On last August 15th, a solidarity-based pharmacy for destitute Christians was inaugurated in Baghdad. This is the first project of Fraternity in Iraq in Baghdad.
A few months ago, a small room was turned into a solidarity-based pharmacy within the presbytery of the Holy Family parish in Baghdad by Abouna Ghassan, the parish priest. While he had already set up home, the 30-year old man was called to the priesthood by his bishop, as it is doable in the Chaldean (Catholic) Church. He responded in this regard and settled with his wife Nassira and their two daughters in this parish of downtown Baghdad. He is henceforth committed lavishly for his parishioners.
His work schedule is now quite different from the ones he had when he was working in an embassy or running a hardware store, but there is little doubt that this keen man – he especially collects old books and stamps – has found a mission that inspires himself in his priest’s vocation.
From now on, he seeks to « help a maximum number of families to live with dignity ». Indeed, he considers that his mission, even if spiritual first, is also to support and help his parishioners in their daily lives, especially the poorest ones.
Opposite, Abouna Ghassan in front of the door of the new solidarity-based pharmacy located in the Holy Family parish in downtown Baghdad
That’s why he asked Fraternity in Iraq to bankroll the pharmacy set up within the parish and dedicated to provide families in need with drugs, milk powder, diapers, etc.. A first visit of a team made up of volunteers last December helped to initiate this project of solidarity-based pharmacy. The association has funded the equipment of the pharmacy as well as about 1-year supply of drugs. Besides, a team that went to Baghdad in August could witness the significance of this project for poor families in the area.
Above, volunteers of Fraternity in Iraq, visiting just before the inauguration.
For now, two young parishioners are supporting Abouna Ghassan to run the pharmacy, but he will soon leave the management to a manager under recruitment. He does not intend to stop off and is already looking for a more sustainable model, with perhaps the modest support of beneficiaries to buy other drugs, and even considering the possibility of a mid-term expansion.
While the families of the neighborhood are getting excited about to the opening of the pharmacy, Fraternity in Iraq is delighted to support this first project for the Christians of Baghdad!