A Tale of Two Springs

Facilitating peace, development and banking in Mosul, Iraq

Christmas in Mosul

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A few weeks ago a Chaldean Christian man told me the story of an Iraqi rabbi who spoke to a Chaldean priest one Saturday about 60 years ago. At that time, Iraq was an increasingly dangerous place for Jewish communities that had been here for centuries. “Our holy day is Saturday, and they are coming for us,” the rabbi reportedly said. “Don’t forget that tomorrow is your holy day.” Shortly thereafter, nearly all of Iraq’s Jewish communities fled.

Iraqi Shiite Muslim women from the Sadr movement light candles for Sayidat al-Nejat Catholic Cathedral victims

Today I am Jewish in a Muslim country on Christmas. It is not an easy time to be Christian in Iraq. Every few days there are reports of attacks in this region, attempted murders or kidnappings of the Christian minority. Two months ago a dramatic attack in a Baghdad church killed over 50.

Iraqi Christians, who trace their lineage here back to the ancient Assyrians and Babylonians, say that there were nearly 1.5 million Christians living peacefully in Iraq prior to 2003. Today they believe there are less than 500,000.

Please keep in your thoughts and prayers today the Chaldean, Assyrian and Syriac communities of Iraq. In the face of terroristic violence and caught in the middle of ethno-religious conflict, it is unclear whether they can or will remain here.

There is no religious war in Iraq. Iraqi Sunni Arab, Shia Arab, Christian and Kurdish leaders state a clear commitment to protecting Christians against violence. We have seen numerous individual Muslim acts to protect, to honor and to mourn Christian Iraqis. They are acts that the world should see on this Christmas. It is a war of lunatic murderers, and Iraqis are uniting against it. In whatever way we can, we should join them.

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Written by treadingupthetigris

December 25, 2010 at 6:46 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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