Since the outbreak of ISIS in Iraq, Hundreds of thousands of Christians have been forced to leave their ancient homeland, the Nineveh Plain. Some of these Christians, in an effort to hold on to the community they worshipped with for generations, sought refuge together as an entire parish. 25 of these parishes are now located in Dohuk and Erbil, in the Kurdish region of northern Iraq. These Parishes in Exile come from both the Syriac Catholic Church and the Syriac Orthodox Church. Exiled from their ancient home, they go to extreme lengths to ensure that they may continue to practice their faith even though they reside in a foreign refugee camp.
Patriarch Joseph Younan of the Syriac Catholic Church, and Patriarch Gregorius Aphrem of the Syriac Orthodox Church have expressed grave concern about the spiritual life of their displaced communities. In total, 5,000 families, or 25,000 people have attempted to rebuild their faith lives in refugee camps across Northern Iraq. Only with your help can these communities survive together as they await the day they may return to their own communities in Syria.
SPC will be initiating a micro finance program for the parishes in exile. These communities have faced death, and traveled hundreds of miles together. They are determined to succeed and become a thriving economic entity to improve their lives as refugees. They have the heart and the faith, but lack the capital necessary to begin rebuilding their lives. With $500 a baker forced to leave his shop in Syria can buy all of the wheat, butter, eggs and other ingredients necessary to produce $3000 in product in Northern Iraq.
Bishop Rabban Al-Qas, and SPC have been building schools for refugee Christians, and now the parents of those children need your help to allow them to care for themselves and their fellow Christians. Please open your heart today and give a Christian family the capital they need to rebuild their lives.