As Iraqi forces continue to liberate lands from the Islamic State, many Christians who have returned to their villages have found their churches destroyed by the terrorist group. Some Muslims are reaching out to the persecuted Christians as they try to rebuild their communities.
In a church in the city of Mosul, a Muslim named Marwan decided to build a cross to replace the one destroyed by ISIS.
Jeremy Courtney, co-founder and executive director of Preemptive Love Coalition (PLC), found out about Marwan’s efforts to help his Christian neighbors.
In a video posted on the charity’s Facebook page, Courtney explained that Marwan could not accept that people who claimed to be Muslims desecrated the church and destroyed the signs and icons revered by Christians.
“Marwan is a Muslim. But when Marwan came into this church he couldn’t accept the fact that these other guys who claimed to be Muslims were rampaging through this place, destroying the signs and the icons of his Christian friends, his Christian compatriots, his Christian neighbours,” Courtney narrated, as reported by Christian Today.
“And so our Muslim friend Marwan helps fashion this cross together just to say… [to] his Christian neighbours and [on behalf of] his Muslim neighbours, his Muslim faith: ‘We’re in this with you. This cross stands for something. This cross belongs here in our country. This cross belongs here among our friends,'” he continued.
Courtney and his wife, Jessica, founded PLC when they moved to Iraq in 2006 at the height of the war so that they can provide aid to people in desperate need. The organization started out by providing life-saving surgery to Iraqi children who were suffering from heart conditions, but it expanded its role after the rise of ISIS In 2014.
Although PLC is not religiously affiliated, it describes itself as a “faith-oriented community.” Muslims, Christians and even those who do not profess any faith work alongside each other.
In an effort to show God’s love to ISIS militants, the charity went to a detainment center on the outskirts of Fallujah last year to bring some food and water to captured jihadis. Courtney believes that both Muslims and Christians are commanded to love their enemies.
Source: The Christian Times