The Roman Colosseum along with two churches in Mosul and Aleppo will be lit up by red lights later this month to draw attention to the global persecution of Christians.
“Christians are the victims of at least 75 percent of all religiously-motivated violence and oppression,” declared the latest report from Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), the group organizing the event, and moreover “the extent of this persecution is largely ignored by our media.”
In a gesture meant to combat global indifference to the plight of persecuted Christians, on Saturday, Feb. 24, one of Rome’s most iconic structures—the Colosseum—will be illuminated in red, representing Christians who have shed their blood for the faith.
At the same time, prominent churches in Syria and Iraq will be illuminated with red lights as well. In Aleppo, the St. Elijah Maronite Cathedral will be lit up in red, as will the Church of St. Paul in Mosul. Turning on the lights in Mosul, said the Chaldean Catholic Patriarch Louis Raphael Sako I, “means bringing back hope to Iraqi Christians who have suffered so much.”
According to Alfredo Mantovano, president of ACN-Italy, the media event is meant as a denunciation of “the martyrdom suffered by our brothers and sisters.” It is our intention, he said, “to involve them directly through two of the communities who have suffered the most in recent years, those of Syria and Iraq.”
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