Patriarchate News

On July 18th 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II offered his condolences to His Brother in Christ His Beatitude and Eminence Cardinal Mar Bechara Boutros Al-Rai, Maronite Patriach of Antioch and All the East, on the passing away of his sister Mrs. Farha Al-Rai, at the Patriarchate Headquarters in Bkerki.

He was accompanied by their Eminences Mor Theophilos George Saliba, Archbishop of Mount Lebanon and Tripoli, Mor Dioscoros Kuriakose, Metropolitan of the Simahasana Churches in the North of Kerala and Abbot of Malecuriz Dayro, Mor Athanasius Elia Bahi, Patriarchal Vicar of Canada, Very Rev. Raban Joseph Bali, Patriarchal Secretary and Media Office Director, and Very Rev. Raban Cyril Babi, Director of the Department of Legal Affairs and Spiritual Courts.

His Excellency Archbishop Paul Sayyah, Vicar General of the Maronite Church, was present
His Holiness, His Beatitude, and their Eminences and Excellency raised special prayer that her soul may rest in peace.

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On July 11th 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II received a delegation from the Syrian Social Nationalist Party headed by Mr. Antoine Isper, Head of the Political Office in Damascus, and Mr. Asaad Al-Amiri, Central Iraqi Delegate, at the Patriarchate Headquarters in Bab Touma – Damascus.
During their meeting, His Holiness and his guests discussed the recent issues in Syria, Iraq, and the region.
Very Rev. Raban Joseph Bali, Patriarchal Secretary and Media Office Director, attended the meeting.
 

On July 10th 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II received at the Patriarchate in Bab Touma, His Excellency Mr. Achilles Zaluar, Ambassador of Brazil to Damascus, at the end of his diplomatic mission in Syria.
His Excellency thanked His Holiness for his warm reception and recalled the good and steadfast ties between Brazil and the Syriac Orthodox Church.
His Holiness Patriarch Aphrem II appreciated the important role of His Excellency in promoting peace in Syria. His Holiness also wished His Excellency all success in his new mission.
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 also attended the meeting.
His Excellency was accompanied by Dr. Rafli Kardous.
 

After the Prayer Meeting in Bari, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II, as well as all their Holinesses and Beatitudes, moved back to the Basilica of St. Nicholas, where they held a closed meeting concerning the situations in the Middle East.
During their meeting, their Holinesses and Beatitudes discussed ways and means to ensure safe stay for Christians in the Middle East, and emphasized the importance of reaching peaceful solutions for the different crises in the region and all over the world.
In his word, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II noted that he fails to understand the position of the west in general, but also many churches in the west, concerning the presence and suffering of Christians in the Middle East. He assured that the church is not with or against governments, but is always with the country and the people, and works for justice. His Holiness considered that actions should be taken towards raising the sanctions that are imposed on Syria, because they are not against the government but against people who are suffering in their movement, food and medicine, etc. Moreover, He wished that Christian solidarity will be realized actually, and that support and help for Christians will be provided equally to all Christians without discrimination based on denomination.
 

On July 7th 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II participated in the Prayer Meeting hosted by His Holiness Pope Francis in the city of Bari – Italy, along with the Heads of Middle Eastern Churches.
Their Holinesses and Beatitudes Patriarchs of the Orthodox and Catholic Churches of Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem, also participated in the prayer.
His Holiness Pope Francis greeted their Holinesses and Beatitudes outside the Basilica of St. Nicholas and together they descended to the crypt to pray before the relics and light a flame for peace symbolizing the unity of Christians. They then moved to the Esplanade where a place was prepared for the prayer to take place.
In his Introductory Address at the Prayer Meeting, His Holiness Pope Francis considered that “we are carrying in our hearts our Churches, our peoples and all those living in situations of great suffering. We are saying to them, ‘We are close to you’”. He considered that from the Middle East “the light of faith spread throughout the world.” He noted that “There is also the danger that the presence of our brothers and sisters in the faith will disappear, disfiguring the very face of the region. For a Middle East without Christians would not be the Middle East.”
His Holiness Pope Francis concluded: “Indifference kills; and we desire to lift up our voices in opposition to this murderous indifference. We want to give a voice to those who have none, to those who can only wipe away their tears. For the Middle East today is weeping, suffering and silent as others trample upon those lands in search of power or riches.”
After that, the Prayer Meeting was held. All heads of Churches gathering in Bari raised the prayer together for peace. His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II prayed in Syriac and English the following prayer:
“Blessed be Jesus Christ, our Lord, the Only–Begotten of the Father, announced by the prophets as Prince of Peace, born of a woman in Bethlehem of Judea: by his blood he reconciled Abel and Cain, he knocked down the dividing wall and he made the two peoples one; risen from the dead, as his first gift to his disciples, he gave peace. The same peace we ask for his two servants the kidnapped archbishops of Aleppo Boulos Yaziji and Mor Gregorius Youhanna Ibrahim together with the kidnapped priests that they may return to us safe.”
At the end of the prayer, their Holinesses and Beatitudes lit candles for peace.
His Holiness our Patriarch was accompanied by 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.
 

On July 5th 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II participated in a meeting hosted by His Beatitude and Eminence Cardinal Mar Bechara Boutros Al Rai, Maronite Patriarch of Antioch and all the East, at the Maronite Patriarchate headquarters in Bkerki.
The meeting was also attended by His Holiness Catholicos Aram I of the Great House of Cilicia for the Armenian Orthodox Church, and His Beatitude Mor Ignatius Joseph III Younan, Syriac Catholic Patriarch of Antioch.
The meeting aimed at discussing the situation of the Holy Church and the presence of Christians in the Middle East, in preparation for Bari meeting hosted by His Holiness Pope Francis on the 7th of July.
His Holiness our Patiarch was accompanied by Very Rev. Raban Joseph Bali, Patriarchal Secretary and Media Office Director.
 

On July 4th 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II received an official delegation from the Church of Greece at the Patriarchal Residence in Atchaneh, Lebanon.

The delegation included His Grace Bishop Ioannis of Thermopilo, titular Metropolitan of the Church of Greece and Abbot of the Monastery of the Assumption of the Mother of God in Pentelis, and Prof. Christos Voulgaris.

The delegation are on a private visit to His Holiness on behalf of His Beatitude Archbishop Ieronymos II of Athens.

During the meeting, the delegation invited His Holiness on behalf of His Beatitude for an official visit to the Church of Greece.

Their Eminences Mor Clemis Daniel Kourieh, Metropolitan of Beirut, and Mor Timotheos Matthew, Patriarchal Secretary for Indian Affairs, as well as Very Rev. Raban Joseph Bali, Patriarchal Secretary and Media Office Director, attended the meeting.

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Ajith Kumar Photography

On June 30th 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II attended an official reception at St Peter Church in Perth – Australia on the occasion of its consecration and inauguration.

The reception was attended by His Beatitude Catholicos Mor Baselius Thomas I, Catholicos of India, and their Eminences: Mor Malatius Malki Malki, Patriarchal Vicar in Australia and New Zealand, Mor Milithios Yuhanon, Metropolitan of Thumpamon Diocese and Patriarchal Vicar in Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, Mor Athanasios Geevarghese, Metropolitan of the Simhasana Churches in Southern Kerala and Abbot of Manjinikkara Dayro, Mor Theethose Yeldo, Archbishop of the Malankara Archdiocese in North America, Mor Iraneous Paulose, Metropolitan of Kozhikkod and Patriarchal Vicar in Oman, and Mor Timotheos Matthew, Patriarchal Secretary for Indian Affairs.
His Excellency Hon. Kim Beazley, Governor of Western Australia, Hon Kate Doust, President of the Legislative Council in Western Australia, and Mr. Amit Kumar Mishra, Consul General of India in Western Australia, as well as many dignitaries, engineers and friends of the church who contributed to its edification.
In his speech, His Holiness showed the important role of the Syriac church and its mission wherever the faithful gather to praise the Lord. He also emphasized the need to hold firm to our faith and traditions that we have received from our forefathers.
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On June 30, 2018, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II celebrated the Holy Qurobo at St. Peter Church in Perth – Australia.

His Holiness was assisted by their Eminences: Mor Malatius Malki Malki, Patriarchal Vicar in Australia and New Zealand, Mor Milithios Yuhanon, Metropolitan of Thumpamon Diocese and Patriarchal Vicar in Australia, New Zealand and Singapore. The Holy Qurobo was attended by His Beatitude Catholicos Mor Baselius Thomas I, and their Eminences: Mor Athanasios Geevarghese, Metropolitan of the Simhasana Churches in Southern Kerala and Abbot of Manjinikkara Dayro, Mor Theethose Yeldo, Archbishop of the Malankara Archdiocese in North America, Mor Iraneous Paulose, Metropolitan of Kozhikkod and Patriarchal Vicar in Oman, and Mor Timotheos Matthew, Patriarchal Secretary for Indian Affairs.

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On June 29, 2018, which is the Feast of St. Peter and St. Paul, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II consecrated St. Peter Church in Perth – Australia.
His Holiness was assisted by His Beatitude Catholicos Mor Baselius Thomas I, and their Eminences: Mor Malatius Malki Malki, Patriarchal Vicar in Australia and New Zealand, Mor Milithios Yuhanon, Metropolitan of Thumpamon Diocese and Patriarchal Vicar in Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, Mor Athanasios Geevarghese, Metropolitan of the Simhasana Churches in Southern Kerala and Abbot of Manjinikkara Dayro, Mor Theethose Yeldo, Archbishop of the Malankara Archdiocese in North America, Mor Iraneous Paulose, Metropolitan of Kozhikkod and Patriarchal Vicar in Oman, and Mor Timotheos Matthew, Patriarchal Secretary for Indian Affairs.
At the end of the rite of the Consecration, His Holiness congratulated the community and spoke about the very essence of Christianity, which is serving people and Christ Himself, especially in the churches built for His praise and the benefit of His people.

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