Durstyne Farnan is Director of Vocations for the Dominican Sisters of Adrian, Michigan, and Iraq Coordinating Committee of the U.S. Domincan Order.
"When we left everything in Qaraqosh, maybe we accumulated a lot of things in our houses that we didn't need. We left our Christian pictures in Qaraqosh, but since August 6, 2014, I have changed my views on things. I discovered people don't need things to be happy."
In 1998 Fr. Timothy Radcliffe was Master of the Dominican Order and the people of Iraq were experiencing the burden of U.S. sanctions. Radcliffe, informing us we had “family” in Iraq, asked how we might be sister and brother to our family in the Middle East. It had never dawned on me that there were Dominicans in Iraq. We have discovered and are discovering that relationships call us out of ourselves and into the lives of one another on a profoundly personal and enriching basis. Our sisterhood connects us and provides the courage to strengthen the bonds of friendship and love that will last our lifetimes.
Almost a year ago, three U.S. Dominican Sisters journeyed to Iraq to visit the Iraqi Dominican community and the Iraqi people displaced by war and terrorism. Here are some of their thoughts before they set out.