His Holiness The Patriarch Receives The Syrian Catholic Patriarch
On Thursday 20 August 2009, His Holiness Moran Mor Ignatius Zakka I, Patriarch of Antioch and all the East, received the new Patriarch of the Syrian Catholic Church, His Beatitude Mor Ignatius Joseph III at St. Aphrem Monastery in Ma’arat Saydnaya, Damascus. Several Archbishops, Bishops and clergy of our Church were present. After arriving at the Monastery for his first visit to our Patriarchate follwing his installation as patriarch, His Beatitude was lead to Sts. Peter and Paul Patriarchal Cathedral where he offered thanksgiving prayers. He was then lead to the reception hall where he was warmly greeted by His Holiness, the Holy Father. His Beatitude Patriarch Joseph III introduced the delegation accompanying him which was comprised of several Bishops and priests of the Syrian Catholic Church. He then delivered a speech in which he thanked his elder brother, the Syrian Orthodox Patriarch, for sending an Episcopal delegation to represent the Church at the installation of the Syrian Catholic Patriarch. He also expressed his appreciation for the efforts of His Holiness Patriarch Zakka in serving his community, especially, the great institutions which His Holiness established in Ma’arat Saydnaya.
His Holiness Patriarch Zakka responded with a welcoming speech in which he conveyed to Patriarch Joseph III His Holiness’ personal congratulations, as well as, those of their Eminences the Archbishops of the Church on his installation as Patriarch of the Syrian Catholic Church. Gifts then were exchanged by both Patriarchs. During the banquette offered in honor of Patriarch Joseph III, fruitful discussion took place around promoting fraternal relations between the two sister churches.
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