Syria: Report highlights ‘brutality against Christian clerics’, with five still missing

Fr. Paolo Dall’Oglio, a Jesuit priest who was abducted in Syria in July 2013, is one of the clerics who disappeared and whose fate remains unknown. (Photo: veDro via Flickr / Creative Commons)
A report about violence against Syrian church leaders during the ongoing civil war shows that clerics have been beaten, abducted – five are still missing – and killed, and that 2013 was the worst year. In ‘The Good Shepherd: A Report on Brutality against Christian Clerics in Syria March 25, . . . Read More

23 Catholic missionaries killed in 2017

Mourners at the funeral of the popular activist Filipino priest Fr. Marcelito Paez
At least 23 people working for the Catholic Church were killed in 2017, a Vatican agency has said. For the eighth consecutive year the place where most violent deaths occurred was America, where 11 people lost their lives. Ten pastoral workers were killed in Africa, five in Nigeria, and two . . . Read More

Another ancient Assyrian monastery bulldozed

Photographs posted Thursday on Twitter accounts linked to the Islamic State destroyed in the past six months by jihadist fighters. The 5th century Mar Elian Monastery in Syria’s western Homs province was located on the outskirts of Qaryatain city, captured by IS militants two weeks ago from Assad regime control. An . . . Read More

Jihadists release Syrian priest, 22 elderly Assyrians

Jihadists release Syrian priest, 22 elderly Assyrians
Five weeks after Fr. Antoine Boutros and his driver were kidnapped on their way to Sunday mass in southern Syria’s Suweida province on July 12, the Catholic parish priest has been released. Disclosure of the 50-year-old priest’s release on Aug. 15 came from the Melkite Greek Catholic Patriarch of Antioch, . . . Read More

Iraqi Franciscan priest abducted in northwest Syria

Father Dhiya Aziz was kidnapped by militants from Yacoubieh, Idlib Province, where he serves as parish priest on Sat 4th July. The militants were purportedly taking him for a brief meeting with the Emir who exercises authority in that area, which is under the control of the Al-Qaeda affiliate group, . . . Read More

All Knayeh hostages free

All Knayeh hostages free
NOTE: This report, originally posted Oct. 8, is updated to include the release of all hostages The last of a group of 20 Syrian Christians kidnapped Oct. 5 have been released as their pastor awaits trial before an Islamic court. Rev. Hanna Jallouf, a Franciscan priest in the northeastern Syria town of Knayeh, was abducted with about 20 . . . Read More

Italian priest still unaccounted for in Syria

Italian priest still unaccounted for in Syria
Conflicting reports are emerging about the whereabouts and welfare of an Italian Jesuit priest who went missing almost one month ago. Reuters reported on July 29 that Fr. Paolo Dall’Oglio had been abducted by Islamists with links to Al-Qaeda in the northern Syrian city of Raqqa, but the Vatican would . . . Read More