Beirut (Agenzia Fides) - The conflict in Syria, the plight of the approximately 300 thousand greek-Melkite Catholic faithful in Syria, the appointment of the new Greek-Melkite Bishop of Homs: are among the topics on the agenda of the Greek Melkite Catholic Synod of the Church, which opened today in Beirut, in Lebanon. The meeting will be led by the Greek Melkite Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, Gregory III Laham, who presides an assembly of about 30 Bishops from the Middle East but also from America, Australia and Europe. The Assembly will be asked to appoint the new Bishop of Homs (currently vacant), the city at the center of violent conflict between regular troops and Free Syrian Army rebels.
According to sources of Fides, the prelates of the Greek Melkite Synod are very concerned about the fate of the Catholics in Syria, in the center of the conflict. In the discussion of the Synod, what will be explored are ways of non-violent reconciliation, alternatives to the military force, which form the deep desire of Christians in Syria and throughout the Middle East. The Synod of Bishops and representatives have welcomed the appeal by Patriarch Laham (see Fides 09/06/2012) and are living, in the month of June, a period of fasting, abstinence and prayer for peace in Syria, until the feast of Saints Peter and Paul. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 18/6/2012)