Patriarchate News

On October 2nd 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II met His Majesty Carl XVI Gustav, King of Sweden and Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Victoria, on the sidelines of the Opening of the General Synod of the Church of Sweden.
During the meeting, His Holiness spoke with His Majesty and Her Royal Highness about the Syriac Orthodox Church and the presence of Syriac people in Sweden.
 

On October 2nd 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II met with their Graces Archbishops and Bishops members of the General Synod of the Church of Sweden.
Her Eminence Archbishop Antje Jackelén, Archbishop of Uppsala in Sweden and Primate of the Church of Sweden, was also present.
During the meeting, His Holiness spoke with them about the role and mission of the Church in Sweden bringing Christ to the people and people to Christ. He also spoke about the importance of collaboration between churches to reach this goal.
Their Eminences: Mor Julius Abdelahad Shabo, Metropolitan of Sweden and Scandinavia, Mor Dioscoros Benjamin Atas, Patriarchal Vicar in Sweden, Philoxenus Mattias Nayis, Patriarchal Vicar in Germany, and Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese in Damascus, as well as Very Rev. Raban Joseph Bali, Patriarchal Secretary and Media Office Director, and Very Rev. Aphrem Lahdo, Assistant of the Archbishop of Sweden and Scandinavia, were present.
 

On October 1st 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II presided over a meeting in Uppsala with representatives from the Syriac Orthodox Archdiocese of Sweden and Scandinavia and Patriarchal Vicarate in Sweden.
During the meeting, His Holiness discussed with the representatives different issues of interest for our Syriac people in Sweden. They also spoke about the role of our Churches in Sweden, that of Sankt Ignatius Theological Seminary, of the priests, and lay people. Moreover, they spoke about the integration of our Syriac people in the Swedish society.
 

On October 1st 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II was received by their Excellencies Imams Salahuddin Barakat, Tajeddin Farfour, and Mohammed Albagouri, in Stockholm – Sweden.

The meeting was attended by their Eminences: Mor Dioscorus Benjamin Atas, Patriarchal Vicar in Sweden, Mor Philoxenus Mattias Nayis, Patriarchal Vicar in Germany, 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.

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On October 1st 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II was received by the Metropolitans, Archbishops and Bishops from the Orthodox and Catholic Churches along with the Church of Sweden.
The meeting was hosted by Bishop Eva Brunne, Bishop of Stockholm for the Church of Sweden, at the Stockholm Cathedral. Their Graces Anba Abakir for the Coptic Orthodox Church, Metropolitan Cleopas for the Ecumenical Patriarchate, and Rev. Fr. Jean Mansour, for the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch, and the Chaldean Catholic Visitor were also present. His Grace Bishop Mikael Mogren, Bishop of Västerås also attended the meeting.
During the meeting, His Holiness spoke about the importance of working together for spreading the Gospel of Christ. He talked about the current situation in the Middle East, especially the persecution of Christians, and asked the help of the western Churches to relief those suffering brethren and to bring to light the truth of their suffering.
His Holiness was accompanied by their Eminences: Mor Julius Abdelahad Shabo, Metropolitan of Sweden and Scandinavia, Mor Dioscorus Benjamin Atas, Patriarchal Vicar in Sweden, Mor Philoxenus Mattias Nayis, Patriarchal Vicar in Germany, 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 Very Rev. Raban Aphram Lahdo, Assistant to the Archbishop of Sweden and Scandinavia.
 

His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II visited Mor Kyriakos Church in Vasteras – Sweden.

Their Eminences Archbishops Mor Julius Abdelahad Shabo, Metropolitan of Sweden and Scandinavia, Mor Dioscoros Benjamin Atas, Patriarchal Vicar in Sweden, Philoxenus Mattias Nayis, Patriarchal Vicar in Germany, and Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese in Damascus, were also present.

At the end of the prayer, His Holiness blessed the deacons all the faithful who participated in the prayer.

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On September 30th 3018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II held a prayer at the graveyard of Johannes Rudbeckius, in the presence of His Grace Bishop Mikael Mogren, Bishop of Västerås.

Then, His Holiness inaugurated an exhibition at the Cathedral of Västerås. He then attended a concert entitled “The Company of Heaven” at the Cathedral.

Their Eminences: Mor Julius Abdelahad Shabo, Archbishop of Sweden and Scandinavia, Mor Dioscorus Benjamin Atas, Patriarchal Vicar in Sweden, Mor Philoxenus Mattias Nayis, Patriarchal Vicar in Germany, and Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese of Damascus, were also present.

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On September 30th 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II attended an official reception prepared at the house of His Grace Bishop Mikael Mogren, Bishop of Västerås, by His Grace in honor of His Holiness.

The Syriac scouts received His Holiness at the house of His Grace with a performance of the band.

In his word, His Holiness thanked His Grace for the love and respect he showed him since his arrival to Sweden. His Holiness then spoke about the situation of Christians in the Middle East, especially in Syria.

Their Eminences: Mor Julius Abdelahad Shabo, Archbishop of Sweden and Scandinavia, Mor Dioscorus Benjamin Atas, Patriarchal Vicar in Sweden, Mor Philoxenus Mattias Nayis, Patriarchal Vicar in Germany, and Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese of Damascus, were also present, in addition to guests from local churches and from the Swedish society.

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On Sunday September 30th 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II attended the Divine Liturgy celebrated by Her Eminence Archbishop Antje Jackelén, Archbishop of Uppsala in Sweden and Primate of the Church of Sweden, at Uppsala Cathedral in Sweden.
During the service, His Holiness gave a sermon in which he commented on the Gospel according to Luke 10:17-20. He highlighted the fact that “The Lord is not denying the disciples the right to be satisfied and to rejoice; rather, He is warning them that happiness should be for the right reasons. He is making them aware that there is false happiness in the world, happiness that is built on pride, false power, and personal satisfaction; false happiness that comes as a result of worldly gains and not heavenly rewards”.
“True happiness which lasts” His Holiness illustrated “is what comes from the Lord Jesus, from our faith in Him and commitment to living His gospel.”
Noting the authority given to the disciples, His Holiness added “sending them on this mission, He gave them authority (cf. 10: 19). Their authority is an extension of His power; they could not do it on their own. In order to conquer the world and its lusts, and to win the battles against the evil one, they needed to have a greater authority than that of this world.”
Speaking about the mission of the Church, he said: “It is the mission of the Church today to bring back Christ to all the people of Sweden.”
“Christians, throughout the world but in the context of Sweden also, need to know that danger and rejection are to be expected. For the message of Christ presents a constant challenge to the worldly beliefs and convictions, because we are in the world but not of the world (cf. John 15: 19)”, His Holiness continued, “Therefore, pastors, clergy and indeed every Christian on a mission need to be watchful and prepared for refusal and denial. Nevertheless, the peace that comes from the Lord of peace and that comforts in times of difficulties is indescribable.”
At the end of his sermon, His Holiness prayed for the success of the General Synod of the Church of Sweden, remarking that “We are all more successful if we work together and collaborate, with the same zeal and enthusiasm that the disciples and apostles had when they shared the Gospel, preached it and taught the ‘new’ teaching of Jesus Christ, the teaching of the Kingdom of God”.
Their Eminences: Mor Julius Abdelahad Shabo, Archbishop of Sweden and Scandinavia, Mor Dioscorus Benjamin Atas, Patriarchal Vicar in Sweden, Mor Philoxenus Mattias Nayis, Patriarchal Vicar in Germany, Mor Polycarpus Augin Aydin, Patriarchal Vicar in Holland, and Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese of Damascus, also attended the service.
 

On September 29th 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II and Her Eminence Archbishop Antje Jackelén, Archbishop of Uppsala in Sweden and Primate of the Church of Sweden, presided over vespers at Uppsala Cathedral.
During the prayer, Her Eminence gave a sermon. At the end, His Holiness gave the final blessing.
Their Eminences: Patriarchal Vicar in Sweden, Mor Philoxenus Mattias Nayis, Patriarchal Vicar in Germany, Mor Polycarpus Augin Aydin, Patriarchal Vicar in Holland, and Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Vicar in the Patriarchal Archdiocese of Damascus, were present.