Prince Charles warns of threat to Christianity in the Middle East

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Prince Charles meets with Iraqi and Syrian Catholics, warning of the “crisis threatening Christianity in the land of its birth"

Prince Charles warns of threat to Christianity in the Middle East

By Philippa Hitchen/ Vatican Radio

Britain’s Prince Charles met on Thursday, December 17, with Iraqi and Syrian Catholics, warning of the “ crisis which threatens the very existence of Christianity in the land of its birth”. The heir to the throne met with members of London’s Iraqi Chaldean and Syriac Catholic communities, as well as representatives of the Orthodox and Armenian Churches from the war-torn region.

The encounter was hosted by the Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Vincent Nichols and included representatives of charities working on behalf of those suffering conflict and persecution throughout the Middle East.

Speaking of the roots of Christianity in that region, Prince Charles highlighted the dual challenges of supporting those in need, while also ensuring that “the spiritual and cultural heritage of Christianity in the Middle East is preserved for future generations”.

“I think the government is very aware of the views of people in this country," Cardinal Vincent Nichols said, "and I think also of the generosity of many people in this country and the policy which they put in place which essentially is one of receiving refugees directly from the refugee camps and therefore trying to discourage these perilous journeys by sea and land."

The Cardinal continued, "It’s a policy that’s respected. … This policy needs to be accelerated, it needs to be given priority in this first year and then reassessed to see if a much greater number, on the basis of experience, could be helped to be brought to this country.”

When the Cardinal was asked about British attitudes towards migrants, he indicated that he believed it to be positive. “I don’t doubt for one minute," he said, "that the substantive response, almost instinctive response, of people in this country is one of compassion and generosity.”

Fri, 12/18/2015 - 21:29
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