Every second Saturday of the month, 4 pm - Divine Liturgy in English of Sunday - Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral of the Holy Family, Duke Street, London W1K 5BQ. Followed by refreshments.
Next Liturgy: Saturday 9th September, 4pm

To purchase The Divine Liturgy: an Anthology for Worship (in English), order from the Sheptytsky Institute here, or the St Basil's Bookstore here.
To purchase the Divine Praises, the Divine Office of the Byzantine-Slav rite (in English), order from the Eparchy of Parma here.
The new catechism in English, Christ our Pascha, is available from the Eparchy of the Holy Family and the Society. Please email johnchrysostom@btinternet.com for details.

"It's Now or Never: The Return of the Eastern Christians to Iraq and Syria" - John Pontifex of Aid to the Church in Need gives the annual Christopher Morris Lecture in the Society's 90th year. Monday 27th November at the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral of the Holy Family. 6-15 pm Divine Liturgy, 7-15 pm Lecture, 8-15 pm Reception. £10 donation requested. RSVP to johnchrysostom@btinternet.com







Friday, 4 July 2014

Catholic aid organizations scramble to meet Iraqi needs :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)

by Elise Harris, Vatican City, Jul 3, 2014 (CNA/EWTN News)

In a tumultuous Iraq facing an increasingly uncertain future, Catholic charity organizations are rallying to meet the immediate needs of those afflicted by ongoing violence.

“Movement is pretty limited, so all numbers and information we get is anecdotal,” Kris Ozar, correspondent for Catholic Relief Services in Egypt, an international relief agency of the Church, told CNA June 30.

“The one thing that’s certain and that I’m hearing around here is that nobody knows, nobody knows,” he said. “Nobody knows where people are going, nobody knows how long people are staying, people are renting houses but for a temporary time because they’re expensive.”

“It’s a lot of uncertainty, absolutely a lot of uncertainty.”

Although Ozar is officially assigned to Egypt, he has been sent by the organization to Iraq in order to assist in giving aid to refugees. Having fled Mosul only 15 minutes before it was mortared by ISIS June 10, Ozar returned to Egypt briefly, and arrived back to Iraq June 30.

Aiming to establish a Sunni state within Syria and Iraq, which is a majority Shia region, ISIS, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria Group (ISIS), launched its offensive in Iraq in early June, overtaking its second-largest city of Mosul June 10.

The group now controls much of north and north-central Iraq, including the city of Tal Afar.

Over the weekend, displaced persons who scattered after the June 10 attack at Mosul began to return to the region, with many taking refuge in the neighboring city of Erbil, where they are under the protection of the Kurdish army.

“When I was talking to displaced families it was a buffet of needs,” Ozar noted. “But the greatest needs are food, mattresses, spending money, they need to have cell phone credit to call their families and to be in communication. They have medical needs.”

Since many families are now forced to sleep in local schools, “they need mattresses, they need sheets and blankets, they need soap, they need clothes. You name it they need it.”

“People literally picked up and ran with what they had with them,” he said, recalling how he had come across a newborn baby that was taken from the hospital in Mosul only a few hours after being born in order to flee from ISIS forces.

Despite the practical needs refugees are facing, which also include electricity and fuel, “the greatest thing they’re looking for is security and peace of mind,” Ozar explained.

“'What are your greatest needs?' 'We want peace. Can you give my family and I peace?'” was the looming question he was faced with when assisting the refugees, and is a task he has found “a bit daunting.”

In an interview with Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need published July 2, the Chaldean patriarch of Iraq, Raphael I Sako, explained that the country will “need help in the future to create a Christian infrastructure when the situation has stabilized.”

“We will need new houses, and we will have to rebuild the factories and agriculture. The remaining Christian towns will have to be modernized. We will rely on outside help for all this.”

Explaining how this is Iraq’s “darkest hour” not only for Christians but for everyone in the country, the patriarch expressed his concern that Christianity will cease to exist due to the number of people fleeing, stating that this would be “a hiatus for our history.”

Read the rest of the article here: Catholic aid organizations scramble to meet Iraqi needs :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)
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