- At his Angelus audience on Sunday, February 28, Pope Benedict XVI repeated his plea for the safety of Christians in Iraq. The Pope also offers his prayerful condolences to Chilean earthquake victims and encouraged international donors to help the survivors.

"With great sadness did I learn the tragic news of the killing of a number of Christians in the city of Mosul, and with great concern have I followed other episodes of violence committed against defenseless people of various religious confessions in the martyred land of Iraq," the Pope said. He issued an appeal to Iraqi government leaders to "make every effort to restore security to the population, in particular to the most vulnerable religious minorities," and asked other world leaders to help Iraq establish "a future of reconciliation and peace."

Source(s): these links will take you to other sites, in a new window.


O Mother of God, in giving birth you preserved virginity; * and in falling asleep you did not forsake the world. * You are the Mother of Life and have been transferred to life, * and through your prayers you deliver our souls from death. (Troparion - Tone 1)

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

Neither the tomb nor death could detain the Mother of God, * who is unsleeping in her prayers and our unfailing hope in her intercession; * for He Who dwelt in her ever-virgin womb, * transferred to Life the Mother of Life. (Kontakion - Tone 2)