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Middle East - Africa News

Pope Francis speaks during an in-flight press conference en route from Rome to Iraq March 8, 2021. Caption: Colm Flynn/CNA.

‘This is the pure Gospel’: Pope Francis moved by Iraqi Christians’ witness

Pope Francis said Monday that the sight of the destroyed churches and ruins in Mosul and the Nineveh Plains in... Read more

Pope Francis speaks during an in-flight press conference en route from Rome to Iraq March 8, 2021. Caption: Colm Flynn/CNA.

Pope Francis: Meeting with Iraq’s top Shiite cleric offered ‘universal message’ of fraternity

On his flight to Rome from Baghdad on Monday, Pope Francis said that Iraq’s top Shiite cleric is a “humble and... Read more

Pope Francis returns a historic prayer manuscript to Immaculate Conception Church in Bakhdida, Iraq, March 7, 2021.  Credit: Vatican Media.

By Courtney Mares

Pope Francis returns historic prayer book saved from Islamic State to the Nineveh Plains

During his trip to Iraq, Pope Francis returned a historic Aramaic prayer manuscript which was restored after the Islamic State... Read more

Pope Francis met with Abdullah Kurdi in Erbil, Iraq on March 7, 2021. Credit: Vatican Media.

By Courtney Mares

Pope Francis in Iraq meets with father whose children died as refugees in shipwreck

Pope Francis met Sunday with a father who lost his wife and two children in a shipwreck as Syrian war... Read more

Pope Francis celebrates Mass in the Franso Hariri Stadium in Erbil, Iraq, March 7, 2021. Photo credits: Vatican Media.

Full text: Pope Francis’ homily at Mass in the Franso Hariri Stadium in Erbil

Here is the full text of Pope Francis’ homily, delivered March 7, 2021, in the Franso Hariri Stadium in Erbil,... Read more

Pope Francis celebrates Mass in the Franso Hariri Stadium in Erbil, Iraq, March 7, 2021. Photo credits: Vatican Media.

Pope Francis in Erbil: ‘Today I can see at first hand that the Church in Iraq is alive’

Pope Francis on Sunday expressed joy at the vitality of the Church in Iraq despite years of fierce persecution.  Read more

Pope Francis in the Syriac Catholic Church of the Immaculate Conception in Bakhdida, Iraq on March 7, 2021. Credit: Vatican Media/CNA.

Full text: Pope Francis’ Angelus address in the Nineveh Plains

Here is the full prepared text of Pope Francis’ Angelus address, delivered March 7, 2021, in Bakhdida (Qaraqosh), Iraq.  Read more

Pope Francis blesses a young boy in the Syriac Catholic Church of the Immaculate Conception in Bakhdida, Iraq, on March 7, 2021. Photo credits: Vatican Media.

By Courtney Mares

Pope Francis in the Nineveh Plains: ‘Terrorism and death never have the last word’

Pope Francis entrusted the rebuilding of Christian communities in the Nineveh Plains to the protection of the Virgin Mary at... Read more

Pope Francis prays for the victims of war in Mosul, Iraq, March 7, 2021. Photo credits: Vatican Media.

Full text: Pope Francis’ prayer of suffrage for the victims of war in Mosul

Here is the full text of Pope Francis’ prayer of suffrage for the victims of the war, delivered March 7, 2021,... Read more

Pope Francis releases a dove after praying for the victims of war in Mosul, Iraq, March 7, 2021. Photo credits: Vatican Media.

Pope Francis prays for victims of war in ruins of Mosul

Pope Francis prayed on Sunday for the victims of war in the rubble-strewn city of Mosul, where the Islamic State... Read more

Pope Francis with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi at Baghdad International Airport, March 5, 2021. Credit: Vatican Media.

Iraqi PM declares national day of tolerance in honor of papal meeting with top Shiite cleric

Iraq’s prime minister on Saturday declared March 6 a National Day of Tolerance and Coexistence in honor of Pope Francis’ landmark... Read more

Pope Francis attends an interreligious meeting in the Plain of Ur, Iraq, March 6, 2021. Credit: Colm Flynn/CNA.

Full text: Pope Francis’ address at an interreligious meeting in the Plain of Ur

Here is the full prepared text of Pope Francis’ address at an interreligious meeting, delivered March 6, 2021, in the... Read more

Pope Francis attends an interreligious meeting in the Plain of Ur, Iraq, March 6, 2021. Photo credits: Vatican Media.

Pope Francis appeals for interreligious harmony at birthplace of Abraham

Pope Francis on Saturday appealed for harmony among the followers of the world’s major monotheistic religions at an interreligious meeting... Read more

Pope Francis meets Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani in Najaf, Iraq, March 6, 2021. Credit: Vatican Media.

Pope Francis makes landmark visit to Iraq’s top Shiite cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani

Pope Francis on Saturday made a landmark visit to the home of Iraq’s top Shiite cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani.  Read more

Vida Hanna, director of public and international relations at The Catholic University in Erbil, who is coordinating Pope Francis March 7 Mass in Erbil. Credit: Alejandro Bermudez/CNA.

By Alejandro Bermudez

Papal Mass in Erbil 'nothing short of a miracle'

When Vida Hanna was told by the Archbishop Bashar Warda of the Chaldean Archeparchy of Erbil that Pope Francis was... Read more

Pope Francis at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Salvation in Baghdad, Iraq, March 5, 2021. Photo credits: Vatican Media.

Full text: Pope Francis’ address at Baghdad’s Cathedral of Our Lady of Salvation

Here is the full text of Pope Francis’ address to bishops, priests, religious, consecrated persons, seminarians, and catechists, delivered March... Read more

Pope Francis at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Salvation in Baghdad, Iraq, March 5, 2021. Photo credits: Vatican Media.

By Hannah Brockhaus

Pope Francis meets Iraqi Catholics in church where 48 died in 2010 terrorist attack

Pope Francis met with Iraqi Catholic leaders in Baghdad on Friday, in a cathedral where 48 people were martyred during... Read more

Pope Francis gives his address at the Presidential Palace in Baghdad March 5, 2021. Photo credits: Vatican Media.

Full text: Pope Francis’ address to the Iraqi authorities, civil society, and diplomatic corps

Here is the full prepared text of Pope Francis’ address to the Iraqi authorities, civil society, and the diplomatic corps,... Read more

Pope Francis addresses local authorities at the Presidential Palace in Baghdad. Credit: Vatican Media.

By Courtney Mares

Pope Francis in Iraq: ‘The name of God cannot be used to justify acts of murder’

In his first speech in Iraq, Pope Francis called for an end to violence and extremism so that ordinary Iraqis... Read more

The restored Marian statue damaged by Islamic State during its occupation of Karamles, Iraq. Photo credits: Rocchi/SIR.

By Courtney Mares

Pope Francis will bless this Virgin Mary statue desecrated by Islamic State

Iraqi Catholics have asked Pope Francis to bless a statue of the Virgin Mary that was desecrated by the Islamic... Read more