ICC Note: The Christian communities of the Middle East have found themselves in a situation where their very existence in the lands that have been their homes for nearly two thousand years are threatened. They are rightfully looking for political leaders to restore peace and justice, but more importantly are looking for Christians around the world to identify in solidarity with them.
01/07/2016 Middle East (Tablet) The head of the Syriac Catholic Church has asked Pope Francis to call a world summit at the Vatican to address the persecution of Christians in the Middle East.
Patriarch Ignatius Joseph III Younan of Antioch and All the East (pictured below) said that the “very survival” of Christians, living “in the cradle of our faith”, is at stake. The patriarch called on the Pope to invite UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, US Secretary of State John Kerry and other leading diplomats and church leaders to the proposed summit.
Speaking in Rome last month, he said the meeting could address the “emptying of the region of its Christian communities” due to violence and intimidation. He felt “Christians around the world” should be greatly concerned and the Western nations should do more to protect and defend them.