Latin Patriarch Fouad Twal of Jerusalem said that the historical period referred to as the “Arab Spring” puts the Middle East in a “serious and bloody whirlpool.”
The patriarch expressed his solidarity with all the displaced families, martyrs, and all people who had their houses demolished across the entire region, especially in Syria.
“We, people of the Holy Land, know well the meaning of displacement, deportation, murder, injustice, eradication and exile,” the patriarch added.
Patriarch Twal delivered a speech on Thursday in the international ecumenical congress organized by the Council of Churches of the Middle East in cooperation with the World Council of Churches. The speech was given during an event titled, “Christians in the Middle East: Presence and Testimony,” which took place in the Monastery of Our Lady of the Mountain in Adma, Keserwan, Mount Lebanon.
Patriarch Twal said that Christians of the Middle East in general, and Christians of the Holy Land in particular, are not passers, but they are at the heart of its identity.
“We believe in peace, justice, truth, love and freedom and bear witness to these values,” he added.
The patriarch called for renouncing violence and resorting to dialogue as a solution to the problems of the Middle East, stressing that it is time to hold dialogue away from lethal weapons, hatred, extremism and obnoxious sectarianism so that peoples seek a brighter, safer and more stable future on the basis of respect for human rights and real citizenship.
“Our region and its peoples pass through a dangerous juncture amid great difficulties from all directions. This juncture determines its future,” the patriarch added.
“We announce before everyone our solidarity with our people and our communities, as well as our sympathy for these bloody and difficult days.”
The patriarch referred to the pastoral letter of Pope John XXIII, entitled “Peace on Earth,” in which the pope determined four pillars, justice, truth, love, and freedom, upon which true peace is built.
The patriarch appealed to the international community to change its position towards this region.
“Looking to it (the region) through selfish interests and unjust ambitions has brought scourge of war, death, destruction, blood and tears to it for a hundred years and our poor and oppressed peoples were the sacrifice,” he said.
By: MidEast Christian News