Vigil planned for Middle East, floods


SPRINGFIELD-Religious and civil leaders plan to hold a vigil Thursday evening to pray for Christians in the Middle East and those affected by recent Illinois floods.

The vigil, to be held at St. Anthony Greek Orthodox Parish in Springfield at 6:30 Thursday, includes representatives of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago and the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago. In a press release, organizers said they also expect Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner to attend and “share his thoughts on those who suffered recently with the flooding in Illinois.”

The struggles of  Christian minorities in the Middle East has drawn attention in the United States and has also led to criticism of perceived U.S. inaction to stop the problem.

“While it may seem like we in the United States have little ability to change matters in the Middle East and elsewhere, I am convinced that change can be achieved through added education and attention to the problem,” said Bishop Demetrios of Mokissos, the Chancellor of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago in a statement.

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