Kfifan, Lebanon. Every year the monastery of Saint Cyprian and Justina receives hundreds of young seminarists from all over the world. September 2011. © Linda Dorigo
Saint Taddeus monastery, Iran. The yearly Armenian pilgrimage. July 2011. © Linda Dorigo
Gharduka, Rojava, Syrian Kurdistan. Gharduka is on the frontline between Kurds and Isis. The village is empty and its only church has been destroyed by the jihadists who bombed it after using it as a trench. January 2014. © Linda Dorigo
Ain Ebel, Lebanon. The Easter mass. The village is close to the border with Israel and many U.N. soldiers attend the mass. April 2012. © Linda Dorigo
Jerusalem. The guardian of an Ethiopian church showing an ancient copy of the Bible. The Christian community includes Catholics, Ortodoxes, Egyptian and Ethiopian Copts between Damascus gate and Jaffa gate. December 2012. © Linda Dorigo
Deir Abu Hennis, Egypt. An Orthodox wedding. The Catholic community of the village is a minority, but the relationships between the two denominations are good. During festivities, representatives of each denomination pay tribute to others. July 2012. © Linda Dorigo
Bethlehem, West Bank. The Catholic Christmas festivity inside the Nativity church. The space inside the church where Jesus was born is assigned to different Christian creeds. Christmas is celebrated four times in Holy Land. December 2012. © Linda Dorigo
Karia Rounta, Iraqi Kurdistan. Wedding celebration. October 2012. © Linda Dorigo
Saint Taddeus Monastery, Iran. The Black Church is open all night long during the pilgrimage. July 2011. © Linda Dorigo
Deir Abu Hennis, Egypt. Dancing in front of the bride's house. August 2011. © Linda Dorigo
Ani, Turkey. Ani is the ancient capital of the Armenian empire, situated at the closed border between Armenia and Turkey. Nowadays Ani is a stack of churches' ruins, homes and the Cathedral. August 2013. © Linda Dorigo
Qaraqosh, Iraq. Celebration of the martyrdom of Mar Shimun, one of the first Christian martyrs, killed with her seven children because she refused to convert to Islam. November 2012. © Linda Dorigo
Marmara sea, Turkey. Many islands of the Marmara sea were inhabited by Greeks. President Atatürk ordered a population exchange between Turks and foreigners and the Greeks left their lands. August 2013. © Linda Dorigo
Linda Dorigo is a photojournalist living between Italy and the Middle East, where she works for international newspapers and magazines. Rifugio is her long-term project developed with Italian journalist and blogger Andrea Milluzzi.
The life of Christians in the Middle East has worsened dramatically over the past 50 years.
In the land where Christianism first originated and developed, the followers of Jesus are now a minority – they currently account for a mere 5% of the entire population of the area. Both ethno-religious divisions and radical Islamism have tragically boosted the diaspora of Christians, forcing them to scatter on every continent.
Starting from Trieste, Linda Dorigo and Andrea Milluzzi have travelled through Iran, Lebanon, Egypt, Israel, the Palestinian Territories, Jordan, Turkey and Syria for 2 years – looking for those who, in different circumstances and places, refuse to leave their home even at the cost of their own lives.
Captured in a contrasted black and white, and intertwined with the chronicle of the journey, Rifugio recounts both the public and intimate stories of individuals, families and communities forced to struggle with their identity.