Monday, January 28, 2013

In the Middle East, the Arab spring has given way to a Christian winter

Tribulation Times


January 29, 2013   

(1Co 12:26-27) And if one member suffer any thing, all the members suffer with it: or if one member glory, all the members rejoice with it. Now you are the body of Christ and members of member. 


POPE BENEDICT XVI:  "Many of you come from areas where Christians, as individuals and communities, face painful trials and difficulties which are a source of deep concern to us all. Through you, I would like to assure all the faithful of the Middle East of my spiritual closeness and my prayer that this land, so important in God’s plan of salvation, may be led, through constructive dialogue and cooperation, to a future of justice and lasting peace. All Christians need to work together in mutual acceptance and trust in serving the cause of peace and justice in fidelity to the Lord’s will. May the example and intercession of the countless martyrs and saints who down the ages have borne courageous witness to Christ in all our Churches, sustain and strengthen all of us in meeting the challenges of the present with confidence and hope in the future which the Lord is opening before us. Upon you, and upon all those associated with the work of the Commission, I cordially invoke a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit’s gifts of wisdom, joy and peace".

CRISIS MAGAZINEObama Ignores the Fears of Middle Eastern Christians

ACNHelping the helpless in Syria


People escaping violence and oppression in Syria are to receive urgent help from leading Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), which is making a series of grants across a region now gripped by a bitter winter.

ACN has approved an initial aid package of $207,100 to provide food, blankets and medicine for people struggling in below-freezing temperatures.

The aid, bound for refugees and displaced people in Syria, Jordan and Lebanon, will be distributed through parishes and dioceses, with the expectation of more ACN help to come.

ACN’s announcement on Thursday, Jan. 24th builds on significant emergency help for the region given at regular intervals during 2012, when Christians and others were caught in the cross-fire and suffered deliberate attacks on their communities. 

In making the latest round of aid payments, ACN has responded to appeals for help amid reports of up to four million people in Syria alone lacking food, shelter and clothes.

ACN projects staff reported receiving requests for aid from the northern Syrian city of Aleppo, which has suffered months of violence, and the so-called Valley of Christians (Wadi al-Nasara) near Homs, where the situation facing displaced people is of great concern. 

With Vatican reports within the past month stating that more than 500,000 people have been fleeing Syria, refugee camps in Lebanon and Jordan are struggling to cope with the influx of people and need more help, especially in the winter months.

ACN Middle East projects coordinator Fr. Andrzej Halemba described the situation as “increasingly critical,” adding that “the cold is hitting the people hard.”

He said, “Syria’s Christians live in fear. We get reports about how much the people are suffering from the fighting.”

“The tension is almost unbearable. Syria’s Christians do not have any prospects and their future in their own country is uncertain.”

“They rely totally on the Church. That’s why it’s so important to distribute the aid through the structures of the Church.”


REVIEWIn the Middle East, the Arab spring has given way to a Christian winter



Egyptian court sentences Christian family to 15 years for converting from Islam
Jerusalem bishop: "Syria sexual violence must end"
Persecution of Christians: natural effect of the Arab Spring
Iran sentences American pastor Saeed Abedini to 8 years in prison

OF INTERESTRace to save the language of Jesus: Aramaic in danger of becoming extinct as  number of speakers of ancient tongue plummets

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

26. I think that, according to what our Lord makes known to me, He does not wish to take away from you these feelings contrary to the virtue of humility; He leaves you something to fight against, so that He may reward your victories; and also, that you may be continually on your guard and have a great distrust of yourself.

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