CWN - An Iraqi archbishop has welcomed the new US policy—set in an executive order by President Trump—that gives preference to religious minorities in applications for refugee status.

Archbishop Bashar Warda of Erbil said that the policy would preferential treatment would be a boon to suffering Christians in the Middle East. He made a point of saying that this would be true only if the policy offered support fo all religious minorities, not only Christians. Earlier this week another Iraqi prelate, Chaldean Catholic Patriarch Louis Raphael I Sako, had said that a preference for Christians could ultimately harm Iraqi Christians, by increasing resentments among their Muslim neighbors.

Archbishop Warda said that Iraqi Christians “celebrated when Trump won,” hoping that the new American leader would change policies that had ignored the suffering of Christians.

Ironically, the archbishop was denied permission to visit the US, for a scheduled discussion of religious persecution, because of another policy set by the controversial Trump executive order. (See today’s separate CWN headline story.)

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Teachings of Christ

'Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day." (John 6:53-54 ESV)

Exaltation of the Cross

Save Your people, O Lord, and bless Your inheritance; * grant victory to Your Church over her enemies * and protect Your commonwealth by Your Cross. (Troparion - Tone 1)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Willingly lifted up on the Cross, O Christ God, * bestow Your compassions upon the new commonwealth that bears Your name. * By your power grant joy to Your Church, * granting her victory over her enemies. * May she have your Cross as the weapon of peace * and the invincible ensign of victory. (Kontakion - Tone 4)

The Church celebrates the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross on September 14th.

Random Proverb

"When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom." (Proverbs 11:2 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

There is nothing impossible unto those who believe; lively and unshaken faith can accomplish great miracles in the twinkling of an eye. Besides, even without our sincere and firm faith, miracles are accomplished, such as the miracles of the sacraments; for God's Mystery is always accomplished, even though we were incredulous or unbelieving at the time of its celebration. "Shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect?" (Rom. 3:3). Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence.

St. John of Kronstadt, My Life in Christ