Fr Alexander Kurien- Director of the the Office of
Strategic Planning at the United States Department of State in Washington D.C.
USA – 23/3/14
We all are grieved by the demise of His Holiness Patriarch Moran Mor Ignatius Zakka Iwas I – the long-standing Patriarch, 122nd successor of St. Peter in the Apostolic See of Antioch and Supreme Head of the Syriac Orthodox Church. I was very fortunate and truly blessed to have spent a week with His Holiness at the Patriarchate in Damascus in 2002 and again, recently visited him in Beirut. On behalf of many well-wishers and on my own behalf I would like to express profound condolences over the bereavement of the Syriac Orthodox Church.
Blissfully departed Patriarch Moran Mor Ignatius Zakka Iwas I has been at the helm of the Most Holy Church of Syriac in a period of severe trials that have befallen to her lot. His biblical wisdom and profound Christian humbleness have made him one of the outstanding religious leaders of today. Working for the spiritual nourishment of his flock, he was a model of ardent worker in the field of Christ and tireless devotee who gained the church people’s love and respect.
The long-standing bonds of personal friendship and spiritual discipleship bless me. I remember with heartfelt warmth his amazing hospitality, our talks in Syria and Lebanon. I ardently pray for the repose of the soul of the Blissfully Departed Patriarch Moran Mor Ignatius Zakka in the bright place of light, in the place of rest whence all pain, sorrow and sighing have fled away and for his inclusion in the assembly of the elected of Christ. May His Beatitude Patriarch Moran Mor Ignatius Zakka of eternal memory be an intercessor for his people and for all the Orthodox Christians at the Throne of God, dwelling in the mansions of the righteous.
Eternal and blessed memory to him!
OCP News Service