Thursday, April 14, 2011

‘Religicide’ exterminating Iraqi Christians

More Christians have been fleeing Iraq in recent months than ever before, reported Mission Network News (MNN) today.

Carl Moeller with Open Doors USA says extremists are calling for the complete extermination of believers in the country.

"We've been calling this a 'religicide'—which is the systematic destruction and elimination of a religious group simply for being that religious group. And we see this now unfolding in a very shocking way," says Moeller.

The number of Christians in Iraq has dropped dramatically in the last few decades, from 850,000 believers in 1991, to 550,000 believers in 2003, to 345,000 believers in early 2010. Now perhaps less than 250,000 Christians call Iraq home, a number which includes those who have been permanently displaced from their homes.

The loss of so many believers in just a year can be attributed in part to one significant event, said Moeller: a terrorist attack by al-Qaida-linked groups on Our Lady of Salvation Church on October 31 of last year. Sixty Christians were killed. As a result, up to 95,000 Christians have left the country since that attack, said Moeller.

At the current rate of the exodus, Iraq will not have any Christians left in three years, said an Open Doors' field worker.

You can read the entire MNN report here.

Please pray for our fellow brothers and sisters in Iraq. Pray for their safety but also for courage unknown to share the gospel with those who are seeking. Pray that the government would put an end to this "religicide" and that ultimately the Lord's sovereign will reign.

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