IRAQ – First church service held in Mosul since liberation from Islamic State


Date:  September 8, 2017

Iraqi Christians have held what is thought to be the first church service in the Mosul since the city was retaken from Islamic State (IS). The pastor who led the communion service on 9 August described the devastation in the church: “Rubble everywhere, the stone facing on walls knocked off … Crosses set into the walls were chopped off with sledgehammers so no trace would remain of anything that is Christian, of anything that is Jesus Christ.”

Islamic State desecrated churches in Qaraqosh
Islamic State desecrated churches in Qaraqosh

Some Christians have begun returning to their homes in Qaraqosh in northern Iraq – once the largest Christian town in the country, located around 20  (32 km) south-east of Mosul – where IS militants also badly damaged churches. However, the future of Iraq’s historic Christian community remains extremely uncertain and many believers no longer feel safe or welcome in the places they once called their home.

From CNA here

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