Palm Sunday celebrations mark revival of life in Qaraqosh

For many Christian families in Qaraqosh, this Easter is particularly special, as they will be celebrating it at home for the first time since fleeing the city in 2014.

The city, located in northern Iraq’s Nineveh Plains, was occupied by the Islamic State group for over three years before its liberation in October 2017.

Venerable Benedict of Nursia

Saint Benedict, founder of Western monasticism, was born in the Italian city of Nursia in the year 480. When he was fourteen years of age, the saint’s parents sent him to Rome to study. Unsettled by the immorality around him, he decided to devote himself to a different sort of life.

At first Saint Benedict settled near the church of the holy Apostle Peter in the village of Effedum, but news of his ascetic life compelled him to go farther into the mountains. There he encountered the hermit Romanus, who tonsured him into monasticism and directed him to live in a remote cave at Subiaco. From time to time, the hermit would bring him food.

Church accommodating 700 faithful to open in Qatar by end of year

A pre-Paschal charity fair was held in Doha recently to raise funds towards the construction of a church that will accommodate 700 Orthodox faithful in the capital city of Qatar. Construction on the church, which is under the jurisdiction of the Jerusalem Patriarchate, should be finished by the end of the year, reports RIA-Novosti.

The 21 Decapitated Copts – A German author on the importance of the Church of Martyrs for the West

A book by the German author Martin Mosebach (Frankfurt) is widely discussed in Germany. It was published recently and is titled “Die 21 – Eine Reise ins Land der koptischen Märtyrer, Reinbek: Rowohlt 2018” (The 21 – A Journey into the Land of Coptic Martyrs”). Mosebach writes about the families of those who were beheaded by the Islamic state.

Record Few Children Baptized in Sweden Due to ‘Demographic Change’

The drop in the number of baptisms is seen as part of the overall trend of Swedes leaving the church; immigration hasn’t reversed this trend, as most hail from non-Christian countries.

Almost 50,000 newborns were baptized in the Church of Sweden in 2017, which corresponds to a record low 42 percent, Swedish Radio reported. One of the reasons is that more parents come from abroad and lack any connection with the Church of Sweden.