Patriarchate News

On January 20, 2019, upon the invitation of His Excellency General Michel Aoun, President of the Lebanese Republic, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II attended the opening session of The Fourth Arab Economic and Social Development Summit, hosted by the Republic of Lebanon, and held in Beirut.
 
The session was attended by official delegations representing twenty Arab countries, including Presidents, Ministers, and officials. Lebanese officials, as well as various religious leaders also attended the opening session.
 
His Excellency General Michel Aoun presided over the summit. In his opening speech, His Excellency spoke about the general situations in the Arabian countries, as well as the common challenges that face them. He also spoke about the economic and social development in these countries.
 

On January 19, 2019, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II celebrated Eastern Epiphany Holy Qurobo at Jordan River in Jordan.
 
It is the first time that the Syriac Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch and All the East celebrates Epiphany Holy Qurobo at the very place where our Lord Jesus Christ was baptized on the Jordan River.
 
His Holiness was assisted by His Eminence Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar for the Patriarchal Archdiocese of Damascus, in the presence of Very Rev. Raban Benjamin Chamoun, Parish Priest in Jordan, and the reverend priests, monks, deacons, and a large crowd of the Syriac Orthodox Church in Jordan.
 
His Eminence Mor Dionysios Issa Gurbuz, Patriarchal Vicar in Switzerland and Austria, Very Rev. Raban Gabriel Dahho, Patriarchal Vicar in Jerusalem and Jordan, as well as a crowd of the faithful of the Syriac Orthodox Church in the Holy Lands, also participated in the Holy Qurobo from the other side of the river.
 
During the Qurobo, His Holiness made the special rite and procession of Denho.
 
He then offered his greetings and blessings to all the faithful present, expressing his extreme joy to celebrate the Holy Qurobo at Jordan river, especially that it is the first time the Patriarch of Antioch and All the East celebrates the Qurobo there.
 
At the end, His Holiness visited the place where St. John the Baptist Syriac Orthodox Church at the Jordan River will be built in the near future.
 

After the Holy Qurobo, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II inaugurated St. Mark Social Center in Al Swaifyeh, Jordan.
 
First, His Holiness conducted a small prayer, then he took curtain off the inaugural plaque.
 
Their Eminences Mor Severius Hawa, Archbishop of Baghdad and Basra, Mor Athanasius Touma Dakama, Patriarchal Vicar in the United Kingdom, and Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese of Damascus, as well as representatives of the various churches in Jordan, and a large crowd of the Syriac Orthodox faithful, were also present.
At the end, His Holiness met the faithful at the large hall at the Center, and gave them his Apostolic benedictions.
 

On January 18, 2019, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II celebrated the Holy Qurobo at St. Ephrem Cathedral in Al Swaifyeh, Jordan.
 
He was assisted by their Eminences: Mor Athanasius Touma Dakama, Patriarchal Vicar in the United Kingdom, and Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese of Damascus, in the presence of His Eminence Mor Severius Hawa, Archbishop of Baghdad and Basra.
 
His Beatitude Fouad Twal, Emeritus Archbishop and Patriarch of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, as well as Archbishops and representatives of the various local churches in Jordan, attended the Holy Qurobo.
 
In his sermon, His Holiness thanked the Lord God Who gave him the opportunity to visit his spiritual children in Jordan, and witness their sincere faith and great love, which they inherited from their forefathers, who arrived to Jordan after the genocides. His Holiness praised the efforts of the parishioners in Jordan, who built for themselves a Cathedral and are now inaugurating St. Mark Center.
 
His Holiness prayed the Lord to keep them and provide them with health and success, and to bless Jordan, that it remains a country where citizens of all denominations can live with harmony.
 
His Holiness also welcomed His Beatitude Patriarch Twal, and all the archbishops and clergy present in the Church.
 
He also spoke about the baptism of our Lord Jesus Christ, emphasizing the fact that the Holy Trinity was revealed on the Jordan river as One True God. His Holiness also invited the faithful to recall their baptismal vows and be aware of the fact that their baptism is for salvation, not repentance as was John’s baptism. He considered that in baptism, we die with Christ to be risen with Him, and be reborn with a new nature similar to that of Adam before sin.
 

On January 18, 2019, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II was received at the Jordanian Borders, for the First Apostolic Visit to the Syriac Orthodox Church there.
 
Very Rev. Raban Benyamen Chamoun, Parish Priest in Jordan, as well as a number of officials, received His Holiness.
 
The delegation accompanying His Holiness consists of: His Eminence Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese of Damascus, Very Rev. Raban Joseph Bali, Patriarchal Secretary and Media Office Director, Very Rev. Raban Jack Yakoub, Director of the Suryoyo Patriarchal Youth Department, and Very Rev. Raban Barsoum Kindo.
 

On January 12, 2019, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II received a delegation of Zacharias Institute which is affiliated with the Barnabite fathers in Milan, Italy, at the Patriarchate Headquarters in Bab Touma, Damascus.
 
The delegation was led Rev. Fr. Ambrogio Valzasina from the Barnabite order, and the meeting was attended by His Eminence Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese of Damascus, Very Rev. Raban Joseph Bali, Patriarchal Secretary and Media Office Director, and Mr. Shadi Sarweh, Executive Director of St. Ephrem Patriarchal Development Committee (EPDC).
 
The delegation presented to His Holiness as a symbolic gift, the first model painting of the historical drawing of the Mother of Providence which is kept in Rome and dates back to the sixteenth century.
 
His Holiness spoke with his guests about the general situation in Syria. The institute will contribute to the various educational projects led by EPDC in Syria.
 

On January 11, 2019, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II received Rev. Fr. Tony Khadra, President of Labora, at the Patriarchal Residence in Atchaneh, Lebanon.

Rev. Fr. Khadra offered greetings to His Holiness on the occasion of Christmas and New year. They then spoke together about Labora and the support it gives to Christians in Lebanon by providing work and training.

Click to view slideshow.
 

On January 10, 2019, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II received His Eminence, the Most Reverend Silouan, Greek Orthodox Metropolitan of Byblos, Batroun and Dependencies, at the Patriarchal Residence in Atchaneh, Lebanon.
 
The meeting was attended by their Eminences: Mor Theophilus Georges Saliba, Archbishop of Mount Lebanon and Tripoli, Mor Clemis Daniel Kourieh, Metropolitan of Beirut, and Mor Chrysostomos Mikhael Chamoun, Patriarchal Vicar and Director of the Benevolent Patriarchal Institutions in Atchaneh.
 
His Eminence Silouan offered greetings to His Holiness on the occasion of Christmas and New Year. His Holiness also congratulated His Eminence for his new office as Metropolitan of Byblos and wished him successful ministry. They also discussed together general and common church matters.
 
Then, they visited St. Severus Church and made a tour in the Patriarchal Residence.
 

On January 9, 2019, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II received Their Excellencies: Dr. Nizar Yazigi, Syrian Health Minister, and Mr. Hussein Makhlouf, Syrian Local Administration and Environment Minister, at the Patriarchate Headquarters in Bab Touma, Damascus.
 
His Eminence Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese of Damascus, and Very Rev. Raban Joseph Bali, Patriarchal Secretary and Media Office Director, attended the meeting.
 
Their Excellencies offered to His Holiness warm greetings on the occasion of Christmas and New Year. His Holiness also discussed with his guests the general situations in Syria and the region.
 

On January 9, 2019, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II received His Excellency Mr. Javad Turk-Abadi, Ambassador of Iran to Damascus, at the Patriarchate Headquarters in Bab Touma, Damascus.
 
His Eminence Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese of Damascus, and Very Rev. Raban Joseph Bali, Patriarchal Secretary and Media Office Director, attended the meeting.
 
His Excellency offered to His Holiness warm greetings on the occasion of Christmas and New Year. His Holiness also discussed with his guest the current situations in Syria and the region. They assured the importance of peaceful coexistence, unity, and good human relations among the various components of the societies.
 
At the end, Holiness presented to His Excellency the Lord’s Prayer written in Syriac Language.