Restoration work on the "Tomb of Jesus" at Jerusalem's Holy Sepulchre Church began on Sunday, as the major holy site was on the verge of collapse, according to reports.
The year-long restoration project is bringing together members of the Greek Orthodox, Roman Catholic and Armenian Orthodox churches who are all helping in the $3.4 million project that is set to peel away layers from the tomb's outer surface, cleaning and repairing them one by one.
AFP reported that the holy site was "on the verge of collapse" as workers erected scaffolding and a steel canopy over the entrance to the tomb, officially starting work on the year-long restoration project. more >>
A parasitic flesh-eating disease is reportedly breaking out throughout the Middle East, with the Islamic State terror group contributing to the problem with its death and destruction campaigns that create environments where disease can fester and spread.
Breitbart News reported that thousands of cases have been reported in Syria, Turkey, Lebanon, and Jordan, as nearly four million Syrian refugees flee their country's civil war and seek shelter in Europe.
The tropical disease, called Cutaneous leishmaniasis, is caused by bites from infected sand flies that live amid the squalid conditions created by IS (also known as ISIL or ISIS) destruction. more >>
The Syriac Orthodox Archbishop of Mosul, Mgr Nicodemus Daoud Sharaf, has described how extensive the destruction of the Islamic State terror group's efforts against Christians are in Iraq and Syria.
"They take everything from us. They take our churches, they take our monasteries, they take our houses, our land, our money, our life, our dignity, our history," Sharaf told the European Centre for Law & Justice, an affiliate of the American branch, ACLJ.
The church leader said that IS (also known as ISIS or ISIL) repeatedly destroys or converts to mosques early-century Christian churches essential to the history of the faith, and called for Western citizens to push their governments to help. more >>
Knights of Columbus CEO Carl Anderson testified before a congressional subcommittee, warning that indigenous Christians and other minorities in Iraq and Syria face extinction in less than a decade and that the United States can avert this crisis.
"Many of the region's indigenous communities now face extinction. These communities may disappear in less than a decade. But their fate is not inevitable," Anderson told the U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations of the Committee on Foreign Affairs.
In March, Secretary of State John Kerry acknowledged for the first time that genocide being committed by the Islamic State terror group, which is also known as ISIS or ISIL or Daesh, against Christians and other religious minorities in the Middle East. more >>
The fight to protect Christians and other religious minorities from genocide at the hands of the Islamic State terror group has intensified, with the United Nations being called to take immediate action, the American Center for Law and Justice has confirmed.
In a letter thanking U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry for declaring the massacre against Christians in Iraq and Syria a genocide, the ACLJ called on the U.S. to take several steps and advance the case at the U.N., by:
"1) pressing the United Nations to declare that the ongoing atrocities committed by the Islamic State and associate groups constitute genocide; 2) communicating with all appropriate offices of the United Nations to that end; and 3) doing everything in your power to mobilize the international community to take swift and decisive action." more >>
As United States lawmakers weigh legislation that would commit U.S. support to Christian militias in Iraq and Syria, the Primate of the Chaldean Church warns that arming Christian militias fighting against the Islamic State is a "bad idea."
The National Defense Authorization Act that was already passed by the House and is caught up in the Senate would commit the U.S. government to provide defense articles, services and training to tribal and local security forces who are "committed to protecting highly vulnerable ethnic and religious minority communities, such as Yezidis, Christian, Assyrian and Turkmen."
Although there have been reports highlighting the efforts of Christian militias dedicated to protecting their homelands, Chaldean Patriarch Louis Raphael I Sako told Fides News Agency that there are really no actual Christian militias and asserted that the U.S. should not arm any so-called Christian militias. more >>