Tag Archives: Iraq

The first liturgical Protestant service at Contingency Operating Base, Basra

Thanks to First Lieutenant Shamika Hill for sharing this article and these photos.


Chaplain (1st Lt.) Barry Malone, Contingency Operating Base Basra hospital chaplain, and Chaplain (Lt. Col.) Tim Mallard, 1st Infantry Division chaplain, begin the liturgical Protestant Worship service with the processional. This was the first such service on COB Basra. Liturgical services have roots in Catholicism and follow many of the same styles of worship and traditions such as communal prayer, reading and hearing the word, a response of confession, weekly celebration of the Eucharist and the following of the church calendar. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Jason Kemp, 1st Inf Div, USD-S PAO)

By Sgt. Jason Kemp
1st Infantry Division, USD-S PAO

COB BASRA, Iraq – The first liturgical Protestant Worship Service was held at the Contingency Operating Base Basra chapel on Palm Sunday, March 28, 2010.

“Soldiers come from a variety of faith traditions, and we have some that come from traditions such as Lutheran, Anglican, Episcopalian or Reformed who are used to several different types of things in worship that are distinct and we are trying to incorporate those things into this worship service,” said Chaplain (Lt. Col.) Tim Mallard, 1st Infantry Division Chaplain.

Liturgical services have roots in Catholicism and follow many of the same styles of worship and traditions such as communal prayer, reading and hearing the word, a response of confession, weekly celebration of the Eucharist and the following of the church calendar.

“Our worship is based off the church calendar. So we will be following the lectionary and base our preaching off of that,” Mallard said. “The church calendar follows certain colors and themes throughout the year in accordance with numerous other traditions around the world.”

The Church Year is a series of holy days and seasons that mark the passage of time throughout a year-long cycle. The Christian calendar is organized around two major centers of “Sacred Time”: Advent, Christmas and Epiphany; and Lent, Holy Week and Easter, concluding at Pentecost. The rest of the year following Pentecost is known as “Ordinary Time,” from the word ordinal, which simply means counted.

“It really is tied to Lutheranism, that arose out of Germany, or Anglicanism, which arose out of England. Then, with the founding of our country, those denominations or traditions came to America,” said Mallard.


Chaplain (1st Lt.) Barry Malone, Contingency Operating Base Basra hospital chaplain, and Chaplain (Lt. Col.) Tim Mallard, 1st Infantry Division chaplain, conduct the celebration of the Eucharist during the first liturgical Protestant service on COB Basra. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Jason Kemp, 1st Inf Div, USD-S PAO)


Chaplain (1st Lt.) Barry Malone, Contingency Operating Base Basra hospital chaplain, conducts the celebration of the Eucharist.

Kidnappings, deaths in Iraq throughout Holy Week

There has been no rest for Iraqi Christians following last week’s burial of the kidnapped and murdered Chaldean Archbishop Paulus Faraj Rahho.

Kirkuk’s Chaldean Archbishop Luis Sako told Compass Direct News that he knows of “people threatened, people kidnapped, people killed, this Holy Week.”

“We could close our churches in Mosul to protect ourselves and say to everyone that we don’t accept the situation,” Dominican Father Najeeb Mikhail said to Compass Direct News. “Or we can hold all the celebrations, and maybe we will receive some bombs or attacks.”

During a Monday mass celebrated in the memory of Archbishop Rahho, Pope Benedict XVI said, “These are the days in which we re-live the last moments in Jesus’ earthly life: tragic hours, full of love and fear, especially in the disciples’ souls.”

Funeral mass for Iraqi Archbishop

As we reported yesterday with the help of our affiliate Compass Direct News, the Chaldean Catholic Archbishop of Mosul, Paulus Faraj Rahho, was found dead Thursday, two weeks after he was kidnapped.

Mourners attended a two-hour funeral mass today.

During the mass, “The patriarch of Iraq’s Chaldean Catholic church, Emmanuel III Delly, tearfully urged Christians on Friday not to seek revenge for the death of the archbishop of Mosul, whose body was found in a shallow grave two weeks after being kidnapped,” reported AFP in this article.

The BBC has a brief story here.

Reuters UK has more details here.

Chaldean Christians belong to a branch of the Roman Catholic Church. An estimated 800,000 Chaldean Christians live in Iraq.

Death of Iraqi Archbishop fuels speculation

ISTANBUL — An Iraqi archbishop kidnapped and held for ransom for 14 days has been found dead in northern Iraq in what appears to be an attempt to force Christians out of the city, church leaders said. The body of Chaldean Archbishop of Mosul, Paulus Faraj Rahho, was recovered at approximately 2 p.m. in Mosul , Kirkuk ’s Chaldean leader Louis Sako said. “They found him just a half hour ago, and now they have taken him to the hospital for the analysis,” Sako told Compass Direct News. “We don’t know when he was killed.” A medical examiner at Mosul ’s morgue told The Associated Press that the archbishop’s body showed no signs of being shot. A priest in Mosul told Compass Direct News today that the real motive for impossible ransom demands and the archbishop’s killing was to push the Christians out of the city. “They are pressuring us to leave Mosul and leave our church,” said the priest. “And many families in Mosul are afraid, because if they killed the bishops and priests, then…”

-Compass Direct News