The Vicar and Teresaby Teresa Neumann : Nov 23, 2010 : Andrew White – The Jerusalem Post

“I live with many threats, along with my people, but our place is not sad but full of joy. Despite the constant tragedies, our people are not sad and our church is not despondent.”

(Iraq)—Many Breaking Christian News subscribers watched our exclusive video interview with the Reverend Canon Dr. Andrew White last year. Now, White is speaking out about the recent church massacre in Baghdad.

In excerpts from a Jerusalem Post blog, White writes: “In Iraq we have been under attack since the beginning of the war in 2003, but the past month has seen an escalation in our situation. Over the past year, 93 Christians were killed in my church. This month alone over 100 have been killed in Iraq. Some 59 were killed in a single massacre in the Syrian Catholic Church on the 31st of October 2010. Since then many more Christians have been targeted, blown up, told they no longer belong in Iraq and were advised to leave now or be executed. Things are so hard that many Christians are fleeing, or at least are trying to.”

“My security now is very intense and far greater now than in the post war year. It always used to amaze me when I went to church each week with body armor on, in armored cars and surrounded by Iraqi Military. I don’t think that there were many other ministers in the world who would go to church like this. Nowadays things are very different. I now live in the church Compound, and the security of the church is now completely different than before. Not only are we surrounded by bomb barricades, the number of police and army security is phenomenal—and they are all provided by the Iraqi Government. Not long ago I went to Kurdistan with my board chair Lord Hylton. We were given over 120 military security to get us out of Baghdad. Then we reduced to our normal 35 soldiers when we left Baghdad. The children of our church came to me and, pointing at the soldiers, told me they were my children. So from that day I call my security my children.

“Whilst I am aware that I am constantly at risk and have to listen to my security, at the same time I am acutely aware that the members of my congregation have no security. They may not have my profile, but they are all at risk because they are all followers of Jesus of Nazareth. They were so at risk that those who had money fled soon after the war. Those who are left behind tend to be the seriously poor who have nothing. Our church has to provide them with food, health care and rent. We are the only church I know that in our compound has a large clinic with doctors, dentists, a pharmacy and laboratory. It is a service that is provided for everyone in our community—independent of their faith background.

“I have tried to ascertain why our people are under attack and have come up with what I call the Three P’s: Perception, Proclamation and Practice. There is no way of preventing the presence, proclamation and practice of faith. It is this that is at the heart of our faith in the Almighty who promises never to leave us or forsake us. In the midst of the difficulties we know without doubt that our God is the only way through. We know that our Lord has informed us that our faith will indeed be under attack and as we get closer to His return this will not get better but worse. We take hope from the fact that we are under attack because we believe and know that we are trusted by our Lord to persevere, and we will.

“I live with many threats, along with my people, but our place is not sad but full of joy. Despite the constant tragedies, our people are not sad and our church is not despondent.”

 


2 Responses to “The Vicar of Baghdad Speaks Out About Recent Iraq Church Bombing”

  1. 1 Neil & Audine Gray

    You are in our prayers. The Lord continue to bless you and your people Andrew. We pray also for your health and your wife and sons in England.

    Through what avenue can we send your people financial support?

    We heard you speak at Christ Church Guildford about 18 mths ago and you have been on our hearts and in our prayers since then.

  2. 2 James

    This attempt to silence God’s people and eliminate Christians is a tragedy. Yet it’s also true that one we should expect such opposition as followers of Jesus.

    Unfortunately we have become somewhat immune to these news articles because we hear so much of it.

    I also find it sad and quite shocking that we are not moved to do anything for others facing such appalling treatment until the same or similar threat is happening to us. For example it is sad that so far there has been only one reply on this site and to this article regarding the attacks on Iraqi church. If the same attacks were occurring to Christian churches in Australia there would no doubt be an outpouring of responses from many, many Australians, (if by that stage there was even the means to do so!).

    Let us keep faith and remember other brothers and sisters suffering in the name of Jesus.

    James.

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