Iraq (MNN) — Following the
murders of several Iraqi Christians, thousands have been fleeing Mosul. A church was bombed October 14 spurring the
exodus into a frenzy for escape.
Other reports have stated that
Christian homes have been bombed and leaflets are being passed around threatening
Christians with death unless they convert to Islam or pay a special tax that
marks them as second-class citizens.
American military officials
believe al Qaeda militants are behind the attacks. The forced displacement is a terrible scene,
and one that weighs heavily on the staff at SAT-7.
Iraqi believers are text
messaging SAT-7 requesting urgent prayer, says David Harder. The ministry then places the messages on its
screen. Harder says some of what's
coming across is heartbreaking. "The
Christians who are there have been fleeing. One person wrote, 'We left with only our souls.' It's really terrible. According to the reports that we've received,
what's happened is that some of the extremists that were in other parts of the
country have moved north and come to Mosul where there has been a vibrant
The ministry has also placed a
message in Arabic on its viewer Web site from Archbishop Youhana Ibrahim, Head
of the Syrian Orthodox Church and SAT-7 Board member asking for urgent prayer,
the translation of which reads: "This
is a heartfelt call of brotherly love, spurred by the teachings from heaven, to
put an end to the horrifying massacre of Christians in Iraq… Let us maintain
the right to co-exist together in the same homeland."
Harder says many believers are
concerned not only for themselves but also for others. "One of the prayer
requests we received was for the terrorists, for the extremists, that they
would have a 'Pauline experience'–that instead of being
persecutors, they would become lovers of Jesus through what's happened."
SAT-7 has also received an email
from a pastor in Iraq, who has hosted programs on the channel, saying: "We're sending an S.O.S prayer request so the
terrorists who think what they're doing is for God will wake up and know the
real God. We're also praying that
Christians will get closer to Jesus. And
[we're praying] for the many families who have lost loved ones, houses and money, to never
forget that, no matter what we lose, we'll still have the places Jesus is
preparing for us in Heaven."
pastor went on to say that many Christians in Iraq are asking for others to
join them in three days of prayer and fasting for the situation. Government officials have stated that they are sending in
additional police to help with the situation. SAT-7 is very concerned about Christians living in Iraq, especially in
Mosul, and will continue to ask viewers to pray for the situation until it