Synod: Jordan’s Chaldean Vicar

VATICAN CITY — Father Raymond Mousalli, Chaldean Catholic Patriarchal Vicar in Jordan and a member of the Special Assembly for the Middle East of the Synod of Bishops, will meet with members of the press today, 18 October, from 3 to 4 p.m. at the Istituto Maria SS. Bambina, Via Paulo VI, No. 21, which runs along the southern side of the Piazza S. Pietro.

Based in the Jordanian capital city of Amman, Father Mousalli has ministered to the needs of the tens of thousands of Iraqi Christian families who have sought refuge in the country since the U.S.–led invasion of Iraq in 2003. Once estimated to include more than a million members, the Chaldean Church in Iraq today is thought to have dwindled to less than 300,000 people; most have fled Iraq since August 2004, when extremist groups began to bomb churches, Christian-owned businesses and institutions.

Founded in 1926 by Pope Pius XI, CNEWA is an agency of the Holy See providing aid to the churches and peoples of the Middle East, Northeast Africa, India and Eastern Europe. Its operating agency in the Middle East, the Pontifical Mission for Palestine, was founded by Pope Pius XII to provide humanitarian assistance to refugees displaced by the Arab-Israeli war in 1948. Today, the Pontifical Mission today functions as the Holy See’s relief and development agency for the Middle East. Programs include emergency relief to displaced Iraqi and Palestinian families, community redevelopment projects, job-creation programs and pre– and postnatal medical care.

For Related Articles:
• National Catholic Reporter: The tragic Exodus of Iraqi Christians
• America magazine: Message from Iraq: ‘Take Our Wealth, but Leave Us in Peace’

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