Iraqi Christians hope for miracle from Pope Francis’s visit

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From the northern plains of Nineveh to Iraq’s southern cities, roads and homes are being decorated, church floors scrubbed squeaky clean and blast walls painted in bright hues to welcome the Pope on Friday.

Amid warnings that a papal visit is the last chance to save them, Iraq’s rapidly dwindling Christian community has worked hard to prepare for Francis’s arrival, hoping that he can end their persecution.