We Can't Neglect the Call for Prayer Amidst ISIS Religious Persecutions

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Perhaps you were like me: you missed watching this video on 60 Minutes Sunday night:

More than 125,000 of Iraq’s Christians have been forced to flee the homeland they have lived in for nearly 2,000 years because of ISIS violence and threats. Lara Logan reports.

We’re reminded by the USCCB that we each need to be persistently praying for an end to this horrendous situation. It’s easy to turn away from this situation, which feels so insurmountably challenging. Videos like this one remind me that we cannot forget our brother and sister Christians in Iraq. I challenge you to take 16 minutes, watch this video, and join me in trying to at least pay attention to this heartbreak.

"Iraq in its region" by TUBS - Own workThis vector graphics image was created with Adobe Illustrator.This file was uploaded with Commonist.This vector image includes elements that have been taken or adapted from this: World location map (W3).svg (by TUBS).. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Iraq_in_its_region.svg#/media/File:Iraq_in_its_region.svg

“Iraq in its region” by TUBS – Own workThis vector graphics image was created with Adobe Illustrator.This file was uploaded with Commonist.This vector image includes elements that have been taken or adapted from this: World location map (W3).svg (by TUBS).. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Iraq_in_its_region.svg#/media/File:Iraq_in_its_region.svg

From our Bishops:

Upon learning of the death of 21 Coptic Christians at the hands of ISIL terrorists, Pope Francis called their murder a “testimony which cries out to be heard.” On behalf of America’s Catholic Bishops, we pause to listen and invite people of all faiths to join us in prayer for those facing the stark reality of religious persecution in the Middle East and elsewhere. The testimony of those 21 brave and courageous martyrs does not stand alone as thousands of families – Christian and other religions – find themselves fleeing from horrific violence.

We urge all people of goodwill to work toward protections of the marginalized and persecuted.In union with the local Churches and the Holy See, we call upon our nation to: work with the international community to intervene and protect the rights of religious minorities and civilians within the framework of international and humanitarian law; address political and economic exclusion that are exploited by extremists; and increase humanitarian and development assistance.

Lent is a season to meditate upon the Cross and unite ourselves even more closely with Christ’s suffering. Let us use this season to unite with our suffering brothers and sisters and pray for them and with them in a special way. With hope, let us pray for the day when we can all share in the joy and lasting peace of Christ’s resurrection.

Bishops Call for Prayer Amidst ‘Stark Reality’ of Religious Persecution, Violence.

Copyright 2015 Lisa M. Hendey

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About Author

Lisa M. Hendey is the founder and editor of CatholicMom.com and the bestselling author of the Chime Travelers children's fiction series, The Grace of Yes, The Handbook for Catholic Moms and A Book of Saints for Catholic Moms. As a board member and frequent host on KNXT Catholic Television, Lisa has produced and hosted multiple programs and has appeared on EWTN and CatholicTV. Hendey hosted “Catholic Moments” on Radio Maria and is the technology contributor for EWTN’s SonRise Morning Show. Lisa's articles have appeared in Catholic Digest, National Catholic Register, and Our Sunday Visitor. Hendey travels internationally giving workshops on faith, family, and Catholic technology and communications topics. She was selected as an Elizabeth Egan Journalism Fellow, attended the Vatican Bloggers Meeting, the “Bishops and Bloggers” meeting and has written internationally on the work of Catholic Relief Services and Unbound. Hendey lives with her family in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Visit Lisa at www.LisaHendey.com for information on her speaking schedule or to invite her to visit your group, parish or organization.

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