Latest news: Middle East - Africa

Cape Verde, Africa is getting its first cardinal

Feb 3, 2015 - 07:27 pm .- At the beginning of the year, Pope Francis announced that among the 20 men he would make cardinal on Feb. 14 is Bishop Arlindo Gomes Furtado of Santiago de Cabo Verde, whose episcopal motto is “Jesus, the Good Shepherd.”

Vatican commission to oversee Catholic university in Jordan

Feb 2, 2015 - 04:55 pm .- The Vatican Secretariat of State has established an ad hoc commission to oversee the American University of Madaba, a Catholic university in Jordan, to examine its financial stability, its governance, and its academics.

Can Christians survive the 'dirty games' of Middle East politics?

Jan 30, 2015 - 04:19 pm .- Christians have lived in the Middle East since the time of the apostles, but political machinations by world powers and other groups put these communities at risk of extinction, a Jordanian priest fears.

Missionary: Boko Haram behind attacks on churches, religious in Niger

Jan 30, 2015 - 04:01 am .- Boko Haram is determined to take its jihadist campaign beyond Nigeria. Its next targets include Niger, where, as reported in an email message from a woman religious working as a missionary in the country, the group has proclaimed that “Christians must die.”

Ghana priests shift focus to marriage prep, youth formation

Jan 30, 2015 - 02:21 am .- A national gathering of hundreds of priests in Ghana have resolved to become more involved with their parishioners through marriage preparation, family counseling, and educational youth formation.

Iraqi priests work to save historic Christian writings from Islamic State

Jan 29, 2015 - 02:01 am .- Effectively exiled from his friary in Mosul by the Islamic State last year, Fr. Najeeb Michaeel, O.P. is working to preserve Christian manuscripts through digitization, recording a memory of Iraq's Christian past.

Jesuit laments car bomb attack in Syria, scorns media silence

Jan 28, 2015 - 05:09 pm .- “Most of them were students at the university, young people who had not left the city. So what sort of message does this attack send out now? I believe they were deliberately targeted.”

Malawian bishops commit to spreading the Gospel with new media

Jan 28, 2015 - 02:04 am .- A national symposium of Catholic communicators set out to explore pathways in new media to build unity in Malawi and to connect people to the faith in the small southern African nation.

Should the West take on Nigeria's terrorists? Bishops say yes

Jan 26, 2015 - 05:02 pm .- Against the background of continuing attacks by radical Islamist group Boko Haram, bishops in Nigeria are appealing for military aid from Western governments, as well as solidarity and prayer from around the world.

Leading Iraqi Christian calls on Muslims to confront 'culture of hatred'

Jan 23, 2015 - 02:04 am .- The Chaldean Patriarch of Babylon has encouraged Iraqi Muslims to confront violent extremists, stressing the need to return to peaceful coexistence despite present threats in the country.

Masses suspended in Niger due to church burnings

Jan 22, 2015 - 04:32 pm .- The bishops of Niger have canceled Masses and activities at Catholic schools, health care facilities and charity outreaches after Muslim extremists set fire to dozens of churches across the country.

Suffering in Sierra Leone, hard-hit by Ebola, reminds bishop of civil war years

Jan 22, 2015 - 02:01 am .- From providing spiritual support to ensuring preventive care, the Diocese of Kenema in the eastern part of Sierra Leone is deeply involved in the country’s fight against the Ebola virus.

Malawi's Bishop Joseph Zuza dies in car accident

Jan 15, 2015 - 02:30 pm .- Catholics in Malawi are mourning the death of Bishop Joseph Mukasa Zuza of Mzuzu, who died in a car crash on Thursday at the age of 59.

In Kurdish Iraq, new beginnings for exiled nuns and priests

Jan 14, 2015 - 04:07 pm .- In 2014, more than 120,000 Christians in Iraq, among them dozens of priests and religious, had to flee from the Islamic State. Many have found refuge in the autonomous Kurdish regions of Iraq after having lost everything, among them Sister Sanaa Hana.

Twenty-one Egyptian Christians kidnapped in Libya

Jan 14, 2015 - 03:12 pm .- A Libyan affiliate of the Islamic State claimed the abduction of 21 Coptic Christians on Monday, releasing pictures of those they had captured.

Farsi Catechism translation offers hope of dialogue in Iran

Jan 13, 2015 - 12:27 pm .- The publication of the Farsi language edition of the Catechism of the Catholic Church may foster further interreligious dialogue in Iran, although this will depend on the commitment of local communities, a Vatican official said.

Nigerian bishop hopes for solidarity, as thousands already killed in the new year

Jan 12, 2015 - 02:56 pm .- Boko Haram having killed as many as 2,000 in an attack on the town of Baga last week, Archbishop Ignatius Kaigama of Jos hopes that Nigeria will see demonstrations of solidarity and unity in the face of such violence.

Among Christian refugees in Kurdistan, 'no one is angry at God'

Jan 11, 2015 - 06:01 am .- “Thank you, thank you, thank you:” Suheila, an elderly Christian woman from Mosul was effusive in expressing her gratitude to a group of European visitors. "May God make things easy for you in your lives."

The faith that has been in Iraq 2,000 years 'cannot disappear so easily'

Jan 9, 2015 - 12:00 pm .- Archbishop Emil Nona is the Chaldean Archbishop of Mosul, the Iraqi city overrun by the Islamic State last summer. Since then, he has brought the voice of the Christians of Iraq to the West.

In Jordan, Church works to assist refugees, protect youth from extremism

Jan 8, 2015 - 02:01 am .- For years the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan has been a haven for refugees from Iraq. However, a critical limit is in view as the country is also forced to accommodate a huge, and growing, influx of refugees fleeing ongoing war and violence in Syria.

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