Priest’s elderly parents kidnapped

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Written by ICC
A Chaldean Catholic church in Turkey. (Dosseman/CC)
The elderly parents of a priest were recently kidnapped from their village by unidentified men.

The village is one of just a few Assyrian villages remaining in the ??rnak Province of southeastern Turkey. (Google Maps)International Christian Concern reports that the parents of Father Ramzi Diril, a Chaldean Catholic priest, have disappeared in southeastern Turkey. They were taken from their home in the village of Meer, in ?irnak Province.

Hurmuz and Simoni Diril had returned to this village ten years prior and were the last Assyrians and Christians remaining in the village.

Father Ramzi had arrived home on Sunday to visit his parents when he found their house empty and that they had gone missing the day before.

Winter conditions are currently harsh in ?irnak, which had made the already difficult landscape challenging to search.

The family has requested prayer during this time.

The pressure and dangers faced by Assyrian Christians in Southeastern Turkey has caused many to leave. Father Ramzi is the only Chaldean Catholic priest in charge of pastoral work in Turkey. He travels often to minister to the needs of Turkey’s few remaining Assyrian Christian community.

According to Wikipedia the Chaldean Catholic Church, “is an Eastern Syriac particular church of the Catholic Church, under the Holy See of the Catholicos-Patriarch of Babylon, maintaining full communion with the Bishop of Rome and the rest of the Catholic Church. The Chaldean Catholic Church presently comprises an estimated 500,000 people who are ethnic Assyrians indigenous to northern Iraq, and areas bordering it in southeast Turkey, northeast Syria and northwest Iran.”