CWN - An Iraqi archbishop invited to visit New York and Washington by Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ) is unable to make his visit because of a recent executive order by President Donald Trump temporarily barring entry into the US by citizens of Iraq and six other nations.

Archbishop Bashar Warda of Erbil had been scheduled to discuss the persecution of Christians with Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the Catholic Near East Welfare Association (CNEWA), and others, according to the New York archdiocesan newspaper.

Msgr. John Kozar, president of CNEWA, said:

I’m planning a visit to Iraq in March to continue to demonstrate the solidarity we have and to show them we haven’t abandoned them and assure them that they are not forgotten. But I don’t know—will I be permitted to enter that country? As we have stopped the flow from these listed nations, some of them are doing the same in kind.

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Teachings of Christ

“I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26 ESV)

Christ is Born!

Your Nativity, O Christ our God, * has dawned upon the world the light of knowledge. * for through it, those who served the stars * were taught by a star to worship You, the Sun of Righteousness * and to know You, the Dawn from on high. * Glory to You, O Lord! (Troparion, Tone 4)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Today the Virgin gives birth to the Transcendent One, * and the earth offers a cave to the Unapproachable One. * Angels and shepherds sing His glory; * Wise Men journey with a star * for there is born for us an infant Child, the God Who is before all ages. (Kontakion, Tone 3)

Random Proverb

"My son, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments, for length of days and years of life and peace they will add to you." (Proverbs 3:1,2 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

We truly love God and keep His commandments if we restrain ourselves from our pleasures. For he who still abandons himself to unlawful desires certainly does not love God, since he contradicts Him in his own intentions. . . Therefore, he loves God truly, whose mind is not conquered by consent to evil delight. For the more one takes pleasure in lower things, the more he is separated from heavenly love.

St. Gregory the Great