Showing posts with label Eastern Catholics. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Eastern Catholics. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Kiev Catholic Archbishop: Melt Down Weapons For Bells

"I have asked the Lord to melt down all tanks and guns, which are now killing the Ukrainians, and make them into church bells."

Kiev ( The head of the Greek Catholic Church of Ukraine united to Rome, Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk, calls for the destruction of weapons in Ukraine. "I have asked the Lord to melt down all tanks and guns, now killing the Ukrainians, and make them into church bells," Shevchuk said, according to the Ukrainian press service RISU (Monday) at the consecration of a church bell in Hungary. This should follow the Hungarian model, to be made of cannons, a "peace bell" Ukraine.

The Kiev bishop presented such a bell on the border with Ukraine in the Hungarian city of Mariapocs at a service of the Greek Catholic Sanctuary. It should ring peace in Europe and Ukraine, he said. In the First and Second World War, tens of thousands of Church bells had been melted down to make them into weapons. (C) 2015 Catholic News Agency KNA GmbH. All rights reserved. Link to Trans: Tancred AMDG

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Archbishop Hlib Installed as Exarch of the United Kingdom

[The Eponymous Flower, London] As reported by the Society of St. John Chrysostom, Archbishop Kyr Hlib Boris Sviatoslav Lonchyna was named as the Fifth Exarch for Ukrainian Catholics in Great Britain in June.  While on August 3rd, this last Tuesday with His Beatitude Major Archbishop Sviatoslav, he was installed. The ceremony took place at the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral of the Holy Family in Exile, London. 

Also present was the Papal Nuncio, Archbishop Antonio Meninni was present. The Archbishop has a long-standing history of engaging Orthodox and Eastern Rite Catholics.

Even the Archbishop's mother was able to make the journey at the age of 85.

Photos and reportage courtesy of, RACH.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Cardinal Brings Iraqi Catholic Family into Archepiscopal Palace

Edit: Charity begins at home.

The family belonged to some 31 Iraqi Christians who were taken in by the Austrian government.

 Vienna ( "A warm welcome in this house, a warm welcome to our Land, Austria":  Cardinal Christoph Schönborn greeted an Iraqi refugee family to the Archbishop's Palace.

The family belongs to some 31 Iraqi Christians, who have been taken in by the Austrian government. They have received a positive asylum determination and have received recognized refugee status.

The Chaldean-Catholic family from Kirkuk, which will reside in the Archepiscopal Palace had been acutely threatened in Iraq, explained the Viennese Archbishop in "Kathpress".  He condemned in any avent the attack against the Church in Baghdad a few months ago in which more than 60 Mass goers lost their lives. It was therefore just and necessary that the government's decision was made to take in the Iraqi refugees.

Schönborn said:  "For years the government has essayed to be active in this direction.  Till then I have kept my ears to the ground and listened intentively.  Now things have finally come to pass and for that I'm very thankful."

The Church has always insisted upon assisting the refugees with their plight.  The Cardinal stressed that the families were encouraged in this to live in Austria and even learn German, so that they at least soon land on their own feet.

Read further..

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Patriarch Lubomyr Husar on his possible successor

Джерело публікації:

 [Religious Information Service of Ukraine] "My peers are pensioners. To transfer patriarchal power to any of them would be futile. Our church has a synodal structure that must search not for a person with extraordinary talents but for the leader of this community. The archbishop, father, and head of our church is the head of the synod. In our tradition, especially in the restored tradition, the synod is the governing body that sets the tone of the church’s life. I am sure that our bishops will look for a man who will plan for the future, who will continue the work that has already begun, because through the synod, we all take part in the life of our church," Patriarch Lubomyr Husar said in an interview on Thursday.

Read further...

Джерело публікації:

Monday, December 13, 2010

Ancient Catholic Monastery Uncovered in United Arab Emirates

The unexpected find provides the emirate another tourist attraction to add to resorts and museums
United Arab Emirates

The remains of a monastery and church opened this week to the public in Abu Dhabi, offering tourists and locals a rare glimpse into the Islamic emirate’s often-forgotten Christian past.
The site contains the remains of a an Eastern Syrian church and monastery that was erected around the year 600, and was in use for about 150 years, Peter Hellyer, the project director for the Sir Bani Yas Monastery Project, told The Media Line. Located on Sir Bani Yas, a small deserted island off the coast of Abu Dhabi, the site shows the first physical evidence of a Christian presence in the southern gulf. 

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Archeologists Discover Possible Monastery in Jericho, Palestine

Moscow, November 10, Interfax – Russian archeologists have conducted the first excavations in the Holy Land since Russian research of Christian antiquaries in Palestine stopped in 1917.

"Here we have discovered a complex of Byzantium buildings that dates back to 6-7 centuries. Perhaps, it is remains of a monastery with multicolored mosaics," director of the Archeology Institute and corresponding member of the Russian Academy of Sciences Nikolay Makarov said at a press conference on Wednesday.

Excavations in Jericho were organized by the Russian Presidential Administration in connection with building Russian museum and park complex and yard facelift.

As Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia had earlier said, Russian Cultural Center in Jericho will become "the first major project in the Holy Land in the third millennium that was actively taken up by the Russian state." The center will be completed in the nearest future.

Read further, Interfax-Religion...

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Protestant Studies Fathers and Becomes Byzantine Catholic

We found this article at Medjugorje Central at Spirit Daily.

Sees Byzantine church a “perfect marriage” of Eastern traditions and unity with pope


A former Lutheran pastor from Northern Michigan now heads St. Nicholas of Myra Byzantine Catholic Church in Anchorage.

On Oct. 31, Father James Barrand, 52, succeeded just-retired pastor Father Mike Hornick at the little, dome-topped church, where an ancient Catholic liturgy is celebrated everyday. Father Barrand is quick to explain that he got to the icon and incense-filled church with the help of ancient guides — the Early Church Fathers — who chanted the same Divine Praises in the first centuries of the church as he does now.


While a Protestant seminarian, Father Barrand had been fascinated by the Catholic Church.

“I had been exploring it all the way through seminary,” he told the Anchor.

Father James Barrand celebrates the Divine Liturgy at St. Nicholas of Myra Byzantine Catholic Church in Anchorage on Dec. 30. At right, Father Barrand stands along side the screen of icons, in front of the sanctuary of the church. His concentration was the study of the Fathers of the Church, the influential theologians and writers of the first centuries after Jesus Christ. They include St. Augustine, St. Ignatius of Antioch and St. John Chrysostom.

As with many Protestant denominations, Father Barrand explained, Lutherans think they must “restore” the church to “its pristine shape before the corruption – as they saw it – of the Middle Ages. So they very much encourage people to go back to the Fathers. So I did.”

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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Disappearing Eastern Catholicism: Middle East Synod 2010

Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Benedict XVI has called synod of the churches in the Middle East for an October 2010. Preparation for this event requires understanding of the situation that surrounds this part of the world and the difficult problems that the churches there are suffering.

First there is widespread conflict. There is one that has lasted for decades, between Israel and Palestine, and associated with it, other situations of war that have arisen in other countries.

Then there is the political changes that have taken place in Iran since '79, which brought to the fore the Shiite movement. In many countries where it exists, it is becoming its self-awareness is growing, although this often takes on the form of confrontation.

A third factor is the rise of Islamic terrorism in the countries of the Middle East which is spreading throughout the world. Added to this the war in Iraq and its consequences. All of these political situations are somehow inter-connected.

Another important dimension is the growth of the Islamic fundamentalist movement. This has changed the very social structure of the region which has for decades seen the insistence of Islamic discourse in the media; schools are permeated with the teachings Islam, especially fundamentalist Islam; on the streets religious adverts are an increasing; the traditional external or extremist signs of this trend. In some countries the growth of fundamentalism has encouraged the adoption of sharia, or part of sharia. This has a strong influence on the lives of Christians, because they are forced to behave in a "more Islamic" way, often suffering social exclusion as a result.

Even in Palestine in the last decade the once prevalent secular trend has greatly diminished and the fundamentalist trend has increased. Religious freedom has declined everywhere, choking the Church's mission.


The easiest response for Christians to this situation tends to be one that is both equal and opposite: affirming the Christian identity with more stringency; a hardening of relations among themselves. This is evident in Egypt, but also in other situations.

Another way to react is to emigrate. Everyone, Christians and Muslims emigrate for socio-economic reasons, rarely for religious reasons. But the number of Christians who emigrate is far higher than that of Muslims and among the reasons why Christians leave those of cultural, and moral freedom are mounting. Emigration is facilitated by the fact that many Christians have relatives and friends abroad, the result of past migrations.

In the case of Egypt it is clear: Muslim migration has always been temporary, to the Gulf countries, people leave for a few years and then return. Instead Christians emigrate to North America or Europe or Australia, transplanting themselves in a comprehensive manner.

Emigration is not an entirely negative factor: it can also be opportunity for renewal. The Coptic community in the United States, for example, counts at least 700 thousand faithful. These were compared with American or Australian culture and sought to maintain the Coptic tradition - such as fasting, which is very intense and long - and respect for the clergy and for their Church. At the same time they have found other ways to celebrate, a greater closeness to the Holy Scriptures, Western theology. This has allowed for a true ecumenism and openness to other religious communities. And this is a positive contribution to their church.

Emigration has positive aspects also from an economic standpoint because it supports families and churches back home.

The presence of Islamic fundamentalism has positive aspects: it encourages Christians to live their faith in a more radical and intimate way, because there is an attack on their faith. Religious feeling is strengthened; at times, this religious sentiment in Christians and Muslims tends to fanaticism, but more often it arouses the desire for greater reflection, freedom and discovery.

The mission of the Christian minority

What makes matters worse is the fact numeric: Christians are a minority, they have neither numbers nor militias to claim a space. Their presence is neither supported in the region - because it is overwhelmingly Muslim - nor abroad because Europe and America are uninterested in the fate of Christians. When interest is aroused it is because the plight of Christians is linked to the economic and political situation.

We must take stock of these reasons in order to understand what future Christians have in the Middle East. And this is the purpose of the Synod: first comprehend the situation and then look for possible paths of action.

Many Christians are tempted to emigrate. This choice weakens those who remain: those leaving are generally the most capable in cultural and economic terms, and those who stay the weakest and the poorest. This is likely to provoke a vicious circle: the more people leave the more those who remain are oppressed. A similar thing happened in Turkey. Today there are more Syriac faithful in Saudi Arabia (migrants from India) than in Turkey and Syria combined. On a personal level, Christians a re highly adaptable to all situations. This means that in a one to two generations, Christians abroad become permanent residents and part of another Christian community.

But the question is: have Christians a specific mission in the Middle East?

If one thinks about the consequences for communities worldwide, it must be said that there is a risk of a great loss for world culture and the Universal Church: the end of the Churches of the East. Within a few decades a large part of the theological and intellectual heritage of the Churches of the East would be cancelled. And no book can replace it.

Severe loss

But it would be a great loss for the countries of the East. Christians are a different voice, a challenging one, diverse from Israel and the Muslims, with a specific culture that enriches this cultural area. It would also be a loss for society because Christians represent a tradition of freedom, of openness that is partly missing in the Islamic tradition, which is more closed in on itself.

This phenomenon has occurred many times in history: the Assyrian Christians who between the eighth century and the twelfth introduced Hellenistic thought in philosophy, medicine, science. And in 800 and 900, they also introduced European thought through their translations. They are a cultural bridge. And for the same Islamic world their disappearance would be a loss. In short, the emigration of Christians abroad and their disappearance from the East would be a loss for everyone, first and foremost for Muslims themselves.

Link to link...

Friday, November 27, 2009

Bomb Destroys Church in Iraq

MOSUL: Bombs hit a church and a convent in the main northern Iraqi city of Mosul on Thursday, causing severe damage but no casualties, religious leaders said.

One of the attacks hit the St. Theresa Convent of Dominican Nuns in the western Mosul Jadida (New Mosul) district, the chief representative of the Dominican order in Iraq, Father Yousif Thomas Mirkis, told AFP.

‘These attacks are aimed at forcing Christians to leave the country,’ he said noting that the bomb had been placed inside the convent grounds. The second bomb struck the Church of St. Ephrem in the same district, causing major damage to the church building, Patriarchal Vicar George Basman said. ‘It caused major damage and we cannot pray there,’ he said, adding: ‘There were no casualties because it was a working day.’Thousands of Christians fled Mosul last year because of violence that claimed the lives of 40 people from the community.

A report this month by Human Rights Watch said minority groups in northern Iraq, including Christians, have fallen victim to a struggle between Arabs and Kurds for control of a raft of disputed districts.

The Kurds have long laid claim to northern districts which they say had historical Kurdish majorities, including parts of Nineveh province, of which Mosul is the capital, the whole of the oil province of Kirkuk, and parts of Diyala and Salaheddin. Since the US-led invasion of 2003, hundreds of Iraqi Christians have been killed and several churches attacked.

Around 800,000 Christians lived in Iraq at the time of the invasion, but their number has since shrunk by a third or more as members of the community have fled abroad, according to Christian leaders. Although violence has dropped dramatically across Iraq compared to last year, attacks remain common in Mosul and the capital Baghdad.


Asia News article...

Monday, November 23, 2009

Palestinian Nun raised to the Altars

AP) – 23 hours ago

NAZARETH, Israel — A Palestinian nun who co-founded a charity dedicated to educating Arab girls on Sunday took an important step toward sainthood.

Thousands of worshippers gathered in the biblical town of Nazareth to attend the beatification of the late Sister Maria Alfonsina Danil Ghattas.

Ghattas helped found the Sisters of the Most Holy Rosary of Jerusalem in the 1880s. The order, highly regarded in Palestinian communities, continues to run schools for Palestinian girls in Israel, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

Ghattas died in Jerusalem in 1927 at the age of 83.

During Sunday's ceremony, the church unveiled a portrait of Ghattas.

Pope Benedict XVI approved the beatification in July — the final step before sainthood.

"The beatification of such an important figure of a woman is a particular comfort for the Catholic community in the Holy Land," Benedict said during his traditional Sunday noon blessing in St. Peter's Square.

Article here...

Who was Sister Marie Alphonsine Ghatta?

On November 22, Sister Marie Alphonsine will be solemnly beatified in the Basilica of the Annunciation in Nazareth. This is an opportunity to reflect on the life of this girl from Jerusalem to whom the Holy Virgin inspired the founding of the Congregation of the Rosary Sisters , the only indigenous religious community in the Holy Land.
Sultanah Maria Ghattas was born in Jerusalem on the 4th of October, 1843, and baptized on the 19th of November the same year. On 18th July, 1852, she received the Sacrament of Confirmation from the hands of His Beatitude Giuseppe Valerga, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem.

At the age of 14, she joined the Congregation of St. Joseph of the Apparition as a Postulant. On the 30th of June, 1860, she received the Holy Habit of the Religious of St. Joseph of the Apparition. Two years later, in 1862, she pronounced her three vows. In Bethlehem where she was assigned, she was entrusted with the teaching of Catechism. Besides, she founded Confraternities and Associations and promoted the devotion to Our Lady through the prayer of the Rosary.

She was favored with several apparitions of Our Lady who revealed to Mother Marie Alphonsine Her desire to begin the Congregation of the Rosary. The Virgin Mary appointed Fr. Joseph Tannous as her Director to administer the Congregation of the Rosary.

Read further her story...

Saturday, October 31, 2009