Damascus 29 September 2013

Patriarch Gregorios III presided at the celebration of the Divine Liturgy in the Cathedral of the Dormition in Damascus on Sunday 29 September. The day marked the 150th anniversary of the founding of the Saint Vincent de Paul Society in Damascus.

Concelebrating with His Beatitude was Archbishop Joseph Absi, Patriarchal Vicar and other members of the clergy. Among other dignitaries present were the Minister for Social Affairs, Kinda al-Shamat  and other members of Parliament. The grandson of righteous layman George Bitar was present in the congregation which filled the church. Some Muslims were present to celebrate the occasion alongside Christian worshippers.

In his sermon, His Beatitude spoke of the need for more solidarity among all Syria’s citizens despite the crisis, as this would be the guarantee for reconciliation and a peaceful future for the country.

V.C.


Teachings of Christ

“Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you." (Matthew 6:33 ESV)

Dormition

O Mother of God, in giving birth you preserved virginity; * and in falling asleep you did not forsake the world. * You are the Mother of Life and have been transferred to life, * and through your prayers you deliver our souls from death. (Troparion - Tone 1)

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

Neither the tomb nor death could detain the Mother of God, * who is unsleeping in her prayers and our unfailing hope in her intercession; * for He Who dwelt in her ever-virgin womb, * transferred to Life the Mother of Life. (Kontakion - Tone 2)

Random Proverb

"Let your heart hold fast my words; keep my commandments, and live." (Proverbs 4:4 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

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

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

For Christians above all men are forbidden to correct the stumblings of sinners by force...it is necessary to make a man better not by force but by persuasion. We neither have autority granted us by law to restrain sinners, nor, if it were, should we know how to use it, since God gives the crown to those who are kept from evil, not by force, but by choice.

St. John Chrysostom