Almost a year ago now, His Holiness Pope Francis called for prayer for the people and Church of Central African Republic.  The country has been torn apart by conflict and religious persecution since December 2012 when Muslim forces rebelled against the government.  Now Christian forces are targeting Muslims in retaliation, a move some are calling genocide.

28.9% of the Central African Republic population is Catholic, according to the most recent government census.  51.4% is Protestant and 15% is Muslim.

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The Washington Post recently reported that Muslim civilians are seeking refuge in Catholic churches.  Now the priests sheltering them have themselves become targets of the Christian anti-balaka coalition.

I had not heard of this conflict, over a year in the making, until recently.  With such little media coverage, commentator Amanda Sperber (UN Dispatch) asked if this was “the worst crisis that nobody’s paying attention to.

Central African Republic is the eight poorest country in Africa and one of the poorest countries in the world.

Central Africa has been placed under the patronage of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  Immaculate Mother, pray for the people of Central African Republic!

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Copyright 2014 Rhonda Ortiz