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Pope visits Iraq - 10th March 2021 View All

This is Pope Francis. He is the head of the Catholic church. He visited Iraq.

This trip was important for Francis. He wanted to show his love for Iraq.

It was Pope Francis's first trip in 15 months. The Pope usually travels a lot. But last year, he had to stay at home. There were coronavirus rules. Pope Francis couldn't travel.

Life can be difficult in Iraq. There was a big problem. A terrorist group controlled part of the country. The group's name was ISIS.

ISIS killed lots of people in Iraq. And lots of Christians left the country. 20 years ago, there were 1.5 million Christians in Iraq. Now, only 250,000 Christians live there.

On his trip, Pope Francis met Grand Ayatollah Sistani. He is an important Muslim. The Ayatollah and the Pope talked. They said Christians in Iraq need to feel safe.

Francis spoke in this old church. Fighting kills lots of ordinary people. The Pope prayed for them.

Pope Francis: "Today we raise our voices in prayer to Almighty God for all the victims of war and armed conflict. Here in Mosul, the tragic consequences of war and hostility are all too evident."

Pope Francis prayed with Christians in this sports stadium. He said he will always love Iraq.

Pope Francis: "Now the time draws near for my return to Rome. Yet Iraq will always remain with me, in my heart." View Less

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