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Newton - The Rt. Rev. Exarch Joseph Haggar, Administrator pro tempore of the Eparchy of Newton, announces the following:

His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI has given assent to the canonical election by the Holy Synod of the Melkite Catholic Church of the Most Rev. Archbishop Cyril Salim Bustros as Metropolitan of Beirut and Jbeil, Lebanon, and, at the proposal of the Holy Synod of the Melkite Catholic Church, has named the Most Rev. Bishop Nicholas James Samra as Eparch of Newton.

In addition, His Holiness has also given assent to the canonical election of the Most Rev. Bishop Issam John Darwish as Archbishop of Zahleh and Furzol, Lebanon, and has named the Rt. Rev. Archimandrite Robert Rabbat as Eparch of St. Michael the Archangel of Sydney (Australia and New Zealand).

The Patriarchal Web Site announced the joyous news this way . . .

His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI has given his assent to the election of two archbishops, canonically elected by the Holy Synod of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church, at Ain Traz on 25 June 2010.

They are:

The Most Rev. Archbishop Cyril Salim Bustros, hitherto Eparch of Newton (USA), elected Metropolitan of Beirut and Jbeil, Lebanon; and The Most Rev. Bishop Issam John Darwish, B. S., hitherto Eparch of St Michael the Archangel of Sydney, (Australia and New Zealand), elected Archbishop of Zahleh and Furzol, Lebanon.  15 June 2011

As of today, 15 June 2011, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI, at the proposal of the Holy Synod of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church, has named two hierarchs for the eparchies of our expansion vacant as a result of the transfer of their respective eparchs to other eparchies.

They are:

The Most Rev. Nicholas James Samra, hitherto titular Bishop of Gerasa and former Protosynkellos of the Eparchy of Newton, (USA), named Eparch of the same Eparchy of Newton; and  The Rt. Rev. Archim. Robert Rabbat, hitherto rector of the Eparchial Cathedral of Newton and editor-in-chief of the eparchy’s journal Sophia, named Eparch of St Michael the Archangel of Sydney (Australia and New Zealand).