“The churches of the Middle East have often suffered from terrible waves of persecution and pain,” Pope Francis says

The Churches of the Middle East, as well as in Eastern Europe, Pope Francis said during the “Reunion of Aid Agencies for the Oriental Churches“, have often suffered from “terrible waves of persecution and pain”.

Emigration has also significantly weakened the presence of these Churches in places where they flourished for centuries. Freedom has now returned to some of those regions, the Pope said, but others, particularly in Syria, Iraq and Egypt, are still devastated by “wars and absurd violence perpetrated by fundamentalist terrorism. These experiences are a source of both suffering and salvation, he said, as we experience the Cross of Christ,” Radio Vaticana reports.