Pope Francis made an historic visit to Iraq from 5 - 8 March 2021 - the first of any Pope to the country. In this section we celebrate the visit and speak to the Syriac and Chaldean Catholic leaders about their Christian communities and hopes for the country.
Iraq is a country close to Pope Francis’ heart and he has long planned to visit. The theme of his visit focused on unity and mutual respect. It was inspired by the Scripture passage from Matthew 23: 8 “You are all brothers.”
You can look back on the moving and inspiring four-day visit by using the news links on our page that carries the Pope’s itinerary for the Iraq visit.
Cardinal Vincent Nichols visited Erbil in the north in April 2015 – less than a year after ISIS insurgents swept through the region taking Iraq’s second city Mosul, wreaking havoc and killing and displacing thousands. In this interview, Cardinal Nichols speaks to us about his strong memories from the visit – not to mention the people he met and the church-run projects he witnessed in action. The country and its people are still firmly in his heart.
Listen to our four full podcasts on Iraq with Patriarch Louis Sako, Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop Bashar Warda and Archbishop Nizar Semaan using this playlist.
Cardinal Vincent Nichols visited Erbil in Iraqi Kurdistan in April 2015 – less than a year after ISIS insurgents swept through the region taking Iraq’s second city Mosul.
Syriac Catholic Archbishop Nizar Semaan talks about his home city of Qaraqosh. Pope Francis will pray the Angelus in the newly-reconstructed Church of the Immaculate Conception where Archbishop Nizar was ordained in 2019.