Syriac Orthodox Church of Antioch

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The Archdiocese Hosts The Annual Meeting of Christian Churches Together

His Eminence Mor Cyril Aphrem Karim, Archbishop of the Syriac Orthodox Archdiocese for the Eastern United States, hosted a dinner on Thursday, February 6th for participants of the 2014 Annual Meeting of the Christian Churches Together.

Christian Churches Together offers a space inclusive of the diversity of Christian traditions in the United States-Evangelical/Pentecostal, Orthodox, Catholic, Historic Protestant, Historic Black churches and Christian organizations. It is unique in providing a venue where these communions, representing over one hundred million Christians, come together to pray together, discern the will of the Holy Spirit, engage in respectful theological dialogue, provide fellowship and mutual support and seek common actions and statements.

CCT, of which our Archdiocese is a founding member, is the only Christian organization which brings together all traditions of the Christian faith in the USA. The theme of this year’s meeting was the issue of Mass Incarceration.

The dinner was held at the social hall of St. Mark’s Cathedral in Teaneck, New Jersey. Approximately one hundred members of the organization attended a prayer service at St. Mark’s Cathedral. Jimmy Zaitoun, a member of the St. Mark’s parish, was asked to speak on his personal experience of being unfairly detained for deportation for over a year. Special prayers were also said for the safe return of the two abducted Archbishops of Aleppo Syria: Archbishop Mor Gregorius Youhanna Ibrahim and Archbishop Boulous Yazigi.

At the conclusion of the prayer service the attendees were invited to the social hall to break bread together. His Eminence Mor Cyril Aphrem Karim blessed the meal and invited everyone to partake in the dinner. This time period afforded the attendees the opportunity to evaluate the day, and at the same time socialize in a relaxed environment with their peers. His Eminence thanked the Ladies Auxiliary of the Cathedral for preparing and serving the meal, and he also thanked the Children’s Violin Ensemble of the Archdiocese, under the leadership of Mr. Elias Sarkar, for providing background music during dinner.

A photo opportunity followed before the wrap up, after which His Eminence thanked everyone for attending, and prayed for the safe return of those who traveled from far distances to participate in the 2014 Annual Meeting.

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