Friday, September 5, 2014

The vicar of Baghdad

With the chaos happening in Iraq, I think this Vice documentary is an eye-opening testament to all the good that is going on there, too.

British-born priest Andrew White has spent the past 15 years preaching peace and reconciliation on the streets of Baghdad. He lives and works in areas few Westerners dare to go. The most destitute, poverty-striken areas in the Red Zone is White's mission field.

Dubbed the "Vicar of Baghdad" because his church is the only remaining Anglican church in Iraq, White does very important work for the Iraqi people, including brokering communication between Shia and Sunni leaders through his Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East.   

White's Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis 17 years ago hasn't stopped him from helping people. Neither have death threats, kidnappings and being "locked up in rooms with bits of finger and toe and things." 

"I can honestly say I have never been afraid," White says at the end of the film. "Because perfect love casts out all fear. And what we have here (looking out at Baghdad neighborhood) is perfect love."

I was left absolutely destroyed by the end of the documentary. Tears, heartbreak, love.   

FInd out more about The Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East and read Canon Andrew White's blog here