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September, 2018
Volume 44, Number 3
  
18 January 2013
J.D. Conor Mauro




In this 23 July 2011 photo, Cardinal Antonios Naguib, Coptic Catholic patriarch of Alexandria, Egypt, celebrates the Divine Liturgy at St. Patrick Church in Nashville, Tennessee, as part of a tour of Coptic Catholic communities across the United States. This week, Cardinal Naguib submitted his resignation for health reasons. (photo: CNS/Theresa Laurence, Tennessee Register)

New Coptic Catholic patriarch elected (Fides) The Synod of the Coptic Catholic Bishops, who gathered in Cairo from 12 to 16 January, received a letter of resignation for health reasons by Patriarch Cardinal Antonios Naguib and, after a day of spiritual retreat, proceeded to the election of his successor. On 15 January, the synod canonically elected the new patriarch of Alexandria of the Copts, His Beatitude Ibrahim Isaac Sidrak, who then received the Ecclesiastical Communio granted by His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI…

Catholic hospital in Jordan struggles to help Syrian refugees (Catholic News Agency) A Jordanian Catholic hospital is appealing for more money to help with the growing influx of Syrian refugees fleeing the conflict in their homeland. "What we're asking for is just to help us help others," said Sister Alessandra Fumagalli, at a Catholic Near East Welfare Association gathering on 16 January at the Vatican. Sister Fumagalli made her remarks at the headquarters of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, speaking alongside Cardinal Edwin O'Brien, Cardinal Leonardo Sandri and the archbishop of Ottawa, Terrence Prendergast. The hospital in the Jordanian town of Karak run by the Comboni sisters, known as "the Italian Hospital," has 40 beds, 30 consultant doctors and 5 resident doctors, but the space for patients remains limited. "We have 15 people coming in three times a day because we just don't have enough seats for them," she said. "We can't afford to buy medical equipment, so CNEWA is helping us a lot in these things," Sister Fumagalli explained. The Catholic charity organized the event where Sister Fumagalli spoke. It brought together over 120 participants, including the Italian actor Giorgio Lupano and Italian political representatives, hoping to tell Italians of the worsening situation for Christians in the Middle East. "The main purpose was to raise awareness in Italy of how much the Eastern Churches are in need, in order to support them," said Emanuelle Latini, the administrator of the association's office at the Vatican…

Jordan won’t accept new refugees if Syria falls (New York Times) In the latest sign of the intense pressures Syria’s war has placed on its neighbors, Jordan’s prime minister said Thursday that his country would not accept thousands of new refugees likely to flee Syria if President Bashar al Assad’s government collapsed. Jordan’s government would instead deploy special forces troops to create “secure safe havens” for the refugees inside Syrian territory. These comments underscored mounting fears in Jordan that it was being destabilized by the influx of more than 200,000 refugees — many living in miserable conditions in a camp near the border — and by the threat of a spreading militancy from the war. Despite such concerns, Jordanian officials on Thursday tried to soften the prime minister’s comments, which raised the possibility of both a Jordanian military incursion into Syrian territory and a new humanitarian crisis. A government spokesman, Samih Maytah, clarified: Jordan will continue receiving the refugees “as long as the flow continues at the same rate,” he said. But if tens or hundreds of thousands came across — “if the regime falls or chaos spreads” — Jordan will stop taking them in…

Pursuit of ‘ideal’ Georgian-Armenian relations includes focus on churches (Azatutyun.am) Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili pledged to help make Georgian-Armenian relations “ideal” during his first official visit to Yerevan on Thursday. He also announced an ambitious initiative to end a long-running dispute between the government-backed Armenian and Georgian churches after holding talks with President Serzh Sarkisian and Prime Minister Tigran Sarkisian — specifically, the thorny issue of worship sites claimed by the Armenian Apostolic and Georgian Orthodox churches. The unresolved dispute centers on ownership of several formerly Armenian churches in Tbilisi as well as abandoned medieval monasteries in Armenia’s Lori province bordering Georgia. The supreme heads of the two churches failed to reach any agreements during almost one week of negotiations held in June 2011. Ivanishvili said he proposed that his private charity finance the renovation of all disputed churches “in both countries” pending a joint Georgian-Armenian study of their origin. “We could also do archaeological work there, which I’m also ready to finance through my fund,” he said…

Jordan’s Islamists, opposition rally against vote (Daily Star Lebanon) Hundreds of Jordanian Islamists, youth activists and other opposition groups are rallying in capital city Amman and calling for a boycott of next week’s parliament elections. Friday’s peaceful demonstration drew about 1,300 Muslim Brotherhood members and others, united in the election boycott and in demands that King Abdullah II cede some of his powers and give parliament more say in the country. The demonstration comes just five days before elections that will for the first time see a prime minister emerge from among the winning candidates, rather than by appointment by the king. The protesters say such reforms do not go far enough…



Tags: Refugees Jordan Armenian Apostolic Church Coptic Catholic Church Georgian Orthodox Church