True: Many forget that the Middle East was indeed, particularly Egypt and Syria, the "cradle of Christianity" and played a major role in the articulation of Christian theology and the concept of monasticism. So what happened? Basically, what has been happening since day one when Islam burst onto the stage is still happening today: Christians are being persecuted to the point that they either emigrate, convert, or live in oppression. Hence why the Middle East "risks ending up without Christians."
"Vatican: Officials express 'concern' for Christians in Gaza," from Adnkronos, March 26:
Vatican City, 25 March (AKI) - The Vatican on Wednesday expressed "profound concern" about the position of Christians in the Middle East after the recent conflict in the Gaza Strip. In a statement, the Vatican said two of its senior officials, Cardinal Leonardo Sandri and Archbishop Antonio Maria Veglio sent a letter to bishops around the world, asking them to contribute to a collection for the Holy Land, which includes Israel and the Palestinian territories.
In the letter, the two officials expressed the church's "profound concern" for the position of Christians, particularly following the conflict in Gaza.
They also stressed how Pope Benedict XVI "constantly comforts Christians, and all the inhabitants of the Holy Land, with special words and gestures, coupled with his desire to make a pilgrimage in the historical footsteps of Jesus".
"The wounds opened by violence make the problem of emigration more acute, inexorably depriving the Christian minority of its best resources for the future," the letter said.
"The land that was the cradle of Christianity risks ending up without Christians"...