Iraqi Christians Return to Massacred Church to Celebrate Christmas
BAGHDAD — Hundreds of Christians packed Baghdad’s Our Lady of Salvation church for Christmas on Saturday, defying threats of attacks less than two months after militants massacred worshippers and priests there.
Security was extremely tight, with forces armed with pistols and assault rifles guarding the area and a 10-foot high (three-metre) concrete wall topped with gleaming razor wire surrounding the church.
All cars entering the area were searched, and worshippers were patted down twice before being allowed into the church.
The mood was sombre after an October 31 attack claimed by Al-Qaeda affiliate the Islamic State of Iraq in which gunmen stormed the church, leaving two priests, 44 worshippers and seven security personnel dead.
The church, which was filled with more than 300 worshippers, still bears signs of the attack, its walls pockmarked from bullets and the destroyed wooden pews replaced with plastic and metal chairs.
Not much to say about this, except, God bless them, every one.