This morning, Maria Teresa Landi, friend of a friend, came up with an extraordinary idea: send letters of encouragement to the Christians of Baghdad, who are suffering horrible persecution and killings. They are the Church’s modern-day martyrs.
By day’s end, the Nuncio at the United Nations was offering his diplomatic pouch (direct mail). He proposed to have all letters and messages sent to him by Tuesday night in a package and he will send the package to the Nunciature in Iraq on Wednesday morning.
Please address your emails to the families to His Beatitude Emmanuel Delli, Patriarch of the Chaldean Catholic Church in Baghdad at email@example.com. He will print out the emails and put them in the pouch.
Are there not angels among us? Tere, who is active in the Communion and Liberation movement, is asking that her idea be distributed as widely as possible. Here are some excerpts from her beautiful email:
I kept thinking at their suffering, at their mysterious participation in the cross of Christ, and what this means for me and for the history of Iraq, the Middle East and the entire world. I thought to offer my work for them, to do it very seriously as my way to be present to them. And to pray for them, to ask the pastor of my Church to say a Mass for them, that they could be sustained in this difficult time and not feel alone in their struggle. That they could recognize Christ in these challenging circumstances.
Suddenly, I had an idea and this is why I am writing to you.
In addition to praying for them, why don’t we all write letters to them, many, many letters as soon as possible, also from our kids, to tell them that we are with them, that even if we are far away, we are One in Christ, we pray for them, and we thank them for their presence in that precious land and in our lives? We can witness to them the miracles we see in our lives, the path we are following, our certainty in the presence of Christ in any circumstance, so they could be sustained in their faith.
It is a small gesture, like a drop in the ocean, but Christ can use it to make great things, because, as He said, when two or three are gathered in His name, He is in their midst.
UPDATE: From our friend Elizabeth Scalia, Out of Iraq: The Gospel Message Writ Large.
UPDATE II: Thoughts of St. Cyprian on Martyrdom.
Update III: A Dedication (or two).
Update IV: To Send Supplies to Iraqi Christians.