The Plight of the Christians of the Middle East:
Message from the Catholic & Orthodox Pastoral Consultation in England, September 2014
The Catholic & Orthodox Pastoral Consultation in England, meeting in London for its 2nd Session, wishes to add its voice of support and union in prayer to the Apostolic Churches of Iraq and Syria, their Patriarchs and all their people, to the message of solidarity in prayer and hope from the 13th Session of the Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue between the Orthodox and Catholic Churches, that met earlier this month in Amman, Jordan.
At the present moment of their suffering, dispersal and witness for the sake of faithfulness to Christ, we pray for their continued growth, strength and enduring presence in the Middle East in peace and safety, as integral members of their societies’ history, identity and future.
Increasingly, these very Churches in diaspora are becoming close to us in England as the Christians of the Middle East seek safety and a future in the West. Already they are forming part of the developing character and shape of the Christian Church in Britain as a whole, not least as we seek the restoration of our unity in the one Body of Christ. To them and to their bishops among us we also extend our heartfelt concern and prayer for the security and deliverance of their families and fellow Church members in their homelands.
Above all we pray for a peace that is just, in which those of all faiths may live in harmony and freedom, Christian refugees can return to restore their Churches, wrongs are put right through mutual and equal respect, enemies reconciled and hope for the future assured.
Fr Mark Woodruff - Society of St John Chrysostom
Archpriest Stephen Platt - Fellowship of St Alban & St Sergius
29 September 2014
Note: The Catholic-Orthodox Pastoral Consultation is an initiative to discuss matters of mutual concern and interest, jointly sponsored by the Fellowship of St Alban & St Sergius and the Society of St John Chrysostom, sister societies founded in the 1920s to raise awareness of the Eastern Churches and to work for East-West Church Unity.