(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)
Chaldean Archbishop paulos Faraj Rahho
Chaldean Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho
Photo from

At approximately 5:30 p.m. on February 29, armed men kidnapped Chaldean Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho (65) after ambushing him as he was leaving the Holy Spirit parish in Mosul. The men shot and killed the priest's driver and two guards before abducting him.

On March 2, the Syriac Christian archbishop of Mosul began negotiating with the kidnappers for Rahho's release after receiving a phone call from the kidnappers. The next day, the kidnappers again contacted church officials using Rahho's cell phone and raised the initial ransom amount. At last report, the ransom amount was set at $1.8 million. The captors have yet to give any indication of Rahho's wellbeing. There is considerable concern for his health as he suffers from heart problems that require daily medical treatment. Rahho has reportedly been threatened several times by militant groups demanding extortion money. Local believers see the abduction as an attempt to intimidate and frighten Mosul's Christian community.

Pray that Father Rahho will be released. Pray that he will rely on the Lord to sustain and protect him. Pray that Christians in Mosul will not give in to fear but continue to trust in God (2 Timothy 1:7).

For more information on the persecution of Christains in Iraq, go to the Iraq Country Report.

Current Ministry Project

By working with credible ministry partners, VOMC is providing persecuted Christian women sewing skills training so they can receive a sustainable source of income and thus adequately support their families. In addition, these women are able to seize the opportunities presented to them through their new businesses by serving as effective witnesses for Christ.

Project Fund: Women’s Ministry

Country Information

39,650,145 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Arab (75-80), Kurdish (15-20), Turkoman, Assyrian, and other (5)

Religion (%)
Islam (95-98), Christianity (1), other (1-4)

President Barham Salih (2018)

Government type
Federal parliamentary republic

Legal system

Mixed legal system of civil and Islamic law

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Iraq

Pray for the protection of the remaining believers in Iraq during this time of upheaval and danger. May many churches and Christian relief organizations seize the opportunity to provide greatly needed assistance and ministry to the numerous suffering people of this war-torn nation. As God’s work of healing, provision and restoration takes place, pray that a stable democratic government will be established.


Select a Region

Iraq News

  • Oppression of Iraqi Believers
    Man's hands holding a gospel tract
    Those caught evangelizing could face blasphemy charges.
    Photo: VOMC

    A recent report from the American Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East highlights the desperate circumstances facing many Iraqi Christians – both those residing in their country as well as those living as refu

  • Aid Workers Released
    Devastation from the war
    Some of the devastation
    from the conflict in Iraq.
    Photo: World Watch Monitor

    On January 20th, four humanitarian aid workers from the French organization, SOS Chretiens d'Orient, went missing while in Baghdad. Details were limited, providing no information on those responsible nor the reasons behind

  • Four Foreign Aid Workers Missing
    Devastation in Iraq
    Some of the devastation from the conflict in Iraq.
    Photo: World Watch Monitor

    On January 20th, four workers affiliated with the French organization, SOS Chretiens d'Orient, went missing while in Baghdad. Despite repeated attempts to contact them, no response has been received to date. At last report

  • Families Again Forced to Flee Hometown

    Hilla, Iraq

    Hundreds of Iraqi Christian families had recently returned to their hometown of Teleskuf, after being displaced for years due to attacks perpetrated by the self-proclaimed Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist group, only to be forced to flee their northern Iraq community all over again. These families hav