Iraqi Anglican Cleric, Mosaic Middle East Partner, Honoured for Peacebuilding

Mosaic Middle East
Posted Mar 27, 2023

The Reverend Canon Faiz Jerjes receiving his MBE from Lord Ahmad, Minister of State for the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia and the United Nations (credit: British Embassy Baghdad)

PETERSFIELD, Hants.– The Rev. Canon Faiz Jerjes, vicar of St. George’s Anglican Church, Baghdad, and a vital partner to Mosaic Middle East, was honoured earlier this month as a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) in a ceremony at the British Embassy in the Iraqi capital.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, United Kingdom Minister of State for the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia and the United Nations, presented the MBE insignia in recognition of Jerjes’ contributions to peacebuilding and “for services to the Anglican, Christian and local community in Baghdad.” Initially approved by Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the presentation of the award was delayed for more than two years due to the global pandemic.

Lord Ahmad cited Jerjes’ efforts on behalf of not only Iraqi Christians but all faith groups in the nation, including the beleaguered Yazidi community.

Also in attendance were His Excellency Mr Mark Bryson-Richardson, British Ambassador to Iraq; His Excellency Archbishop Michael Lewis, Anglican Diocese of Cyprus and the Gulf; His Excellency Archbishop Mitja Leskovar, Apostolic Nuncio for the Holy See; Sheikh Ali al-Soudani, personal representative of the Grand Ayatollah Hussein al-Sadr; and the prominent tribal leader Sheikh Saddam al-Atwani.

Jerjes, the first and only Iraqi citizen ordained as an Anglican cleric, has long been an advocate for the rights of religious minorities and integral to inter-faith reconciliation and peacebuilding efforts. He was honoured by the Iraqi Ministry of Culture as one of Iraq’s Distinguished Personalities of the Year in 2017 for his support for human rights. A year later, the Iraqi Army recognised Jerjes for “his outstanding contributions to peaceful co-existence in Iraq.”

Jerjes has been associated with St. George’s since 2006 and served as the church’s curate prior to being named Priest-in-Charge in January 2015. With the support of both Mosaic Middle East and the Anglican Diocese of Cyprus and the Gulf, Jerjes and St. George’s supported scores of internally displaced families fleeing ISIS in 2015. In addition to the church, Jerjes oversees the Anglican School of the Redeemer, which opened in September 2018 and is located on the St. George’s campus, as well as a medical and dental clinic that provides free healthcare to people of all faiths.

Helen Jackson, executive director of Mosaic Middle East, said, “We are thrilled that Canon Jerjes’ tireless work on behalf of the people of Iraq has been recognised in this way. His leadership is characterised by powerful yet humble advocacy, and the whole Mosaic family is looking forward to continuing to work with him to bring hope and healing to many.”




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