For the Chaldean Church, it is crucial to revamp the foundational charter of the state on the basis of the principles of equality and human rights. Some sharia-based rules are unacceptable in a modern and civilian state. The conflict between Arabs and Kurds, and between Erbil and Baghdad, is likely to trigger a new Christian exodus.

Baghdad (AsiaNews) - For Iraq’s rebirth, it is necessary to reform the constitution, “which is the basis of the country’s unity,” and enshrine the principles of equality and human rights, this according to Mgr Shlemon Audish Warduni, auxiliary bishop of Baghdad.

Speaking to AsiaNews, the right-hand man of the Chaldean patriarch Louis Sako, reiterated the commitment of Christians "to peace, security and civil coexistence". Iraq is a rich land, he noted, but it "lacks the will" to achieve this.

Such a goal requires a renewed commitment of the various components of the nation, on the basis of the principle of equality. All citizens must be equal before the constitution. In fact, no nation in the world can "exist without a Charter", Mgr Warduni said.

At the same time, reconstruction after years of war and sectarian violence must be based on the pillars of "justice and freedom." However, the prelate wonders how can we talk about "freedom of conscience" when the basis of governance is "sharia, Islamic law," which guarantees a dominant position to Muslims over other ethno-religious groups.

In the past, the leaders of the Iraqi Church expressed their opposition to Iraq’s controversial constitution, in particular Article 37-2, which does not protect religious freedom and the rights of minorities.

In September 2015, Chaldean Patriarch Louis Raphael Sako sent a letter to Parliament asking for an amendment to the paragraph that says that a minor must be registered as a Muslim if one of the two parents converts to Islam.

Recently, the Chaldean Patriarch, on a visit to France, called for changes to Iraq’s constitution to ensure the "equality of all citizens", and that religion would be a matter of "personal choice". Religion, the prelate explained, should not influence the normal conduct of state affairs.

Full story: http://www.asianews.it/index.php?art=42339&l=en


Teachings of Christ

“Whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 10:33 ESV)

Theophany

When You were baptized in the Jordan, O Lord, * worship of the Trinity was revealed, * for the Father's voice bore witness to You, calling You His “beloved Son”, * and the Spirit in the form of a dove confirmed the certainty of these words. * O Christ God, * Who appeared and enlightened the world, glory to You! (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.

You have appeared to the whole world today, * and Your light, O Lord, is signed upon us, * who with knowledge praise You in song: * "You have come, and You have appeared, O Unapproachable Light." (Kontakion, Tone 4)

Theophany is a Greek word meaning "manifestation or appearence of God".

Random Proverb

"My son, keep my words and treasure up my commandments with you; keep my commandments and live." (Proverbs 7:1,2 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

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

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

[The Lord] is always knocking at the doors of our hearts, that we may open to Him, that He may enter in and rest in Our souls, and we may wash and anoint His feet, and He may make His abode with us. The Lord in that passage reproaches the man who did not wash His feet (Luke 7:44); and again He says elsewhere, "Behold, I stand at the door and knock, if any man will open unto Me, I shall come in unto him" (Rev. 3:20). To this end He endured to suffer many things, giving His own body unto death, and purchasing us out of bondage, in order that He might come to our soul and make His abode with it.. ..His food and His drink, His clothing and shelter and rest is in our souls. Therefore He is always knocking, desiring to enter into us.. Let us then receive Him, and bring Him within ourselves; because He is our food and our drink and our eternal life, and every soul that has not now received Him within and given Him rest, or rather found rest in Him, has no inheritance in the kingdom of heaven with the saints, and cannot enter into the heavenly city.. But Thou, Lord Jesus Christ, bring us thereunto, glorifying Thy name, with the Father and the Holy Spirit, for ever. Amen

St Macarius the Great