CWN - The prior of a Syrian monastery called upon the international community to “stop doing business with Saudi Arabia.”

Father Jacques Mourad, who was held captive by the Islamic State for five months until he escaped, said that “if the world is really serious about putting an end to the ravages of the fanatics, then it will have to stop doing business with Saudi Arabia, because that is where the funding and weapons for ISIS are coming from.”

“Bombing achieves nothing,” he told Aid to the Church in Need. “The US has been bombing Syria and Iraq for years, and now the Russians are doing so too. And what have they achieved? Have they stopped the terrorist violence? Absolutely not!”

Father Mourad added that “the solution cannot be simply eliminating those who persecute us. The only way of stopping the extremists is to enter into a dialogue with Islam. That has been my personal experience.”

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Teachings of Christ

“The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:45 ESV)

Exaltation of the Cross

Save Your people, O Lord, and bless Your inheritance; * grant victory to Your Church over her enemies * and protect Your commonwealth by Your Cross. (Troparion - Tone 1)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Willingly lifted up on the Cross, O Christ God, * bestow Your compassions upon the new commonwealth that bears Your name. * By your power grant joy to Your Church, * granting her victory over her enemies. * May she have your Cross as the weapon of peace * and the invincible ensign of victory. (Kontakion - Tone 4)

The Church celebrates the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross on September 14th.

Random Proverb

Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine. (Proverbs 3:9,10 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

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

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Seek God daily. But seek Him in your heart, not outside it. And when you find Him, stand with fear and trembling, like the Cherubim and Seraphim, for your heart has become a throne of God. But in order to find God, become humble as dust before the Lord, for the Lord abhors the proud; whereas He visits those that are humble in heart, wherefore He says: “To whom will I look, but to the one who is meek and humble in heart?”

St. Nectarius of Aegina