Assisting displaced Iraqis and Syrians
March 21st, 2016
By Sister Maureen McInerney, OP
On behalf of the Dominican Sisters of San Rafael, I extend my gratitude to the U.S. Catholic bishops for their clear advocacy for some of the world’s most vulnerable children, women and men: The millions of Iraqis and Syrians displaced by war and internal conflict.
Since 1999 the U.S. Dominican family – sisters, friars and laity – have been actively engaged with our Dominican family in Iraq. We expressed our support through the years of economic sanctions with prayer, advocacy, financial support and delegations. Between 2001 and 2015 we welcomed seven Iraqi Dominican sisters to this country, assisting them with education and supporting their efforts to serve their community and the people of Iraq upon returning home. We have organized educational events, lobby days, protests and fasts. We’ve supported Iraqi refugees who’ve arrived in the United States by serving in local resettlement offices. And we’ve raised more than a half-million dollars in funds to support their current ministries in Iraq.
As we approach the 13th anniversary of the ill-conceived invasion of Iraq, the news from Iraq and Syria is increasingly dire. As the process of democratic elections in our nation continues, we urge our fellow CSF readers to add to the defense-of-life issues they consider as important criteria: Does the candidate have a plan to restore peace, security, and justice for our Iraqi Dominican sisters and brothers and the millions of Syrian refugees now displaced by war?
Sister Maureen McInerney, OP
Prioress General, Dominican Sisters of San Rafael
From March 24, 2016 issue of Catholic San Francisco.
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