WASHINGTON – Omar al-Muqdad wanted to help the Iraqi refugees who were displaced from their homes in 2004. He volunteered to help with refugee resettlement, aiding those who came in finding housing, clothing and schools in Syria, where he lived.

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VATICAN CITY – The mother of American journalist James Foley, who was executed by the Islamic State group in Syria, has travelled to Rome to thank Pope Francis for the sympathy and support he gave her family after her son’s death.

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ROME, Italy – There are about three million people without heath care in war-torn Syria, and the papal envoy to the country has launched a project to help some of them.

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ALEPPO, Syria – Nearly three months after the Syrian Army liberated the city of Aleppo from ISIS control, the local population is facing harsh living conditions in a city left in ruins after nearly six years of fighting.

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Humanitarian aid workers in Syria and Lebanon are exhausted, said Hélène Tremblay-Boyko.

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AMMAN, Jordan – A famed Italian Catholic cathedral organist is believed to have been the first Western musician to perform in Syria since the start of the civil war nearly six years ago.

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WASHINGTON – Amid reports of an imminent executive order to halt most refugee resettlement in the U.S., one international Catholic charitable group is speaking out.

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OTTAWA – A ceasefire in war-torn Syria has not eased the humanitarian crisis, according to Catholic aid organizations in the region.

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ZAHLE, Lebanon – Balancing boxes and bags filled with warm clothes for his family, Malak Elias Mnayeri waited for a taxi in the near-freezing temperatures outside Caritas Lebanon's center in Zahle, close to the Syrian border.

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Before Christmas last year, Wartohi Myrdijian had to worry about the bombs falling on either side of her house in Aleppo. She was most afraid of the crude, unpredictable, improvised bombs that came from the ISIS side of the conflict.

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As the world focuses most of its attention on Syria, East Africa and its nine million refugees — 26 per cent of the world’s refugee population — is facing another wave of failed states, civil wars and ethnic cleansing.

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WASHINGTON – As Christians in the Middle East look back on 2016, they wonder if there will be much to celebrate amid mounting challenges, particularly for those displaced by conflicts in Iraq and Syria.

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VILLANOVA, Pa. – Consensus about the Middle East and its long-simmering tensions might seem hard to come by, but a dozen international scholars, government officials and leaders of nongovernmental organizations found a few points of agreement during a meeting at Villanova University.

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At the age of three, I was a refugee.

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DAMASCUS – Fr. Alejandro León is a Salesian missionary who has lived more than 13 years in the Middle East, and in Syria since 2011 – precisely when its civil war began. He has said that being there during the war is “ a sign of mercy and the love of God,” even though it involves risking his own life and often being close to death.

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