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Melkite Greek Catholic Church Information Center

Efforts for Reunification of the Antiochian Patriarchate - Melkite Catholic relations with the Antiochian Orthodox by His Beatitude, Gregorios III, Patriarch / Batriyark of the cities of Antioch, Alexandria and Jerusalem, of Cilicia, Syria, Iberia, Arabia Mesopotamia, Pentapolis, Ethiopia, of all of Egypt and the entire East, Father of Fathers, Pastor of Pastors, Bishop of Bishops, the Thirteenth of The Holy Apostles

The reunification of the Antiochian Patriarchate has NOT happened.

Patriarchate
See of
Antioch
Patriarch
of
Antioch
Patriarch
Gregorios III
Melkite Greek
Catholic Church

 

Efforts
Reunification
of
Antiochian
Patriarchate
Melkite
Synod
1996
Zoghby
Initiative
Pope Gregorios
III
Maximos
V
Gregorios
II
Bishop
John
Elya
Pray

 

His Beatitude, Gregorios III, Patriarch / Batriyark of the cities of Antioch, Alexandria and Jerusalem, of Cilicia, Syria, Iberia, Arabia Mesopotamia, Pentapolis, Ethiopia, of all of Egypt and the entire East, Father of Fathers, Pastor of Pastors, Bishop of Bishops, the Thirteenth of The Holy Apostles is working for the reunification of the Antiochian Patriarchate.

2 Eastern Leaders Talk About Unity with Orthodox

2 Eastern Leaders Talk About Unity with Orthodox ZENIT - The World Seen From Rome

Code: ZE01102521

Date: 2001-10-25

2 Eastern Leaders Talk About Unity with Orthodox

Ukrainian Cardinal More Cautious About Prospects

VATICAN CITY, OCT. 25, 2001 (Zenit.org).- Two Eastern-rite Catholic leaders hope their communities will be a bridge of unity between the Roman and Orthodox Churches. But they showed different degrees of optimism on how fast that will happen.

Gregory III Laham, patriarch of Antioch of the Greek-Melkites, and Cardinal Lubomyr Husar, archbishop major of Lviv, Ukraine, met with journalists Tuesday to explain their Churches´ situation and eventual steps that might be taken after the Synod of Bishops. They are attending the synod, which ends Saturday.

Patriarch Gregory, whose see is in Damascus, was pleased with the welcome given by the synod to Eastern-rite Catholics (who have the same origin as the Orthodox, but are in communion with the Holy See of Rome), and noted a certain willingness "to listen to the voice of this little Eastern flock."

The issue of the relations between the Catholic and Orthodox Churches has been addressed at the synod. John Paul II has promoted the ties.

Gregory III announced that he wrote a letter, which was distributed to the synod participants, in which he proposed the reinforcement of relations between Middle Eastern Catholic Churches, and those of Eastern Europe and India, for the purpose of full unity with Rome.

"The synod does not end in Rome; we wish to walk together in the third millennium," the patriarch said.

Cardinal Husar, who must contend with Moscow´s Orthodox Patriarch Alexy II, was somewhat pessimistic. The "step from the ear to the heart might take longer and be more difficult than imagined," the Ukrainian cardinal cautioned.

The cardinal said he was disappointed "by the position of the patriarch of Moscow, who continues to speak of the ´Uniates´ -- a pejorative term used by Orthodox, who refer to Eastern-rite Catholics as a ´problem.´"

In fact, the Russian patriarch was categorically opposed to the papal visit to Ukraine last June.

According to the Ukrainian cardinal, "the closer we get to a solution of the problem between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox, the more excuses are found not to come to an agreement. Patriarch Alexy accuses Eastern-rite Catholics of using violence against Orthodox, but we are not aware of any such case."

"Because of this, we have asked him to point out at least one such case, but he has not given us an answer," the cardinal concluded.

Gregory III reported on progress in "the dialogue between patriarchs and the Pope, which is developing very well," and recalled that "in 1998 the Holy Father received all the patriarchs of the Middle East in audience." On that occasion, the Pontiff asked for support to have his Petrine ministry better understood.

The patriarchs responded by preparing a 20-page document, including proposals to develop relations between patriarchal Churches and the Apostolic See. The Holy Father said the document would be "studied with special care."

As John Paul II states in his encyclical "Ut Unum Sint," the papal ministry is a critical point for progress in the ecumenical dialogue. The Pontiff himself initiated a debate with the other Churches to find ways to apply his ministry, which might be accepted by the Orthodox, but without undermining Christ´s mandate to his Apostle Peter.

Gregory III announced that a conference of Eastern Catholic Churches will be held Nov. 19-23 in Rome, organized by the Oriental Institute.

Syrian Catholics and Orthodox to Mark Easter on Same Day

Syrian Catholics and Orthodox to Mark Easter on Same Day ZENIT - The World Seen From Rome

Code: ZE01101906

Date: 2001-10-19

Syrian Catholics and Orthodox to Mark Easter on Same Day

John Paul II Proposed This in Damascus

VATICAN CITY, OCT. 19, 2001 (Zenit.org).- It´s official: Catholics and Orthodox will celebrate Easter together in Syria, beginning next year.

"I signed the decree at the beginning of September for Greek Catholic faithful in Syria," Greek-Melkite Patriarch Grégoire Gregory III told the online edition of Inside the Vatican magazine.

On May 5, when he was visiting Damascus, John Paul II proposed that Christians in the East and West celebrate Easter on the same day, as a visible sign of the quest for full unity.

The difference in Easter dates was the result of Pope Gregory XIII´s reform of the liturgical calendar in 1582. Eastern Christians, most of them Orthodox, continued to calculate the date of Easter according to the old Julian calendar.

Now, the 350,000 Greek Catholics in Syria will return to celebrating Easter according to the Julian calendar. From 1724 to 1857 their Church used the Julian calendar and then changed to the Roman calendar.

The new move is an effort to build better relations with the Orthodox. "Seeing the necessity of the local Church, I find it´s better that we go back to the other calendar," Gregory III explained.

The patriarch said he hopes that other rites will follow and that eventually the whole Catholic Church will celebrate Easter together with the Orthodox.

"The Situation of the Christians in the Middle East"

The quote below is from his speech "The Situation of the Christians in the Middle East" given at the National Association of Diocesan Ecumenical Officers, Tuesday, May 21, 2002, Cleveland, OH

"The 1996 initiative ranks among our major ecumenical endeavors. It is a great worldwide adventure with respect to Rome and the Orthodox Church. Had it succeeded, it would have benefited our relations with both Rome and the Orthodox Church. We do not believe that it has been defeated. It is taking a temporary halt. We are determined to pursue it through new ways. The ecumenical movement was the companion of my life and my priestly ministry since 1962 when I founded the publication "Al wahdat Fil Iman" (The Unity in the Faith). It continued to be my companion in Jerusalem during my 26 years of service there and it will be the distinctive characteristic of my patriarchal program. I will sacrifice my life and every thing to advance the cause of the Church Unity. At the example of the great Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras I, I say: 'I do not fear anything anymore.'"

Writings

While an archbishop, His Beatitude, Gregorios III, Patriarch / Batriyark of the cities of Antioch, Alexandria and Jerusalem, of Cilicia, Syria, Iberia, Arabia Mesopotamia, Pentapolis, Ethiopia, of all of Egypt and the entire East, Father of Fathers, Pastor of Pastors, Bishop of Bishops, the Thirteenth of The Holy Apostles, wrote: "The greatest ecumenical initiative of our Church is the one taken in 1996 to unify the two branches, Catholic and Orthodox, of the Patriarchate of Antioch." He went on to call upon "the Heads of the Churches, to think seriously of launching a prophetic, ecumenical initiative on the occasion of the Great Jubilee."


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Melkite Greek Catholic Church Information Center
Martha Liles
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Melkite Greek Catholic Church Information Center is dedicated to my cousins: Bucky (Richard C. Liles) and Shirley (Shirley Jean Liles Buck). Bucky fell asleep in the Lord on Dec. 12, 2000 and Shirley fell asleep in the Lord on Nov. 8, 2001.
O God of all spirits and of all flesh, who have destroyed death, overcome the devil, and given life to the world: grant, O Lord, to the souls of your servants Bucky and Shirley, who has departed from this life, that it may rest in a place of light, in a place of happiness, in a place of peace, where there is no pain, no grief, no sighing. And since You are a gracious God and the Lover of Mankind, forgive him/her every sin he/she has committed by thought, or word, or deed, for there is not a man who lives and does not sin : You alone are without sin, your righteousness is everlasting, and your word is true. You are the Resurrection and the Life, and the repose of your departed servants Bucky and Shirley. O Christ our God, and we send up glory to You, together with your eternal Father and your all-holy, good and life-givng Spirit, now and always and for ages upon ages. Amen.

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