CWN - The residence of the apostolic nuncio in Damascus, Syria, was hit with mortar fire on Tuesday morning, November 5. There were no casualties.

A single explosive shell hit the 3rd floor of the nunciature, where the papal representative, Archbishop Mario Zenari, has his quarters. Apparently the residents had already risen, and employees had not yet arrived for work at the offices of the nunciature. Consequently no one was injured.

Archbishop Zenari downplayed the effect of the explosion, observing that “people suffer more every day.” He reminded a Vatican Radio office that mortar rounds have hit nearby buildings on several recent occasions. But an AsiaNews report suggested that the nunciature had been targeted intentionally.

Archbishop Zenari has been working to set up a peace conference that would include all parties involved in the current fighting in Syria. Rebel leaders have refused to participate in any talks until President Bashar Assad steps down; the ruling government has rejected that demand.

The explosion damaged the roof and façade of the building, but caused no structural damage. The nuncio’s office were open for business on Tuesday, and a spokesman said that although the staff would take some extra precautions, the nunciature would remain open—long after many other diplomats have left Syria.

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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)

Ascension

You ascended in glory, O Christ our God, * granting joy to Your disciples by the promise of the Holy Spirit; * through this blessing they were assured * that You are the Son of God * the Redeemer of the world! (Troparion)

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

When You fulfilled the divine plan for us * and united things on earth with things in heaven, * You ascended in glory, O Christ our God, * in no way departing from us but remaining inseparable, * and crying out to those who love You: “I am with you, and no one is against you.” (Kontakion)

Random Proverb

"Take my instruction instead of silver, and knowledge rather than choice gold, for wisdom is better than jewels, and all that you may desire cannot compare with her." (Proverbs 8:10,11 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

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

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

There is nothing impossible unto those who believe; lively and unshaken faith can accomplish great miracles in the twinkling of an eye. Besides, even without our sincere and firm faith, miracles are accomplished, such as the miracles of the sacraments; for God's Mystery is always accomplished, even though we were incredulous or unbelieving at the time of its celebration. "Shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect?" (Rom. 3:3). Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence.

St. John of Kronstadt, My Life in Christ