(YouTube/Samaritans Purse)Franklin Graham appears in a screen capture of a video of his tour in northern Iraq.
Evangelist Franklin Graham has claimed that there are only about seven families currently living in what was once the largest Christian town in Iraq.
On Easter weekend, Graham visited churches and towns that were devastated by ISIS in northern Iraq. One of the towns he visited was Qaraqosh, which used to be the center of Christianity in Iraq, before it was captured by the terror group in August 2014.
“Yesterday we went to the city of Qaraqosh, in Iraq, which used to be home to some 50,000 Christians who were forced to flee for their lives in 2014. Now just a handful, about 7 families, remain,” Graham wrote on Facebook on Easter Sunday.
The evangelist recounted that among the ashes and the debris, he found a Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child shoebox that had once been given to a child. “I couldn’t help but wonder where the child who received this box is today,” he said.
Graham was joined in his tour by former Fox News host, now NBC News anchor, Greta Van Susteren.
Samaritan’s Purse has released a short video to show the destruction caused by ISIS in the Nineveh Plains.
In the video, Van Susteren showed an area outside the church in Qaraqosh where ISIS militants burned Bibles and other Christian books.
“It’s one thing to destroy the buildings, these can be built back but the Church right now is being persecuted and here is a great example of what’s happening to the Church,” Graham remarked.
Graham and Van Susteren also found out that ISIS had used the pulpit of the church for target practice and used machine guns to shoot the crosses off the wall.
The evangelist also noted the slogans written by the militants on the wall of the church. According to Graham, one of the slogans read, “You love life. We love death,” while another stated, “We have come to drink your blood.”
The video also featured the life-saving work being performed by the medical staff and volunteers at the Samaritan’s Purse field hospital just outside of Mosul. The hospital treats Iraqi-led coalition troops, civilians and even ISIS militants that were wounded in the battle to liberate Iraq’s second largest city.
Graham explained that what makes the field hospital different is that those who volunteer to serve in the facility do so because of their faith in Christ.