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Egypt's ambassador Lamia Aly Hamada Mekhemar presents her credentials to the Pope in 2008 (Photo: CNS)

Vatican foreign minister met the ambassador yesterday hours after she was called back to Cairo

Egyptian Muslims and Christians in Cairo protest against the bombing of a Coptic church in Alexandria (AP Photo/Ahmed Ali)

The Catholic Herald predicts the big stories of 2011

A Lebanese woman lights a candle at a vigil in Beirut following the massacre in Baghdad on Sunday (Photo: PA)

Or should they stay, with extra support from the west?

Mourners gather on the street as coffins arrive for a funeral Mass in Baghdad (Photo: PA)

Archbishop Vincent Nichols says his thoughts and prayers are with all those Iraqis struggling against violence and extremism

It is hard to fathom the brutality of Sunday’s church massacre

Men mourn outside outside Our Lady of Salvation, the Syrian Catholic cathedral in Baghdad (Photo: CNS)

Syrian Catholic patriarch, meanwhile, attacks indifference of free world to suffering of Iraqi Christians

Bishops at the closing Mass of the Synod at St Peter's Basilica (Photo: CNS)

Middle East bishops had a right to speak up for Palestinians at the Synod

Nuns and bystanders are seen outside Our Lady of Salvation church in Baghdad (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)

Dozens of Iraqi Catholics were killed yesterday after Islamic militants took worshippers hostage during Mass

Pope Benedict XVI shakes hands with Muhammad al-Sammak, adviser to the chief mufti of Lebanon (Photo: CNS)

Muslim scholars address Synod of Bishops

Islam promotes respect for Christians and Jews, Muslim scholars tell Synod

The tower of a church and the minaret of a nearby mosque are seen in the West Bank city of Ramallah (Photo: CNS)

The timing of the Middle East Synod is unfortunate