The papal charity Aid to the Church in Need reports that His Beatitude Louis Raphael I Sako, Chaldean Catholic Patriarch of Babylon, recently expressed his gratitude for the financial support that Christians throughout the world have contributed to their brothers and sisters in the Middle East, but said what they need more than this is our prayer and fasting:
We are all very thankful for this help. However, what is most needed is mercy. For this reason I would like to ask you at the beginning of this Lenten period: pray and fast for peace in our country! Pray and fast that God has mercy on us! Pray and fast that we may remain in our homelands; that the refugees may return to their villages and cities. Pray and fast that we may remain in our beloved homeland. So that we may also experience a resurrection from the rubble, an Easter in the land of Abraham.
Please, as we enter into the holy season of Lent, do not forget those whose livelihood - and even their lives - are at stake because they have given themselves to Jesus Christ.