VATICAN - The Synod of Bishops: a delegation to Syria to express solidarity and closeness to the population

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Vatican City (Agenzia Fides) - On Tuesday afternoon, October 16, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, Secretary of State, spoke at the Fourteenth General Congregation of the Synod of Bishops and announced that a Delegation of the Synod will visit Syria in coming days. These are his words: "We cannot be mere spectators of a tragedy like the one that is unfolding in Syria: some of the interventions we have heard in the hall bear witness to this. Certain that the solution to the crisis cannot be but political and thinking of the immense suffering of the population, the fate of the evacuees as well as the future of that nation, some of us suggested that our Synodal Assembly might express its solidarity.
The Holy Father has thus arranged for a delegation to make its way in the next few days to Damascus with the aim of expressing, in his name and in all our names: our fraternal solidarity to the whole population, with a personal offering from the Synodal Fathers as well as the Holy See; our spiritual closeness to our Christian brothers and sisters; our encouragement to all those who are involved in the search for an agreement that respects the rights and duties of all with particular attention to what is demanded by humanitarian law."
The delegation will be made up of 5 Synodal Fathers: Cardinal Laurent Mosengwo Pasinya, Archbishop of Kinshasa; Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue; Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, His Exc. Mgr. Fabio Suescun Mutis, Military Ordinary of Colombia; His Exc. Mgr. Joseph Nguyen Nang, Bishop of Phat Diem. In addition to the Synodal Fathers quoted above, the following persons are part of the delegation: His Exc. Mgr. Dominique Mamberti, Secretary for Relations with States of the Secretariat of State; Mgr. Alberto Ortega, Official of the Secretariat of State.
"It is expected - said Cardinal Bertone – that once the necessary formalities have been carried out with the Apostolic Nuncio and local authorities, the Delegation will make its way to Damascus next week.
In the meantime we pray that reason and compassion might prevail."(SL) (Agenzia Fides 17/10/2012)