Prayers for Peace in Middle East
Last Sunday, 20 July 2014, Pope Francis called on all the faithful to pray for the Christians fleeing the Iraqi city of Mosul, and to persevere in prayer for those situations of tension and conflict that continue in different parts of the world, especially in the Middle East and in the Ukraine.”
On 22 July, the United Nations Security Council denounced the persecution of Christians and other minority groups in northern Iraq, which used to be home to minority communities that had lived together for hundreds of years before coming under direct attack by the group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and its allies.
In a press statement, the UNSC condemned “in the strongest terms the systematic persecution of individuals from minority populations and those who refuse its extremist ideology in Iraq by ISIL and associated armed groups.”
(full text here)
Cardinal Newman’s prayer “Grant us a safe lodging, a holy rest and peace at the last” seems particularly urgent and necessary for many troubled parts of our world. Some of these situations get a mention in daily news reports but many other situations – like the Syrian refugee camps in Lebanon and Jordan – no longer seem to feature on the headlines. Two pages are available at the link below to shape a time of quiet prayer at 12:00noon or at 18:00hrs.
This might be your way of pausing in solidarity with those who suffer in different communities around the Middle East and elsewhere. Might you print off the English or Irish version for your fridge door? Please remember a prayer for those who have neither fridges, food, shelter nor peace in their communities.