19 September 2014

On the initiative of Patriarch Gregorios III (Laham) and after consultation with other patriarchs and bishops in Damascus, daily prayer services for peace in Syria and the Middle East will be held in turn in the city’s churches of all denominations.

The first inter-denominational or ecumenical service will be held at 6:00 p.m. on September 22nd at the Melkite Greek Catholic Patriarchate in Damascus.

There will be daily prayers at 6:00 p.m. from September 22nd until October 22nd, 2014.

We invite all our readers to join us as we pray for peace in the churches of Damascus.

We suggest the following:

A Prayer for Peace in Syria and Assistance for its Refugees

Almighty and merciful God, grant that just as you made yourself known to Saul on the road to Damascus, you may soon convert hearts to peace in Syria, and that its people who have fled may soon return to their homeland.

We ask your blessing on those who, like your Son, have become refugees and have no place to call their own; look with mercy on those who today are fleeing from danger, homeless and hungry.

Bless those who work to bring them relief; inspire generosity and compassion in all our hearts; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Teachings of Christ

“Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account." (Matthew 5:11 ESV)

Lenten Prayer of St. Ephrem

O Lord and Master of my life, drive away from me the spirit of despondency, carelessness, love of power, and idle chatter. (Prostration)

Rather grant to me, Your servant, the spirit of wholeness of being, humility, patience, and love. (Prostration)

Yes, O Lord and King, grant that I may see my own faults and not condemn my brother; for You are blessed to the ages of ages. Amen. (Prostration)

Random Proverb

"My son, do not despise the Lord's discipline or be weary of his reproof, for the Lord reproves him whom he loves, as a father the son in whom he delights." (Proverbs 3:11,12 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Demons often transform themselves into angels of light and take the form of martyrs, and make it appear to us during sleep that we are in communication with them. Then, when we wake up, they plunge us into unholy joy and conceit. But you can detect their deceit by this very fact. For angles reveal torments, judgments and separations; and when we wake up we find that we are trembling and sad. As soon as we begin to believe the demons in dreams, then they make sport of us when we are awake too. He who believes in dreams is completely inexperienced. 'But he who distrusts all dreams is a wise man. Only believe dreams that warn you of torments and judgments. But if despair afflicts you, then such dreams are also from demons.

St. John Climacus, The Ladder of Divine Ascent