Catholic World News

Aleppo prelate saw resurgence of faith around Easter

May 03, 2016

During a visit to Connecticut to thank the Knights of Columbus for their support of persecuted Syrian Christians, the Melkite Greek Catholic archbishop of Aleppo spoke about the destruction of his city and a resurgence of public expression of the faith around Easter.

“They destroyed the old city, many ancient houses,” Archbishop Jean-Clément Jeanbart said of Syrian rebel forces. “My archbishopric, which dates to the 18th century, was partially destroyed; my cathedral too, and other structures.”

Around Holy Week, he said that a temporary cease-fire “allowed us to have very beautiful celebrations for Easter, and we were surprised to see the huge number of faithful coming to church,” according to an Aleteia report.

Archbishop Jeanbart added:

I celebrated Palm Sunday, and there were about 3,000 people, and we were able to make a procession with a band. During Holy Week, thousands of people came. I celebrated in the largest church in Aleppo. We had several celebrations around the city, which means there are still a lot of people present. We didn’t expect that.

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