August 1999


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Synodal Session Held at Damascus

August 13, 1999

DAMASCUS. On Friday, August 13, 1999, His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Zakka I Iwas, convened a Synodal Session which took place at St. Ephrem's Monastery in Maarat Saydnaya. The session was presided over by H.H the Patriarch and attended by H.E. Mor Athanasius Afram of Beirut, Mor Gregorious Yuhanna Ibrahim of Aleppo, Mor Theophilos George Saliba of Mount Lebanon, Mor Ostatheos Matta Rohom of the Jazireh and the Euphrates, and Mor Ivanios Boulos Assouqi of Damascus. The following topics were discussed.

  1. The Symposium on Michael the Great to be held on 1-8 October 1999. H.E. Mor Gregorious Yuhanna Ibrahim will organize the program.
  2. The letters between H.H. the Patriarch and H.H. Mor Mousa I of the Syrian Catholic Church were read concerning a dialogue between the two sister churches. The Session appointed H.E. Mor Athanasius Afram, Mor Gregorios Yuhanna Ibrahim and Mor Severious Ishak Saka to represent our church in the dialogue.
  3. The Patriarch shared with the bishops the letters which all the other bishops sent concerning the resignation of Mor Athanasius Afram from administrating Zahleh, Lebanon, and establishing Zahleh as a new diocese.
  4. The Patriarch discussed with the bishops the case of the Homs archdiocese, whose former archbishop has retired because of age. Fr. Elisha Nima will be deputed along with another monk to ensure that proper election for a new bishop takes place.
  5. Their Eminences Mor Gregorious Yuhanna Ibrahim and Mor Theophilos George Saliba submitted a report regarding the meeting of the Middle East Council of Churches of 3 August 1999.
  6. It was decided that the year 2000 will be the commemoration of the 1500th memorial of Empress Theodora and Mor Jacob Bu`ordono. H.H. the Patriarch will issue a patriarchal bull in this regard.
  7. The Patriarch will send a letter of apostolic benediction to Taw Mim Simkath (jam`iyyat al-taraqqi al-suryaniyyah, the orphanage and school association) on the occasion of its 100 year anniversary.
  8. The Patriarch invited the bishops for the consecration of the Church of Sts. Peter and Paul in Maarat Saydnaya.
  9. The Patriarch and the bishops studied the reports concerning the evangelical center in Brazil, and decided to table the discussion until the next Holy Synod.
  10. The next Holy Synod will be held in Maarat Saydnaya on 16-22 May 2000.

Source: H.E. Archbishop Mor Clemis E. Kaplan

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