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A group of ten elderly Christians, some with disabilities have been ‘expelled’ by Islamic State militants for refusing to convert to Islam.

They spent two days travelling and arrived in Kirkuk on 7 January, an area now under the control of Kurdish Peshmerga Forces. The group had been living in Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, for nearly three months after IS militants forced them out of a nursing home in Qaraqosh on 24 October.

The militants stole the elderly Christians’ money, jewellery and IDs.

The group were pressured to say the Islamic Shahada, which is a spoken confession of faith to become Muslim. Rahel, one of the women from the group said “We did not want to become Muslim; we just wanted to leave”.

“When we were in Qaraqosh, IS used to beat us every day with their weapons or hands,” one of the elderly men said.’

“They had thrown us out from our villages and our homes, so they could occupy them and then we were all clumped together in a residence in Mosul. We managed to survive thanks to the assistance of some Muslim families, who brought us food and what we needed. Then, at some point, those of the Caliphate told us we could stay there only if we converted to Islam. I refused. If you want, send me away,” said one of the group.

Sources: World Watch Monitor, Agenzia Fides

Prayer Points

  • Thank the Lord for his protection of this group; pray He will give them the physical, emotional and spiritual strength to overcome their ordeal.
  • Ask the Lord to provide all the needs of these faithful Christians and the many others who have been forced to leave their homes.
  • Pray for the members of Islamic State, that God may remove hatred from their hearts and bring many to conviction and repentance. Pray He will give them opportunity to behold the one true God.