On Monday, 22nd April 2013 in Rome, Italy, His Grace Archbishop Douglas Lewins ORCC GB met with Mgr Alessandro Catullo in the shadow of the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore to formally initiate the integration of the Orthodox Church of Italy (www.chiesaortodossa.it founded by Msgr. Antonio De Rosso) as an Old Roman Catholic deanery for Italy of bi-ritual i.e. Western/Eastern liturgical use http://www.chiesaveterocattolicaromana.it/. According to the terms of the “Walsingham Declaration” signed by Mgr Lewins and Metropolitan Archbishop Jerome Lloyd OSJV of the ORCC LR, generally alternative use communities will be looked after by the ORCC GB and Latin use communities by the ORCC LR and jointly by the unity expressed in the declaration to present a unified Old Roman Catholic presence in Europe. By the erection of the bi-ritual Italian Deanery, Mgr Lloyd was happy to transfer enquiries from Italian clergy seeking Old Roman Catholic incardination. The Italian deanery is led by Mgr Alessandro Catullo for ORCC GB and the Latin Rite by Mgr Jonas Röggla CSJV, Episcopal Vicar for the ORCC LR Province of Europe in Italy whom Mgr Lewins co-consecrated with Mgr Lloyd last November.
On Sunday, 21 April 2013 in London, Ontario, Canada, His Eminence Archbishop Boniface Grosvold, Primate of the Old Roman Catholic Church Latin Rite (ORCC LR), consecrated to the holy Episcopate, the Most Reverend David Brian Fucci, Vicar Apostolic, having full ecclesiastical and legal jurisdiction over the Military Vicariate for the Old Roman Catholic Church. His Excellency, remains a military chaplain, as well as the Founder and Minister General of the Order of Friars Minor Conventual in the Old Roman Catholic Church. The Primate was assisted by His Excellency Bishop Benedict Gregory, OSB, Archbishop of Toronto, as co-consecrator. Clergy of the Military Vicariate were represented by the Vicar General, the Rt. Reverend Monsignor Joseph Thomas; witnesses included Canon Nioclás Kelly (Diocese of Kentucky ORCC LR).
A Military Vicariate is a canonical jurisdiction placed under the care of one who has spiritual responsibility for the military personnel in that jurisdiction. The Vicariate has jurisdiction over the military chaplains, personnel of the armed forces and their families. The Military Vicariate under Bishop Fucci was canonically erected in 2010 to serve military personnel serving in the USA armed services in Active, Reserve, National Guard and Veteran personnel. The Military Vicariate serves only those priests who belong to Old Roman Catholic jurisdictions that are in intercommunion with ORCC LR, and who are incardinated in the Military Vicariate. All priests incardinated in the Military Vicariate must remain in canonical residence with their Ordinary.
A wide range of chaplaincies are provided by the Vicariate including stational bases in the USA to wherever armed services personnel may be deployed in the world, as well as all institutional chaplaincies (Fire departments, hospitals, hospices, police departments, prisons (State and Federal) etc.
Please pray for His Excellency Bishop Fucci, the serving chaplains, the personnel and the families of the Old Roman Catholic Church Military Vicariate.
Effective April 23, 2013, His Excellency Bishop Fucci has appointed Rt. Reverend Monsignor Joseph Thomas as Vicar General of the Military Vicariate for the Old Roman Catholic Church, its Ecclesiastical Endorser and Canon Theologian.
ORCCLR CIC Article II Section 2: The Archbishop-Primate shall appoint a Vicar Apostolic, who shall assist the Archbishop-Primate in the exercise of his duties, and shall with the Archbishop – Primate be responsible to the General Synod of this Communion. The Vicar Apostolic shall be the assistant of the Archbishop-Primate in all matters ecclesiastical.
ORCCLR CIC Article II Section 9: The Archbishop-Primate shall be the Archbishop-Metropolitan of the Primatial See of Latin Rite Archdiocese of Canada and he shall appoint from among the Bishops, Priests and Laity, such qualified persons to form the Primatial Chapter and Curia of the Church Latin Rite.
Statement issued by the Patriarchate of Antioch and All the East for the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and All the East of the Syriac Orthodox Church
On Monday, 22 April 2013, we were taken by surprise at the news that our brothers Bishop Paul (Yazigi) of Aleppo and Alexandretta and Bishop John (Ibrahim) Syriac Orthodox Bishop of Aleppo, had been kidnapped on their way back to Aleppo after accomplishing a humanitarian mission. We deeply regret what happened as we regret all similar acts targeting civilians, regardless of their belonging and therefore we address to the local and international communities the following declaration:
1- The Christians living here are an essential part of the land. They suffer the pain every person suffers; they work as messengers of peace to stop the perpetration of injustice against the oppressed. They follow the teaching of the Gospel that says love is at the basis of human relations. The official positions expressed by the spiritual leaders of the various churches highlight these beliefs and the mission fulfilled by the two kidnapped bishops is further proof of this orientation.
2- The Christians in this part of the East are deeply saddened by what their country is going through, namely the violence that is dividing the sons of the same country and endangering civilians who conduct their lives in peace. Kidnapping is a terrible expression of this violence and it is to be condemned without hesitation as it threatens the lives of unarmed individuals. We appeal to the kidnappers to respect the life of the two kidnapped brothers, and we call on everyone to put an end to all the acts that allow or create confessional and sectarian schisms among the sons of the same country.
3- We understand the preoccupation of the Christians following this event. We call on them to be patient, to adhere to the teachings of their faith, and to rely on God whose strength lies also in our weakness. We believe that to remain in our land and to do all that is possible to make it a land of love and coexistence, is a powerful tool in its defense. We are also aware that all citizens from all confessions are suffering the same pain due to the violence, and we pray that the Lord may strengthen them and console in their difficulties. Together with them we raise our voices and reject all sorts of violence that tears our country and makes our hearts bleed.
– 4 In this painful situation, we call on the world to work to end the Syrian crisis, so that it may go back to being a garden of love, security and peaceful coexistence. Political strife should not be resolved at the expense of the men and women of this region.
5- We also call all the churches in the world to stand fast in the face of what is happening and provide a witness to the power of love in this world. It is necessary to take steps that attest to the fact that they reject the violence to which the populations of these lands are being subjected to today.
6- We take the opportunity to call on our brothers of all Islamic confessions to work together, the ones with the others, to demonstrate that we refuse to consider man as a product that can be bought or sold, a shield to be used in war, a political or financial good of exchange.
7- We address the kidnappers and tell them that those whom they kidnapped are messengers of peace in this world, as witnessed by their religious and social missions. We appeal to them to deal with this painful episode peacefully as violence is useful only to the enemies of our nation.
Finally, we pray the Lord in these blessed feasts that this tragedy may end, that peace may prevail in the hearts of all, and so that country may enjoy the peace and prosperity it deserves.
Patriarch John X Yazigi Patriarch & Mar Ignatius Zakka I Iwas
- Rebels kidnap two Aleppo bishops (orcce.wordpress.com)
There have appeared many reports in both the Eastern and Western press that the two hierarchs who were abducted yesterday by terrorists in Syria, Metropolitan Boulos Yazge, Antiochian Orthodox Archbishop of Aleppo, and Archbishop Youhanna Ibrahim, Syriac Archbishop of Aleppo, have been released.
His Eminence Metropolitan Philip spoke by phone this morning to His Beatitude John X, Patriarch of Antioch and all the East (pictured), who said that these reports are false, and that the release of these two hierarchs has NOT taken place.
We ask you to continue to pray for their safety, and eventual release.
Confirmed updates will be published as soon as they are known.
“The two are on their way to the patriarchy in Aleppo,” Bishop Tony Yazigi told Reuters in the capital Damascus.
They were seized on Monday near the commercial and industrial hub of Aleppo, which is contested by rebels and forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad.
The authorities blamed rebels for the incident but Western-backed Syrian opposition fighters in the province denied they had kidnapped the two and said they were working for their release and trying to find out who had taken them.
The bishops were the most senior church figures caught up in the fight between Assad’s forces and opposition fighters trying to end four decades of family rule by Assad and his late father.
- Rebels kidnap two Aleppo bishops (orcce.wordpress.com)
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