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Syrian refugee children scream as they sit in front of Macedonian riot police at the Greek-Macedonian border (CNS)

Francis said he hopes the beatification of martyred Syriac Bishop Flavien-Michel Malke will give the persecuted faithful ‘courage and hope’

Archbishop Bashar Warda of Irbil, Iraq.

The archbishop says the crisis in Iraq has challenged his faith despite him encouraging Christians who flee to Irbil

The Monastery of Mar Elian before and after its destruction by ISIS fighters

The monastery of Mar Elian, destroyed by ISIS, was a beacon of inter-faith co-operation

Members of the Egyptian security services stand guard at the site of a July 16 bomb blast in Cairo (CNS)

Human rights groups have criticised the laws, which prescribe tough penalties against citizens judged to be supporting terrorism

The monastery was originally built in the fourth century

Islamists destroy 5th-century Mar Elian monastery

A bulldozer destroys Mar Elian monastery in Qaryatain (AINA.org)

Morning Catholic must-reads: 21/08/15

A daily guide to what’s happening in the Catholic Church

A Christian woman who fled from the violence in Mosul a year ago holds her daughter as her baby sleeps CNS

Six French dioceses will be joined by churches in Switzerland to highlight persecution

Men in traditional dress carry the East Timorese flag in the capital Dili (AP)

Morning Catholic must-reads: 14/08/15

A daily guide to what’s happening in the Catholic Church

Can the authorities tell the difference between real extremists and the religious? (PA)

Legislation to counter ‘extremism’ will threaten free speech for all faiths and give the state the final say on what we can, and cannot, teach our children

Assyrians citizens hold placards during a sit-in for abducted Christians in Syria and Iraq, at a church in Lebanon (PA)

The Syrian Observatory on Human Rights has reported a group of elderly Christians kidnapped by Islamists in February have been freed