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September 21


Saint of the day:

Prophet Jonah (Iraq)

Prophet Jonah

“And the LORD appointed a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.” (Jonah 1:17) As soon as Jonah was hurled into the sea, “the sea ceased from its raging”. His solution had worked. But Jonah did not drown. God intervened again in a supernatural way: He appointed a great fish that swallowed Jonah. Three days and three nights he was in the belly of this fish, “in the heart of the seas”. There was no way out. But, as we read in the next chapter, after these three days, the fish vomited Jonah out upon the beach! Jesus Christ uses this miraculous story as a metaphor for his own death and resurrection. When Jesus was crucified, He was buried in a tomb “in the heart of the earth” (Matthew 12:40). Death had triumphed. There was no way out. But three days later, He rose again! The grave had to let Him go, He came back to life. Jonah’s story is a miracle, a sign that God is stronger than natural forces, stronger than the sea and the winds, stronger even than death. Jesus’ resurrection is God’s ultimate triumph. Death could not hold Him. Nothing can hinder Him from fulfilling His plans!







Prophet Yunus Mosque

 Mosul, Iraq

*In 2014 Isis destroyed this monument.

This site was listed as a world heritage site by Unesco as one of Iraq’s most renowned monuments, revered by all three of the abrahamic religions and was visited by Muslims, Christians and Jews.




Timman Bagilla


  • 500g/1 lb lamb neck fillet or boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 3cm/1 in cubes

  • 1 liter/1 quart chicken stock (made with 2 stock cubes)

  • 300g/1½ cups basmati rice

  • 250g/1½ cups frozen fava beans

  • 4 tbsp sunflower oil

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 40g/2 cups fresh dill, finely chopped

  • 2 tbsp dried dill

For the Cucumber, Dill & Yogurt Sauce

  • 1 cucumber, coarsely grated

  • 500g/2 cups plain full-fat yogurt

  • 1 tsp dried dill

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • salt and pepper


  1. Place the lamb and stock in a large pan and bring to a boil. Skim off the foam on the surface, reduce the heat to medium–low and gently simmer for 1 hour (or 1½ hours if you are using lamb shoulder), until cooked through.

  2. Rinse the rice and let soak for 30 minutes. Blanch the fava beans in a pot of boiling water for 2–3 minutes, drain and refresh under cold water. Remove the outer skins.

  3. When the lamb is cooked, strain and reserve the stock. Heat half of the oil in a heavy pan and cook the garlic until it just starts to color. Add the lamb and cook for 5–6 minutes until evenly browned, stirring all the time. Add the fava beans and half of the fresh and dried dill and cook for 2 minutes. Set aside and keep warm.

  4. In the same pan, heat the remaining oil over medium–low heat. Drain the rice and add to the pan, stirring until all the grains are coated with oil. Add 500ml/2 cups of the reserved stock, bring to a simmer, cover tightly, then turn the heat to the lowest setting and cook for 30 minutes.

  5. Meanwhile, make the yogurt sauce. Mix the grated cucumber and yogurt in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with the dried dill and drizzle with olive oil.

  6. When the rice is ready, stir it with a fork to fluff it. Add the rest of the fresh and dried dill, the reserved meat and fava beans and stir gently. Add a little of the reserved stock if you need extra moisture and cook over low heat for about 8 minutes. Serve immediately, with cucumber, dill and yogurt sauce.

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