Middle East Christians try to enjoy Christmas Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90
Middle East

A Tragic Christmas for Middle East Christians

“Everything has changed this year… there is nothing to celebrate in this country”


The Christians of Iraq and Syria have all but disappeared, and today the Lebanese are leaving their bankrupt country. All across the Middle East, the Christian presence is in decline. At no time is that felt more than at Christmas.

From Beirut to Baghdad, from Cairo to Damascus, Middle East Christians celebrated Christmas under the dark shadows of Islamist threats, ongoing violence and financial crisis. Many are no longer inclined to cling to their ancestral lands.

In Beirut, pastor Amal Saad didn’t even want to celebrate Christmas. In a telephone interview with Israel Today he said, “Everything has changed this year, we are no longer in an atmosphere that allows us to celebrate, there is nothing to celebrate in this country.” Part of the Lebanese pastor’s house was destroyed by the Beirut explosion that killed 200 people last August. He recalled that in past years the joyful atmosphere in which local Christians would go out shopping for Christmas gifts for their children.

This year, Pastor Saad donated...


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