Cardinal Dolan Prays For Return Of Orthodox Archbishops Kidnapped In Syria

April 26, 2013 By Public Affairs Office

WASHINGTON—Cardinal Timothy Dolanof New York, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB),called the April 22 kidnapping of two Orthodox archbishops in Syria and thekilling of their driver "a sign of the terrible violence that is destroying thefabric of Syrian society." He joined Pope Francis in praying for their return inan April 26 statement and said the Catholic Church would "continue to workthrough all channels," including the Vatican and the diplomatic andinternational communities for their release.

The full statementfollows:

Statement of
Timothy Cardinal Dolan
Archbishop of New York
President, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
April 26, 2013

The kidnappings of twoarchbishops in Syria and the murder of their driver continue to weigh heavilyon the hearts of people of good will. The Greek Orthodox Metropolitan of Aleppoand Iskanderun, Boulos Yazigi, and the Syriac Orthodox Metropolitan of Aleppo,Youhanna Ibrahim, remain in our prayers. Ironically, the two men were returning from amission of mercy to aid Syrians suffering from the violence gripping theirnation when they were accosted. We join with our Holy Father, Pope Francis, in"praying that they may return to their communities soon." The kidnapping of twomen of peace is a sign of the terrible violence that is destroying the fabricof Syrian society. We will continue to work through all channels with the HolySee, the diplomatic and international community and all agencies of good will. Iplead for their release and for a political solution that ends the violence andprotects the citizenship rights of all Syrians, including minorities.

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Keywords: Cardinal Timothy Dolan, USCCB, CatholicChurch, Pope Francis, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Greek Orthodox,Syriac Orthodox, archbishops, Metropolitan Boulos Yazigi, Metropolitan YouhannaIbrahim, religious freedom, violence, Syria, kidnapping, release, prayers,Vatican, diplomatic community

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