The pastor of Iraq’s only Christian radio station has narrowly survived a bomb blast in Baghdad.
Pastor Maher Fouad escaped unhurt when the bomb exploded last Tuesday at a garage.
Pastor Maher, who was enquiring about repairs to a church bus, drove away moments before the explosion, which killed the garage owner and destroyed another car.
Although the windows of his bus were shattered by the explosion, Pastor Maher was not hurt and “praised the Lord for God’s protection,” a statement on his church’s website said.
Pastor Maher leads a Christian radio station which broadcasts to up to 8 million people in and around Baghdad. Despite countless death threats, he has no intention of leaving, he told CBN recently.
“The situation here in Baghdad is not only bad, it is very bad,” Pastor Maher said. “When ISIS occupied Ramadi, we became in danger because Ramadi is not very far away from Baghdad. On one side, we have ISIS threatening us. And the second danger we face is from car bombs and explosions.”
He founded 102.9 FM a decade ago. “When we started this project, it was a pioneering project,” he said. “No one ever applied for a radio station in the history of Iraq, especially a Christian radio station.”
Iraq’s Christian population has fallen from 6.5 per cent in 2003 to 0.8 per cent today according to the CIA Factbook.
In spite of this, “I pray publicly on our radio station so all the Iraqis will hear it.” Pastor Maher said. “Not only Christians but also Muslims call us live on the air requesting that we pray for them.”