“These crises should concern us as people and as Church”
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
You would have read of the ongoing tragedies in the Middle East, particularly in Gaza and Iraq.
The small territory of Gaza has been devastated by weeks of war between Israel and Hamas. Even UN shelters for civilians have been shelled and are in ruins. In Iraq, extremists calling themselves the Islamic State have taken over Mosul and parts of Northern Iraq and are committing atrocities against Christians, Yazidis and other religious and ethnic minorities.
These crises should concern us as people and as Church. Through organisations such as Caritas Iraq, Caritas Jerusalem, and Caritas Lebanon, the Church has people on the ground helping out with refugees and other victims of the conflicts.
Our Holy Father has called for prayers for peace and for those affected. The Vatican has called on Muslim leaders to denounce unambiguously the persecution of Christians and minorities in Iraq.
I therefore ask for your prayers in solidarity with those who are affected by the wars. Let us pray especially for our brothers and sisters who are being persecuted in the lands they have been living in. God be with them in this time of great need.
Yours devotedly in Christ.
Archbishop William Goh
Suggested text for Prayer of the Faithful
We pray for those who have lost their homes and their loved ones in the Middle East conflicts in Gaza and Iraq. We pray that their hearts be consoled by our Lord and that they find the strength to rebuild their lives.
We pray fervently for our brothers and sisters who are persecuted by religious extremists in Iraq. May they find safety and the strength to move on and continue to remain true to our faithful God.
We pray for the safety, guidance and strength of the Catholic relief organisations and their personnel as they bring God’s hope to those broken families and the many others who have fled their homes.
We pray for an end to the conflicts in the Middle East and that peace would be restored to the area.
The archdiocese is not conducting a fundraising appeal for this at this time. However, those who wish to donate can do so through CHARIS, which will channel the funds to the local Catholic organisations helping out on the ground in the Middle East.
You can send a crossed cheque payable to “Humanitarian Aid Fund” with your name and contact information to CHARIS at 55 Waterloo Street, #07- 02, Catholic Centre, Singapore 187954.
You may indicate “Middle East” or other purpose on the back of the cheque. Please contact Albert Lim at 6337-4119 or [email protected] org for further information.