Says Fundamentalists Are Going House by House

VATICAN CITY, OCT. 26, 2008 ( A Vatican spokesman is decrying a campaign of persecution against Iraqi Christians, asking Muslims to join in decidedly opposing fundamentalists.

Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, director of the Vatican press office, made this appeal on the most recent edition of Vatican Television's "Octava Dies."

"Obviously," he said, "all of the people of Iraq, and not just the Christian communities, suffer the consequences of decades of oppressive regimes, an ominous war and the social and political disorder that has plagued them."

Nevertheless, Father Lombardi continued, "the ancient Christian communities of the country are now submitted to systematic and intentional pressure, with an impressive series of violent acts and threats."

The Vatican spokesman noted the case of Mosul, where the situation has worsened in recent weeks.

"Reports from humanitarian organization and independent news agencies reveal that the threats from extremist Muslim groups are promoted street by street and house by house, spreading delirious written notes with messages such as, 'You should leave your house and this area in 24 hours. If not you will be justly punished and you will be killed, as our Islamic religion orders done with those who, like you, venerate the cross.'"

Father Lombardi affirmed that "it is absolutely necessary that fanatic fundamentalist groups be decidedly opposed."

"It is necessary for all men of peace, also from the Muslim world, to oppose with strength and clarity this horrible violation of the fundamental rights of the person," he added. "We hope that the initiatives of dialogue with the Muslim world, along the path opened by John Paul II and continued by Benedict XVI, contribute to affirm ever more decidedly that in the name of God, one cannot kill and hate, but only love and respect every human person."

ZE08102606 - 2008-10-26

Teachings of Christ

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

Entrance of the Mother of God into the Temple

Today is the prelude of the goodwill of God * and the heralding of the salvation of mankind; * the Virgin appears clearly in the temple of God * and foretells Christ to all. * Let us also with a mighty voice cry out to her: * “Rejoice, O Fulfillment of the Creator’s divine plan.” (Troparion - Tone 4)

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

The most pure Temple of the Savior, * the most precious Bridal-Chamber and Virgin, the sacred Treasury of the glory of God, * is brought today into the house of the Lord, * bringing with her the grace that is in the Divine Spirit. * The angels of God praise her in song: * “She is the heavenly tabernacle.” (Kontakion - Tone 4)

(November 21st)

Random Proverb

"Let your heart hold fast my words; keep my commandments, and live." (Proverbs 4:4 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

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

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

No one has to be embarrassed over his sinful state. ‘There is no man who, while living, does not sin,’ and the more sinful the man, the stronger will be God’s help in leading him out of his sinful mire. But the help of God comes only when the sinner repents with heartfelt contrition and has the will to reform. Not seeing in himself enough strength of soul to break away from sinful deeds, he asks for God’s help. This is where the mercy of God, Who does not wish the death of the sinner but wants him to be converted and live, is often evident.… If the voice of conscience awakens in us a feeling of remorse or repentance, then we must pray fervently to the Guardian Angel of our human existence that he may keep us from corrupt downfalls and help us ‘serve God with fear and trembling.’

Elder Macarius of Optina