CWN - The Syrian Orthodox Church may convene a special synod session to address tensions that erupted after Patriarch Ignatius Ephem II raised a copy of the Qu’ran, in a gesture of reverence, during an inter-religious meeting.

Six metropolitan archbishops of the Syrian Orthodox Church condemned the gesture as a “betrayal of the faith,” and claimed that the Patriarch had forfeited his title as defender of the Orthodox faith. Their public criticism in turn prompted thirty other archbishops to come to the Patriarch’s defense and decry the critics for their “rebellion against the Church.” Although the six dissident archbishops have subsequently sent a letter of apology, the majority of prelates judged it inadequate.

Huddling this weekend at the headquarters of the patriarchate in Lebanon, prelates discussed a special synod meeting to “make the right decisions and take the suitable measures.”


Teachings of Christ

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” (Matthew 5:43-44 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, keep my words and treasure up my commandments with you; keep my commandments and live." (Proverbs 7:1,2 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

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

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

God is a fire that warms and kindles the heart and inward parts. Hence, if we feel in our hearts the cold that comes from the devil - for the devil is cold - let us call on the Lord. He will come to warm our hearts with perfect love, not only for Him but also for our neighbor, and the cold of him who hates the good will flee before the heat of His countenance.

St. Seraphim of Sarov