Baghdad (AsiaNews) - The referendum on the independence of Iraqi Kurdistan has triggered a new wave of violence investing the "Christian citizens of Nineveh plain." The result is that "many inhabitants" have "fled", creating a "renewed atmosphere of anxiety and fear", which will eventually "give rise to new divisions and prevent the reconstruction and return of people to their homes,” stresses the Chaldean primate Louis Raphael Sako, in an appeal published on the patriarchate website and sent to AsiaNews. In the letter, the leader of the Iraqi Church does not hide the danger that this further conflict, on a land already marked by suffering, may give rise to "further migration" of Christians.

In a growing tension, the 71-year-old Kurdish leader Massoud Barzani announced his resignation as President of Kurdistan, shortly ahead of the expiration of the mandate scheduled for November 1st. He says he will not look for another term and launches a harsh accusation against the United States and a part of the Kurdish parliament. Barzani reproaches Washington for having already forgotten the Peshmerga's fundamental support in the fight against the Islamic State in Mosul and other areas of Iraq.

Full story: http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Chaldean-patriarch:-Christians-fleeing-the-conflict-between-Kurds-and-Iraqis,-fears-of-a-new-exodus-42185.html


Teachings of Christ

“Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” (John 4:13-14 ESV)

Encounter

Rejoice, O Mother of God, Virgin full of grace. * From you has risen the Sun of Righteousness, Christ our God, * shining upon those who are in darkness. * Rejoice also, you righteous Elder; * for you received in your arms the Deliverer of our souls, * Who has given us resurrection. (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.

O Christ God, through Your birth You sanctified the Virgin's womb; * and blessed, as it was proper, the hands of Simeon. * Now, having come, you saved us. * Give peace to Your commonwealth in times of war * and strengthen our civil authorities, whom You have loved, O You who alone loves mankind. (Kontakion, Tone 1)

(The Feast of the Encounter is February 2nd - the 40th Day of Christmas)

Random Proverb

"Do not say to your neighbor, “Go, and come again, tomorrow I will give it”—when you have it with you." (Proverbs 3:28 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

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

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

What toil we must endure, what fatigue, while we are attempting to climb hills and the summits of mountains! What, that we may ascend to heaven! If you consider the promised reward, what you endure is less. Immortality is given to the one who perseveres; everlasting life is offered; the Lord promises His Kingdom.

St. Cyprian