Vicar of Baghdad to tell of ordeals

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A VICAR who oversees the last remaining Anglican Church in Iraq will visit York next week to speak of his work to resolve conflict in the Middle East.

Canon Andrew White, vicar of St George’s Church in Baghdad, has been kidnapped and held at gunpoint and seen up to 11 staff killed in just 12 months. He was forced to flee to Britain in 2007 following threats to his own life, but has since returned to Iraq.

Canon White, who has been nicknamed the Vicar of Baghdad, will be speaking on Monday at St Michael le Belfrey Church from 12.30pm to 1.15pm and then at Archbishop Holgate’s School from 7.30pm to 9pm. He has been invited to speak by One Voice York and Churches Together in York.

One Voice York’s chairman, Graham Hutchinson, said: “Andrew has an extraordinary ministry of reconciliation and conflict mediation in the Middle East, and we’re delighted that he’s coming to speak in York.”

Canon White previously worked in Israel and Palestine and negotiated the end of the Bethlehem siege in 2002. He is now involved in maintaining communications between Shia and Sunni leaders, and gaining the trust of key religious leaders.