Here is the text of a message signed by the Patriarchs and leaders of the Christian communities for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.
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We the Patriarchs and heads of Christian communities in Lebanon, thank our Lord for our gathering this year also at the St. Aphrem II Syrian Orthodox Church, to celebrate the prayers for the unity of the holy, apostolic and universal Church of our Lord.
Prayerfully together we raise our raise our appeal to all our fellow Christians around the world, clergy and laity, who are celebrating the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. To share with us our fervent and passionate prayer for peace in our beloved and suffering Orient, especially in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Egypt, who are currently facing the harshest and relentlessly waves of persecution by fanaticism and terrorism. Our Peaceful people either suffer martyrdom for their faith or witness a systematic campaign of uprooting, forcibly driven and expelled to abandon their forefathers’ Homeland. They are subject to Ethno-religious cleansing which amount to Genocide and rendered threatened of extinction in their homeland. The sanctity of their churches and monasteries are violated, their religious icons, monks, nuns, priests and bishops were kidnaped, especially the icons of Ecumenism and Inter-faith the Archbishops of Aleppo Mar Gregeorios Yohanna Ibrahim and Paul Yaziji.
We appeal for your prayers and not to spare no efforts of advocacy where every possible and where ever you may be. To alleviate and end this painful and tragic reality, bring a safe and dignify release to all kidnapers and detainees and to preserve a sustainable and peaceful Christian presence in the Middle East.