released
    Devastation from the war
    Some of the devastation
    from the conflict in Iraq.
    Photo: World Watch Monitor

    On January 20th, four humanitarian aid workers from the French organization, SOS Chretiens d'Orient, went missing while in Baghdad. Details were limited, providing no information on those responsible nor the reasons behind

  • Four Foreign Aid Workers Missing
    Devastation in Iraq
    Some of the devastation from the conflict in Iraq.
    Photo: World Watch Monitor

    On January 20th, four workers affiliated with the French organization, SOS Chretiens d'Orient, went missing while in Baghdad. Despite repeated attempts to contact them, no response has been received to date. At last report

  • Families Again Forced to Flee Hometown

    Hilla, Iraq

    Hundreds of Iraqi Christian families had recently returned to their hometown of Teleskuf, after being displaced for years due to attacks perpetrated by the self-proclaimed Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist group, only to be forced to flee their northern Iraq community all over again. These families hav