Catholic World News

New Melkite Patriarch receives papal welcome

June 22, 2017

Pope Francis has granted a request for ecclesiastical communion from the newly elected Melkite Catholic Patriarch Youssef Absi of Antioch.

The new Patriarch was elected on June 21 by the Melkite Synod. As with all the Eastern Catholic churches, it is traditional for the new Patriarch to petition the Pope for an extension of full communion, ensuring the continuation of ties to the Holy See.

In a message to the Syrian prelate, the Pope offered his congratulations and his support, noting that his election “comes at the time of a delicate situation for the venerable Greco-Melkite Church and when many Christian communities in the Middle East are called to bear witness in a special way to their faith in the dead and risen Christ.”

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