As persecution increases, your family needs your support to keep faith and hope alive
- Leader: President Fuad Masum
- Population: 38.65 million (230,000 Christians)
- Main Religion: Islam
- Government: Parliamentary democracy
- World Watch List Rank: 7
- Source of Persecution: Islamic extremism
ONE MILLION VOICES OF HOPE: SIGN THE PETITION
We asked church leaders and Christians from Syria and Iraq what would give them hope. They highlighted three things: equality, dignity and responsibility. Speak out with them.
Give to bring hope
Our partners are providing thousands of families with vital aid, such as food and medicines, and long-term support, such as trauma care and loans for small businesses. But none of this work would be possible without your gifts and prayers.
OTHER WAYS TO BRING HOPE TO THE MIDDLE EAST
Speak out to our government in advocacy and to God in prayer on behalf of our church family in the Middle East.
Iraq was once home to one of the largest Christian communities in the Middle East; today, the church in Iraq is in danger of disappearing completely.
The self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS) has forced thousands of Christians to flee their homes, although IS were driven back from some areas in 2016, and some Christians are beginning to consider returning. Even in areas of Iraq that aren't controlled by IS, Sharia is the basis of the law, and Muslims are forbidden from leaving Islam.
- Many Christians have been abducted, attacked or sexually assaulted by IS militants. Ask God to protect Christians from attacks, and to change the hearts of IS members
- Open Doors local partners have been supporting thousands of displaced families - pray for wisdom for them to know how best to support those who wish to return to their villages if and when it is safe to do so
- A few Christians live secretly in IS held areas - pray for their safety.
How we help
Open Doors has been working with local partners and churches in Iraq for over 20 years to support the church through:
- Providing trauma training and biblical training for church leaders and Muslim-background believers
- Crisis relief - Open Doors partners are currently providing around 15,000 families with relief aid
- Socio-economic development projects such as microloans for displaced people
- Distributing Bibles and Christian literature and supporting Kurdish translations
- Structural aid such as funding church repairs/equipment.
Listen to Farouk Hammo
Iraqi church leader Farrouk Hammo talks about trusting God for the impossible. Recorded at the Greatest Adventure, the Open Doors UK 60th anniversary celebration in November 2015.
Latest News from Iraq:
- Stone factory brings hope as battle for Mosul continues
- Displaced Christians celebrate Christmas as they prepare to return home
- Martin returns to Karamles
- 7,000 Christian refugees to celebrate with 'Return Festival' as Nineveh Plains liberation continues
- Helping Christians prepare for the long journey home