|Dear Brother Knight,|
The Knights of Columbus is committed to assisting our Christian brothers and sisters who are suffering in the Middle East. At this year’s Supreme Convention, I announced a “Season of Truth” dedicated to raising awareness of their plight, and the plight of other religious minorities in the region.
The violence in the Middle East has led to many deaths and the greatest refugee crisis since WWII. Over four million people have been displaced. Among the most affected are Iraqi and Syrian Christians, who are the victims of ongoing systematic cleansing and persecution. While the Christian population in Iraq once numbered above a million, violence has reduced that number by more than 65%. This human catastrophe has drawn commentary from Pope Francis, who said this of the persecution:
Today we are dismayed to see how in the Middle East and elsewhere in the world many of our brothers and sisters are persecuted, tortured and killed for their faith in Jesus. In this third world war, waged piecemeal, … a form of genocide is taking place.
As Knights of Columbus we cannot be part of what Pope Francis has called the “complicit silence” of many who hear of these atrocities and do nothing. We must act.
To date, we have donated more than $4 million to relief efforts in Iraq and Syria through the Knights of Columbus Christian Refugee Relief Fund. We have also launched a website and released a commercial to raise awareness of the crisis. However, more assistance is needed, as the response from the international community has been woefully inadequate.
Please go to christiansatrisk.org to learn more about this humanitarian emergency and to make a donation that will provide material assistance to these refugees. Please also consider sharing this message with your family and friends.
As Knights of Columbus, we are called to stand in solidarity with all those Christians around the world who are suffering from violent persecution, offering spiritual and material assistance to these victims of crimes against humanity. Please pray daily for our Christian brothers and sisters—for their perseverance in faith and hope, the improvement of their living conditions, and the restoration of peace in their land.
Thank you in advance for your prayers and support.
PRAYER to MARY,
MOTHER of the LIFE WITHIN
O Mary, Mother of the Life Within,
all life we entrust to you;
The life of every expectant mother and the child within her womb,
The life of every human body, the life of every human soul;
The life of every newborn child and the life of all grown old.
You held the Lord to your own heart and drew Him so close in.
So draw us now in all our needs, O Mother of the Life Within.
"You formed my inmost being; you knit me in my mother’s womb.” Psalm 139: 13