Photo Credit: Cyprus and the Gulf
[Diocese of Cyprus and the Gulf] The staff and community of St George’s Church in the heart of Baghdad have long been in the midst of some of the worst sectarian violence and terrorism in the Middle East. However in recent days there have been horrifying, almost daily, terrorist attacks throughout the country, killing many and wounding hundreds more.
Bishop Michael and his wife Julia visited St George’s Baghdad in July this year, and he writes, "It’s undoubtedly true that violence has spiked alarmingly in the past six months or more in Iraq. It’s mainly Sunni-on-Shi’a but there’s also Shi’a-on-Sunni attacks. Christians of all denominations get caught up sometimes and of course our congregation at St George’s is rarely untouched by the terror and fear and not least the constant disruption of daily life. The situation is evil and desperately sad, and indeed prayer is the appropriate response and call."
Despite these dreadful circumstances, the life and work of St George’s, led by Canon Andrew White and Father Faiz Jerjes, goes on; the Mothers' Union continues to help thousands in the congregation and local community in Baghdad with gifts of food and necessities, family celebrations continue unabated and the children regularly sing of the Joy of the Lord with amazing sincerity and certainty.
We ask for your earnest prayers for protection and provision for Canon Andrew and Father Faiz, for the staff of the clinic and school at St George’s Baghdad and for their congregation who daily lean on Jesus in ways that many of us simply cannot imagine. And please pray too for the country and people of Iraq; that the delicate ongoing reconciliation efforts involving the various factions bear fruit and overcome this tide of violence.
Donations for St George’s Baghdad can be made here.