Iraqi Christians in Tel Esqof were able to celebrate Easter in a church for the first time since 2014. Although the church was damaged, Christians felt more hopeful about returning to a safer environment as coalition forces continue to push back ISIS. Many of the Christians celebrating Easter do not live in Tel Esqof. They are still waiting for Mosul’s liberation, but continue to find hope in events like their Easter celebration.
04/17/2017 Pakistan (NDTV) – Hundreds of Iraqi Christians gathered on Sunday in a church damaged by ISIS north of Mosul, celebrating Easter there for the first time since 2014.
“God willing, the celebration of the resurrection of Christ will also mark the return and rising-up of the Christians in Iraq,” said Kyriacos Isho, 75, who was accompanied by his 12 children and grandchildren at Mar Gewargis (St George) Chaldean Catholic church in Tel Esqof.
Tel Esqof, or Bishop’s Hill in Arabic, did not sustain the same amount of damage as other Christian towns overrun by the terrorists three years ago in the plain of Nineveh.
Kurds dislodged the hardline Sunni terrorists from Tel Esqof just a week after it had fallen, in August 2014. On Sunday, they stood guard around the church.
The terrorists had smashed the church’s windows, though a new cross has now been put up in place of the one the terrorists took down.Aftab Gill, information secretary of the Christian, Masiha Millat Party, later said the prosecutor was removed from the case by the Punjab law office.