Statement by Bishops and Representatives of Jordan on Kidnapping of Syrian Prelates

Here is a statement released by the Bishops and Representatives of the Churches in Jordan regarding the kidnapping of two Metropolitans in Aleppo, Syria.

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Today, Tuesday May 21st, 2013 and after more than a month of the kidnapping of His Excellency the Syriac Orthodox Archbishop of Aleppo Yohanna Ibrahim and His Excellency the Greek Orthodox Archbishop of Aleppo Paul Yaziji as well as other priests kidnapped in Syria, bishops and Representatives of Churches in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, called for a  candles silent march, to declare their condemnation of the kidnapping, especially that it took place during  Easter time that is celebrated in accordance to the eastern calendar on 5 May, 2013.

The Heads of Churches in Jordan believe that the kidnapping their Excellencies, which is inacceptable, raises concerns not only over their lives, which are as sacred as the Holiness of the Almighty Creator, but also over the moral of the Syrian people especially those in the parishes the two Bishops represent and lead on the road of faith and good citizenship.   

Bishops Yaziji and Yohanna Ibrahim are known for their wide knowledge, cherished citizenship and moderate spiritual leadership. They authored many books, where believers and intellectuals alike find spiritual and intellectual richness. So,their kidnap takes way two of them most important Arab Christian figures of our present time.

The bishops and Representatives of the Churches in Jordan hope that this silent candle march, prayers and calls will soften hearts and bring back the esteemed Bishops immediately.  In this silent march, the bishops and representatives of the Churches in Jordan express solidarity with the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and all the East, represented by His Beatitude Patriarch Youhanna 10th Yaziji  Patriarch of Antioch and All the East,  and the Syriac Orthodox Church represented by His Holiness Mar Ignatius Zakka IIwas, and call for prayer for the two sister churches and for all the churches in the world, whose leaderships never seized to call upon all people of conscience and good will in collaboration with all official, religious and civil authorities for the release of the esteemed Bishops.

The Bishops and Representatives of Churches in Jordan, recognize the sensitivity of the current time and situation in the Arab region and pray to God, the Almighty to restore tranquility and stability to cherished Syria. They also call, at this particular time, for the respect of the Holy Places in Palestine, especially in East Jerusalem. They also hope that these days will encourage fraternal solidarity and national unity among the followers of Islam and Christianity in our dear country Jordan, and other countries in the Middle East.

The Heads and Representatives of the Churches reiterate call for the release of the two Bishops and their returned unharmed to their churches and society and pray to God, the Almighty to bless the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and keep the grace of security, stability and the cherished national unity under the leadership of His Majesty King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein.

Together with His Majesty, the Heads and Representatives of the Churches reaffirm the distinguished role played by the Arab Christians alongside their Muslim brothers: «The Arab Christians are an integral part of the Arab-Islamic civilization, and we must all work to maintain the promotion of Christian presence and reduce their immigration especially from Palestine and some Arab countries experiencing instability.»(11.3.2012)

May God keep Jordan safe and secure, and restored tranquility and peace to beloved Syria and to all countries of the East and the world.

Bishops and Representative of Churches

in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

Amman, 21 May 2013.

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