Be Not Afraid, Middle East Christians

There is great uncertainty and great fear” among Christians in Egypt and Syria, said Pierbattista Pizzaballa, O.F.M., on Aug. 24. But Christians should take courage. “We must not be afraid...to say how things really are with clarity, but also maintaining a Christian attitude of witness, openness, welcome and trying in every case to reconstruct dialogue and relationships,” he said, speaking during a conference sponsored by the Communion and Liberation movement in Rimini, Italy. The changes sweeping through countries across North Africa and extending to Syria obviously give rise to hopes, but also concerns, he said. “Right now in Egypt there is much fear and uncertainty because, after a period of euphoria” and unity after the fall of President Hosni Mubarak, “it seems that the more fundamentalist parties are prevailing,” he said. In Syria, “Christians were and still are treated with great respect,” but the protest movements against the government have led to concerns that the respect they were guaranteed for decades may be threatened.

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

Rescue workers search for survivors in the debris of collapsed buildings Sept. 20 in Mexico City. The magnitude 7.1 earthquake hit Sept. 19 to the southeast of the city, killing hundreds. (CNS photo/Jose Mendez, EPA)
All the dioceses in Mexico were collecting food, water and other necessities for victims of the quakes and were seeking economic support from inside and outside the country.
Catholic News ServiceSeptember 20, 2017
The moment we begin to measure, we know nothing of love, know nothing of God.
Terrance KleinSeptember 20, 2017
There is only so much room—in our houses, in our hearts. At some point, we have got to let go.
Nick Ripatrazone September 20, 2017
The Rev. Carol Howard Merritt says that the image of a God who suffers with us can play a role in helping people recover.
Kaya OakesSeptember 20, 2017