Most of the news from Iraq is bad…and some would say it is ignored.

Yet thanks to the “surge” (and the change of tactics to those similar to what Magsaysay used to clean up Luzon), small candles of hope are starting to be lit in that country.

So refugees are starting to trickle back.

And Christian churches are starting to repair damage caused by the Islamofascist haters of all who don’t follow their murderous creeds (and one might note this bigotry includes hatreds of Muslims who don’t follow their version of Islam…hence the bombing of the holy shrines of Shia Islam).

So both Iran and the UN are busy repairing the Shrine of Samarra. But what about ordinary houses of worship?

Will a democratic Iraq encourage ethnic cleansing, or will neighborhoods go back to their prewar neighborliness, where Sunnis not connected with Saddam’s war crimes will be welcome, and Christians allowed to worship without fear?

One example of this triumph of ordinary life can be found on Michael Yon’s website.

He writes:

I photographed men and women, both Christians and Muslims, placing a cross atop the St. John’s Church in Baghdad. They had taken the cross from storage and a man washed it before carrying it up to the dome.

A Muslim man had invited the American soldiers from “Chosen” Company 2-12 Cavalry to the church, where I videotaped as Muslims and Christians worked and rejoiced at the reopening of St John’s, an occasion all viewed as a sign of hope.


The Christopher’s had a saying: That it is better to light one little candle than curse the darkness.

So the cooperation of Muslim neighbors to help replace the cross is one such candle to remind us that sometimes things do go back to normal, and that the face of Islam is that of a neighbor helping neighbor, not just the shouting voice of hatred and intolorance that it too often seen on television reports.


Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. Her website is Finest Kind Clinic and Fishmarket. 

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