Middle East: Baghdad priest describes hope amid pain following recent attacks
We all had such hope that things were changing for the better; we still hope and pray that is the case. Today at Church there was pain, fear but also hope.
By Matthew Davies and Lisa B. Hamilton
February 5th, 2008 Iraq (ankawa.com)-The minister at Iraq s last remaining Anglican church says it is difficult to describe the pain in Baghdad coordinated attacks that left at least 100 people dead and more than 200 wounded.
The [se] atrocities and how they were carried out are just too terrible to take in, the Rev. Canon Andrew White, Anglican priest at St. Georges Memorial Church in Baghdad , writes in an email to Episcopal News Service. We all had such hope that things were changing for the better; we still hope and pray that is the case. Today at Church there was pain, fear but also hope.
Known as the English vicar of Baghdad , White routinely wears bullet-proof clothes and is escorted to St. Georges by a brigade of the Iraqi Special Forces, complete with guns and armored cars.
He estimates that 90 percent of Iraq s Christians, who once numbered more than a million, have fled or been murdered by Islamic extremists during the religious civil war.
Some are kidnapped, says White. Here in this church, all of my leadership was originally taken and killed. This is one of the problems. I regularly do funerals here, but its not easy to get the bodies.