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Praying for Afghanistan: 3 Modern-Day Heavenly Martyrs to Call Upon in This Crisis

Praying for Afghanistan: 3 Modern-Day Heavenly Martyrs to Call Upon in This Crisis

@mhunterkilmer, Instagram / ChurchPOP

Are you praying for Afghanistan? 🙏

The Taliban took control of Afghanistan on Sun., Aug. 15. This is a terrible tragedy, as residents are subject to horrible abuse, persecution, and death.

News broke on Thurs., Aug. 19 that the Taliban are “going door-to-door seeking Christians” and “searching through phones for Bible apps.” Reports say the Taliban will kill someone “immediately” after finding the Bible on a phone.

Catholic speaker and author Megan Hunter-Kilmer posted three great intercessors to call upon during this crisis in Afghanistan. 

“I don’t know what should have happened in Afghanistan. I don’t know what should be happening now. I don’t know how to help. But I know how to pray,” Kilmer wrote on Instagram.

“I know there are saints who have experienced this kind of terror, the agony of a destabilized region, some who even experienced retaliatory violence as a result of U.S. military intervention.”

Kilmer then explains the backgrounds of three modern-day martyrs to call upon.

“Through their intercession, may the people of Afghanistan be protected,” she wrote.

Servant of God Ragheed Aziz Ganni (1972-2007)

@mhunterkilmer, Instagram

Servant of God Ragheed Aziz Ganni “was a young Chaldean Catholic priest who had returned to Iraq from studies in Rome shortly after Saddam Hussein’s removal,” Kilmer explained. “Fr. Ragheed had voiced his opposition to the U.S. invasion of Iraq, fearing the repercussions it would have on Iraqi Christians.

“He was right. In the 4 years he spent as a parish priest in Mosul, Fr. Ragheed’s sister was wounded when a grenade was thrown into a church, a car bomb after Mass killed two Christians, and the bishop’s residence was bombed”

“Fr. Ragheed’s own parish was attacked at least 10 times, all culminating in a final attack when armed men ambushed and killed Fr. Ragheed along with Servants of God Basman Yousef Daud, and Wahid Hanna Isho and Gassan Isam.”

Servant of God Ragheed Aziz Ganni, please pray for Afghanistan!

Bl. Paul Thoj Xyooj (1941-1960)

@mhunterkilmer, Instagram

“Bl. Paul Thoj Xyooj (pronounced Tao Shiong) was a Hmong catechist living in Laos during the Laotian Civil War, in which the United States covertly supported the Royal government against communist forces,” Kilmer wrote in the second portion of her post.

“When Xyooj and Bl. Mario Borzaga (an Italian priest) were traveling, Xyooj warned Fr. Borzaga of the guerillas’ presence, but Fr. Borzaga insisted they would be safe since he wasn’t American,” Kilmer continued.

“But he looked like one (and Xyooj was clearly Hmong, a people who were working with the U.S. military) and they were captured. Though Xyooj was offered his freedom, he chose to remain with Fr. Borzaga and they were martyred together.”


Bl. Paul Thoj Xyooj, please pray for Afghanistan! 

Servant of God Marcel Nguyễn Tân Văn (1928-1959)

@mhunterkilmer, Instagram

Servant of God Marcel Nguyễn Tân Văn “was a gentle young Vietnamese religious who died in a communist prison camp.

“In 1954, North Vietnam was taken over by communists; Br. Marcel begged his superiors to let him stay, so that there would be someone who loved God living among the communists.

“He stayed, but was soon arrested and imprisoned. He died in solitary confinement.”

Servant of God Marcel Nguyễn Tân Văn, please pray for Afghanistan! 

All you holy men and women of God, please pray for Afghanistan! 🙏

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