Priest Says Christians Are The Salt Of Iraq – And Are Praying For God To Have Mercy On ISIS

Iraqi army tanks gather after the liberation of a village from Islamic State militants, south of Mosul.Reuters

An Iraqi priest has described Christians as the "salt" which his country needs.

Father Martin, who has family in America but has decided to remain in Iraq, spoke to CBN news. He said, "like a salt give a taste for the food... we can give a taste for this country." He's a Chaldean Catholic priest – one of the ancient denominations of the country.

Since the US-led invasion in 2003, the number of Christians in Iraq has plummeted. That situation has only worsened as believers have found themselves targeted by Islamic State, and caught in battles between the warring militia factions fighting for control.

"We're called to don't escape from the problem – to face the problem and solve it if it will take a long time," Father Martin said. "That's my principle and that's what Jesus told us. He changed the whole world from – from Jerusalem. So we can here make a change from Iraq to the whole world."

Father Martin also pointed out that Iraqi Christians are following Jesus' words and praying for those who've persecuted them. '"They are – every time they are praying – every time. They are also praying for ISIS to – to God have mercy on them, to make them a good people. They are praying for their – for their enemies."