Friday, 21 July 2017

Iraqi Catholic Christians

Introduction and History :

Iraqi Catholic Christians also known as "Chaldean Catholics" are an Ancient Catholic Community that exists in the Middle East.

There are less than 400, 000 left today in Iraq. 75% of all Iraqi Christians are "Chaldean Catholics".

The Chaldean Catholic Church was founded in Babylon in "Ancient Mesopotamia" sometime during the 2nd Century A.D.

The Chaldean People who lived in and around the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers were evangelized by Saint Jude Thaddeus, An Apostle of Jesus Christ sometime towards the middle of the First Century A.D. to Christianity.

They are one of 3-4 Catholic Communities in the Middle East that still speak "Aramaic" in word in the Liturgy as well as among themselves today.

Aramaic is the language that was spoken by Jesus Christ and His Apostles.

All About Chaldean Catholic Christians :

The Chaldean Catholic Church has been in communion with the Holy See at Rome for a number of Centuries, but specially from the 13th Century onwards.

During the 17th, 18th, and 19th Centuries in Iraq there was a substantial rise in numbers among Chaldean Catholics.

This was due to conversions to the Catholic Faith by Eastern Rite Orthodox Chaldeans.

Missionary Dominican Friars were instrumental in evangelizing a large number of Orthodox Chaldeans in Iraq to the Catholic Faith specially in and around Mosul in the 1700's and 1800's.

Mosul in Northern Iraq was a large Archdiocese with many Parishes and Churches dedicated to Our Lady.

The Plains of Nineveh near Mosul witnessed the biggest ever Missionary Movement among Orthodox Chaldeans towards the Catholic Faith in the 18th and 19th Centuries.

The vast majority of Chaldean Catholics used to live in Northern Iraq specially in Mosul, Erbil, and Qaraqosh.

The rest live in and around Baghdad and near Basra in Southern Iraq.

Chaldean Catholics of Iraq are "Very Precious" in terms of their Historical Significance and Spiritual Significance. They are Christianity's "Precious Soldiers".

Conclusion :

It is my prayer that Countries in the West will extend a helping hand to these Catholic Christians of Iraq with immediate effect.

Most importantly, Chaldean Catholic Christians of Iraq are the only "Native Catholic Christians in the Arabian Peninsula".

Let us do our utmost for them by word and by deed as they are "One of Our Own".

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