As Christians and other minorities continue to be purged in the Middle East in general under the Islamic State and other jihadi organizations in particular, France sponsored an open UN Security Council meeting on March 27, to discuss “The Victims of attacks and abuses on ethnic and religious grounds in the Middle East. ”
While several Western nations sent high ranking officials to attend, the United States did not.
Since the Syrian city of Idlib fell to U.S.-supported, anti-Assad jihadis on March 28, Christian inhabitants have been attacked. Among other things, the jihadis kidnapped 57-year-old Greek Orthodox priest Ibrahim Farah, head of the Greek-Orthodox parish dedicated to the Virgin Mary.
Father Ibrahim Farah, a Greek Orthodox priest who chose to remain in the city and be with other Christians unable to flee, has been kidnapped and awaits a jihadi trial, where, no doubt, he will be “invited” to convert to Islam. Other Christians have also been abducted and are currently held captive.
ISIS destroyed the Virgin Mary Church in the Assyrian village of Tel Nasri in Khabur, Syria today at about 9 AM. after Assyrian and Kurdish fighters attempted to reenter the village. According to reports, the church has been leveled.
On February 23 ISIS attacked the 35 Assyrian villages on the Khabur River, including Tel Nasri, Nine Assyrian fighters died defending their villages in the initial attacks and there are reports that ISIS has executed at least 12 Assyrian fighters who were captured, two of them women.
On the occasion of the forthcoming radiant Feast-day of Resurrection of Christ, which Western Christians celebrate according to Western tradition (Paschalia), His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej has sent Easter greetings to the primates of non-Orthodox Churches: His Holiness Pope Francis of Rome, His Grace Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, and the Presiding Bishop of the Council of the Evangelical Church in Germany His Grace Bishop Dr. Heinrich Bedford-Strohm, as well as to dignitaries of other Protestant Churches in the world.
Serbian Patriarch Irinej congratulated most cordially the Feast-day of Resurrection of Christ to dignitaries and the faithful of traditional Churches and religious communities in Serbia: Roman Catholic Church, Slovak Evangelical Church in Serbia, Reformed Christian Church in Serbia and Methodist Church of Serbia.
His Holiness extended Easter greetings also to ecumenical and confessional bodies and organizations: World Council of Churches, Conference of European Churches, Lutheran World Council, Alliance of Reformed Churches, and other interchurch bodies and organizations.
The Editorial board of the Information Service of the Serbian Orthodox Church uses this opportunity to congratulate them the forthcoming bright holidays of the Resurrection of Christ with the joyful greeting:
Christ is risen! He is risen indeed!
Catholicos of All Armenians Received Participants of International Media Forum “At the Base of Mount Ararat”20. March 2015 - 13:56
On March 19, in the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians; received the participants of the 5th international media forum “At the Base of Mount Ararat”.
A World Council of Churches delegation led by the WCC's general secretary Rev. Olav Fykse Tveit is visiting Ukraine from March 17 to 20 to explore supporting peace initiatives in the country.
"We hope that this visit can be seen as an expression of how the whole ecumenical family prays and acts together for justice and peace for the people of Ukraine," said Tveit.
"We go together to see, to listen and to discern what our future steps together can be," he said, the WCC said in a statement avialable on March 17.