patriarch-gregoriosOn Thursday 18 July 2013 the head of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church, Patriarch Gregorios III  Laham, resident in Damascus, visited the monastery of St. Florian in Austria. Laham came to collect financial assistance from the Saint Lazarus Order for building a hospital in Syria. "Armament and military force cannot bring peace. They only leave losers on both sides in their wake, "warned the patriarch in his sermon. Together with the Linz Diocesan Bishop Ludwig Schwarz and Provost John Holzinger, Gregorios concelebrated a special service in the monastery.

The Patriarch referred mainly to the situation of Christians in Syria and called for solidarity. In the Middle East today there was at times very intense persecution of Christians, he lamented. But conflicts can only be resolved in mutual dialogue and discussion, Gregorios emphasized, in the presence of numerous spiritual representatives of the monastic community and the Diocese of Linz. At the same time, the Patriarch, during his visit to Upper Austria, urged the faithful, especially now "during this difficult time," to pray for peace in Syria and throughout the Middle East.

Source: Vatican Radio (German edition) Translation V.C.

 

Österreich: Melkitischer Patriarch zu Besuch

Das Oberhaupt der melkitisch griechisch-katholischen Kirche, der in Damaskus residierende Patriarch Gregorios III. Laham, hat am Donnerstag das Stift St. Florian besucht. Laham kam anlässlich einer Hilfslieferung des Lazarusordens für einen Krankenhausbau in Syrien. „Aufrüstung und Waffengewalt bringen keinen Frieden. Sie lassen auf beiden Seiten nur Verlierer zurück“, mahnte der Patriarch in seiner Predigt. Gemeinsam mit dem Linzer Diözesanbischof Ludwig Schwarz und Propst Johann Holzinger konzelebrierte Gregorios einen Festgottesdienst in dem Chorherrenstift.

Der Patriarch nahm vor allem auf die Situation der Christen in Syrien Bezug und rief zu Solidarität auf. Es gebe im Vorderen Orient heute eine teilweise sehr intensive Christenverfolgung, beklagte er. Die Konflikte könnten aber nur im gemeinsam Dialog und Gespräch gelöst werden, betonte Gregorios im Beisein zahlreicher geistlicher Vertreter des Stifts und der Diözese Linz. Gleichzeitig forderte der Patriarch bei seinem Besuch in Oberösterreich die Gläubigen auf, besonders jetzt, „in dieser schwierigen Zeit“, für den Frieden in Syrien und im ganzen Nahen Osten zu beten.
(kap 19.07.2013 sta)

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Teachings of Christ

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 22:37-40 ESV)

Saint Nicholas of Myra

The truth of your deeds has revealed you to your flock, * as a rule of faith, an image of meekness, and a teacher of abstinence. * Therefore, you attained the heights through humility, * and riches through poverty. * O Father and Hierarch Nicholas, * pray to Christ God that our souls may be saved. (Troparion, Tone 4)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

In Myra, You were shown to be a servant of the sacred things, O Holy Nicholas, * for, fulfilling the Gospel of Christ, you, O Venerable, laid down your life for your people, * and saved the innocent from death. * Therefore, you were sanctified as a great initiate of the grace of God. (Kontakion, Tone 3)

Random Proverb

"My son, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments, for length of days and years of life and peace they will add to you." (Proverbs 3:1,2 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Adam, before the fall ... participated in ... divine illumination and resplendence, and because he was truly clothed in a garment of glory he was not naked, nor was he unseemly by reason of his nakedness. He was far more richly adorned than those who now deck themselves out with diadems of gold and brightly sparkling jewels. St. Paul calls this divine illumination and grace our celestial dwelling when he says, 'For this we sigh, yearning to be clothed in our heavenly habitation, since clothed we will not be found naked' (2 Cor. 5:2).

St. Gregory Palamas (Topics of Natural and Theological Science no. 67, The Philokalia Vol. 4 edited by Palmer, Sherrard and Ware; Faber and Faber pg. 377)