6-June-2007 -- Catholic News Agency |

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Muslim Extremists Forcibly Turn Catholic Church into Mosque

Rome, Jun 6, 2007 (CNA).- On the same day as Father Ragheed Ganniís funeral, Muslim fundamentalists sent another message of hatred to Catholics, this time attacking two churches in Iraq. Fr. Ragheed, along with three deacons were killed just this past Sunday after they had finished celebrating Mass.

According to the AINA news agency, two churches were attacked in the Baghdad district of Dora. At St. John the Baptistís in Hay Al-Athoriyeen, several security guards who protect the church were killed, and St. Jacobís in Hay al Asya was vandalized and forcibly turned into a mosque. St. Jacobís had previously been attacked in October of 2004.

The attacks coincided with the funeral Mass for Father Ganni which was being celebrated in Karamles by Archbishop Faraj Rahho of Mosul amidst tight security. The minister of finance of the regional Kurdish government, Sarkis Aghajan, attended the service.

On June 7 in Rome Msgr. Philip Najim, procurator of the Patriarchate of Babylon of the Chaldeans, will celebrate a Mass in memoriam of Father Ganni and the three deacons who were killed with him.

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