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Papal visit to Iraq’s largest Catholic town boosts hopes that Christians will return

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“For Christians here, as well as those living as refugees in Europe and America, this visit gives them hope. With the Pope’s visit, we feel that we are not alone. We feel that we are safe because someone cares about us.”

Papal visit to Iraq: ‘Hopefully this will motivate the international community to help’

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“Thousands lined the streets to see the Pope as he drove past. Religious sisters were literally dancing on the rooftops. These were people who had come back after being forced to leave their homes because of ISIS. What the Pope saw here were truly the living stones of the Church in Iraq.”

Iraqi priest: Pope and Grand Ayatollah are peacemakers

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The Christians of Baghdad hope that the Pope’s visit will save their community from the brink of extinction. One Church official told ACN that the number of Catholics in Baghdad was no more than a few hundred, after years of threats and bombings.

Pope Francis receives a copy of the order to pay the jizya, the jihadist tax ISIS demanded from Christians in Iraq

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“It proves the severe persecution suffered by Christians in Iraq during the years of terror by the ISIS.”

Director of ACN’s projects department will travel to Iraq in papal plane

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“The Holy Father’s trip to Iraq is such a sign of encouragement, a message of hope to the Iraqi Christians who have been tested in their faith all down the centuries.”

What is the symbolism of the stole that Pope Francis will receive in Qaraqosh, Iraq?

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“On one side of the stole is the Lord’s prayer in our language, Syriac, which comes from Aramaic, the original language of Jesus. On the other side is the Hail Mary.”

To mark papal visit to Iraq, ACN launches project to invest in young people

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“We need to bring good news to the people here during the papal visit; to be able to announce the vision to have 1000 students by 2025.”

A Lamborghini for Iraq: donation from Pope Francis allowed ACN to help persecuted Christians in Iraq

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More than 44 percent of the families who originally lived on the Nineveh Plains and were expelled by Islamist violence have now returned to their towns and villages.

Pope’s visit to Iraq: ‘Respect for Christians will grow’

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“The Pope knows where he is going. He is deliberately coming to an area marked by war and violence to bring a message of peace.”

Al-Tahira (ACN/A. Gage)

Pope will visit Al-Tahira Church on Iraq’s Nineveh Plains—‘It is part of our history’

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“In 2014 ISIS conquered the city and we fled to Kurdistan. After three years the city was liberated, and we returned. I remember very well how damaged the church was. It was completely burned.”

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