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Syrian Orthodox Church weighs special synod to address Patriarch’s gesture of respect for Qu’ran

February 20, 2017

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.”

 
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