Sunday, 4 December 2016

His Beatitude visited the Melkite parish in London, where he served the Divine Liturgy. Concelebrating were the parish priest, Father Shafiq Abouzayd, the assistant priest Father Robert Gibbons, together with Deacon Richard Downer.

His Beatitude preached on the need to remain faithful to the Eastern Christian heritage, as light comes from the East. He also congratulated clergy of the Melkite Church and members of the congregation whose name day falls on this day or in succeeding days: so all those named for St John of Damascus, St Barbara and St Nicholas.

At the close of the Liturgy, His Beatitude presented the patriarchal Cross of Jerusalem to Father Robert, in recognition of his service to the Melkite Church as Ecumenical Canon for the Diocese of Edmonton, Canada and for his work in Oxford and London at various institutes of learning.

Also receiving the patriarchal Cross during this visit was Valerie Chamberlain, who has worked for some years translating and editing His Beatitude’s writings, such as appeals, reports on relief work, pastoral letters and so forth.

Visit to Heythrop College, University of London

Earlier, on Friday 2 December, shortly after arriving in London from Dublin, Ireland, His Beatitude visited the Centre for Eastern Christianity at Heythrop College at the invitation of Mr Anthony O’Mahony. There His Beatitude gave a guest lecture to a circle of Oriental scholars, representatives of Catholic charities and members of the press about the situation in Syria today. After speaking for over an hour about the crisis and the suffering of Syrians in the conflict that has been taking place for more than five years, His Beatitude took questions and gave specific answers on a variety of topics relating to the crisis and asked for more action for peace on the part of Bishops’ Conferences and political leaders in Europe.  

V.C.


Teachings of Christ

“Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you." (Matthew 6:33 ESV)

Saint Nicholas of Myra

The truth of your deeds has revealed you to your flock, * as a rule of faith, an image of meekness, and a teacher of abstinence. * Therefore, you attained the heights through humility, * and riches through poverty. * O Father and Hierarch Nicholas, * pray to Christ God that our souls may be saved. (Troparion, Tone 4)

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

In Myra, You were shown to be a servant of the sacred things, O Holy Nicholas, * for, fulfilling the Gospel of Christ, you, O Venerable, laid down your life for your people, * and saved the innocent from death. * Therefore, you were sanctified as a great initiate of the grace of God. (Kontakion, Tone 3)

Random Proverb

"Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who gets understanding, for the gain from her is better than gain from silver and her profit better than gold." (Proverbs 3:13,14 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

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

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

It was said about John the Little that one day he said to his older brother: "I want to be free from care and not to work but to worship God without interruption." And he took his robe off, and went into the desert. After staying there one week, he returned to his brother. And when he knocked at the door, his brother asked without opening it: "Who is it?" He replied: "It's John, your brother." The brother said: "John has become an angel and is not among people anymore." Then he begged and said: "It's me!" But his brother did not open the door and left him there in distress until the next morning. And he finally opened the door and said: "If you are a human being, you have to work again in order to live." Then John repented, saying: "Forgive me, brother, for I was wrong."

Sayings of the Desert Fathers