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Religious Sisters in Iraq: Serving Persecuted Christians Until Exhaustion and Death

By EUK Mamie Foundation

Sr. Sabria Momika, O.P.

Photographer:

Sr. Sabria Momika, O.P.

EUK Mamie Foundation HM Television has just published one of its most moving testimonies. The series In the Footsteps of the Nazarene communicates the sufferings of our brothers and sisters who are persecuted throughout the world for their faith. This current video is the first time we have been able to interview an Iraqi religious Sister. It is the first time that we are going to hear from the lips of a woman described with a woman’s heart the suffering of the Christians who are forced to abandon their homes and leave everything behind in order to maintain their faith.

Sister Sabrina Momika, OP, was assigned to Qaraqosh (Iraq) when, on August 6, 2014, she had to quickly flee, along with the rest of her community and all of the Christians of the city, before the imminent taking of the city by the Islamic State. Time and time again, she is overcome with emotion while she recalls the painful situations and experiences lived. And time and time again, she pulls herself together to continue sharing her story, which she does not what to interrupt, although she had to be filmed with her back to the camera for security reasons.

She belongs to the Congregation of the “Dominican Sisters of Saint Catherine of Siena,” a community founded in Iraq in 1887, whose General House is in Mosul. Because of the terrible invasion of the ISIS, 23 of their convents in the plain of Nineveh were usurped and destroyed, ruining many of the projects they were carrying out at the service of the local population. They fled to Ankawa, in the Iraqi Kurdistan that welcomed more than 150,000 Christians persecuted by the ISIS on that terrible night. But as soon as they arrived in Ankawa, they themselves being crammed into the little convent that had taken them in, these generous Sisters did not think of themselves. As true spiritual mothers, they have dedicated themselves completely to an enormous mission at the service of the refugees. This is how Sr. Sabria describes it: “We truly forgot about our health and ourselves. We did not think of anything else but the people: that they might not lose their faith, and that they might conserve the faith they had received from their parents.” The final result for them has been the death of eighteen Sisters due to illness and exhaustion. Other Sisters as she tells us of a beautiful case of an 82 year old nun offered their lives to the Lord so that God’s blessing may descend on His people suppressed by persecution and suffering.

Aug 10, 2017

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