Rorate Caeli

Syria: let us pray for our Christian brethren

July 26, 1914
Seeing the unfolding events in the Syrian crisis is like watching the July 1914 Crisis, which will be widely discussed next year. We are not affirming that it is the beginning of a new continental or world war, not at all. However, as in the Balkan interventions of the early 20th century, it is clear that there is an interest of some Powers to pursue an armed intervention in an area where multiple, complex and deeply historical interests are at stake, it is absolutely clear that it cannot end well, and it is reasonably safe to predict that it may end with results that are opposed to the core interests of those same Powers. It is like witnessing a car crash and not being able to do anything.

Let us pray for those who will lose the most in any intervention, the weakest link in the Middle East: Christians.

From L'Osservatore Romano and the Chaldean Bishop of Aleppo, Antoine Audo, S.J. (The Tablet):

A Syrian Chaldean Catholic bishop yesterday warned that armed intervention in Syria could unleash a "world war".

Bishop Antoine Audo of Aleppo told Vatican Radio: "If there is an armed intervention, that would mean, I believe, a world war. That risk has returned."

The Syrian prelate was speaking as Britain and the US discussed plans for military action in response to a suspected chemical weapons attack in Syria last week, plans strongly opposed by Russia and Iran.

"We hope that the Pope's call for real dialogue between the warring parties to find a solution can be a first step to stop the fighting," he said.

The Vatican's semi-official daily, L'Osservatore Romano, meanwhile criticised Western powers in an editorial and called for greater "prudence".

"The drumbeat of an armed intervention by Western powers is becoming ever more insistent and ever less restrained by prudence," it said.
From the Moscow Patriarchate (AsiaNews):

Moscow Patriarchate: acting as "international executioners," the US is sacrificing Muslims and Christians in Syria

Speaking to AsiaNews, Metropolitan Hilarion, head of the Department for External Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate, condemns threats of NATO intervention without a UN mandate. More victims will be "sacrificed on the altar of an imaginary democracy".

Moscow (AsiaNews) - As a Western military intervention against the regime of Bashar al-Assad appears increasingly likely, the Russian Orthodox Church expresses "strong concern" about possible developments of the crisis, this following US charges that the regime used chemical weapons against civilians.

"Once again, as was the case in Iraq, the United States is acting as an international executioner", said Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, head of the Department for External Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate.

Speaking to AsiaNews, the representative of the Russian Orthodox Church strongly criticised the US position, which is "completely one-sided."

"Without the endorsement of the United Nations, they want to decide the fate of a whole country of millions of inhabitants."

"Once again," Hilarion warned, "thousands of lives will be sacrificed on the altar of an imaginary democracy;" among them, according to the Metropolitan, there are, first of all, "Christians, about whose fate no one cares."

They are at "risk of becoming hostages to the situation and the main victims of radical extremist forces, who, with the help of the United States, will come to power."

"The international community," he concluded, "must do everything to avoid that events develop in this direction." (M.A.)


  1. My cab driver the other night was from the region. He said it would be complete insanity for America to engage there. Thus we're certain to do it. God help us all.

  2. The US has had assets in the Jordan/Turkey/Syria region for more than a year. The push for a new world order defies what is rational, just, or prudent. We continue to pray for all the innocents--in Syria and the troops who will be ordered to murder them.

    May our Blessed Mother protect her children and may she give us the strength and courage to speak against evil.

  3. Obama the warmonger!

  4. This is what happens to Christendom where Christ has been removed. The west is heading for a catastrophe if it takes on an Syrio-Iranian alliance backed by Russia and China. The godless west deserves the humiliation that is coming its way. The sooner the better. It strides around arrogantly Christless.

    Russia is frankly the only country that comes out of this with any credibility. Of course, they have their national interests like every side concerned. However, Putin knows that armed aggression is to violate the territorial and national sovereignty of Syria. It will be met by stern resistance by Syria and Iran in any case.
    The UK and France have so many problems at home they seek to divert our attention away from national debts almost tantamount to financial insolvency once interest rates begin to rise again. USA is mostly in the same position.

    Putin does not want to revert to an old Cold War style of foreign policy necessarily but, if it happens, the west will not be able to rely on Latin America or many African states as allies.

    May God have mercy on us all. May we all have the grace of a good truly contrite Confession and be prepared for whatever may occur. I have no confidence in The Vatican for anything but I do trust my local traditional parish priest and the Latin Mass.

  5. Indeed we must pray earnestly for our Christian and all men and women of goodwill in that poor troubled region!
    I tremble to think of any 'Christian' sentiment which might resonate in the mind of Mr. ('God Bless Planned Parenthood) Obama, Mr. (Same-sex marriage) Cameron, or Mr. (Same-sex marriage) Holland.
    Their minds are dimmed by worldly darkness and their overweening deification of their technology.
    I pray God restrain and rebuke them while He extends His protection to our Christian brethren and all innocents.
    What if the US congress, the UK parliament, and the French National Assembly refuse to follow-through with the bellicose action these three men are already committed to?
    Pray the rosary every day, my friends!

  6. An awful situation. Let us pray common sense and grace prevail against politicians with agendas to further their own ends. One thing is for certain: if the West attacks Syria more Christians will die.

  7. Indeed, these are difficult moments for Syria and for the whole region of the Middle East, let us entrust to Our Lady Help of Christians all of our Christian brethren and all the Syrian people.

    May the Good Lord have mercy of them.

    Mary Help of Christians pray for us!!!

  8. The impending strike makes no sense to me. It seems neither in the U.S.'s national interest nor does it seem to have even a remotest argument of constitutionality.

    Let us pray for all the people of Syria of all faiths and also for our military who may be asked to undertake a dubious and dangerous adventure. It is a difficult time for our servicemen and women who may be ordered to do morally questionable acts.

  9. The ugly reality is that the Bishop is correct. its a proxy war between the US and were hoping Iran. WWIII? Possibly. How odd that now 'al quads' are freedom fighters. Full circle on the idea of the mujahadeen. I fought in Iraq, lost my left foot and damaged my right leg. For what? I don't see any reason to fight another pointless war in the desert. Three in 12 years if we invade. What a waste of lives and time.

  10. Gog and Magog seem to be taking the measure of one another at the moment.
    Hats off to you jon pressley.
    My cousin fought in the battle for Fallujah.

  11. Any Christian US pilots ordered to bomb civilian infrastructure should fly their aircraft to Russia and request asylum.

  12. God bless all the Christians that are going to be killed by the Sunni Muslims/al-Qaeda/Muslim Brotherhood.

    New Catholic has a special feel for what is truly important. Like the centenary of the Great War of August 1914.

  13. Most sweet Heart of Jesus, grant that peace, the fruit of justice and charity, may rein throughout the world. Amen.

    Pray for peace in the Middle East especially for our persecuted Christian brethren in Syria.

    "We desire, therefore, Venerable Brethren, that supplications be poured forth to the Most Holy Virgin for this request: that the situation in Palestine may at long last be settled justly and thereby concord and peace be also happily established."

    We place great confidence in the most powerful patronage of Our Heavenly Mother. At the same time, implore her, with renewed prayers, that at long last there may shine forth, as a gift from Heaven, mutual, fraternal and complete peace among all nations and the longed for harmony among all social classes.

    Let there be an end to dissensions that redound to no one's advantage.
    Let there be a reconciliation of disputes that often sow the seeds of further misfortunes.
    Let international relations, public and private, be fittingly strengthened.
    Let religion, the foster mother of all virtues, enjoy the liberty to which she is entitled.
    And let men set about their peaceful work of abundant production for the common welfare - with justice their guide and charity their motive.

    But there is another special reason today which brings affliction and keen anxiety to our hearts. We mean to refer to the Holy Places of Palestine, which have long been disturbed.

    Indeed, if there exists any place that ought to be most dear to every cultured person, surely it is Palestine, where, from the dawn of antiquity, such great light of truth shone for all men, where the Word of God made flesh announced, through the angels' choir, peace to all men; where, finally, Christ hanging on the Cross acquired salvation for all mankind, with arms outstretched as if He were inviting all nations to fraternal harmony; and where He consecrated His precept of charity with the shedding of His blood.

    (Taken from the great Encyclical of His Holiness, Pope Pius XII ON PUBLIC PRAYERS FOR WORLD PEACE AND SOLUTION OF THE PROBLEM OF PALESTINE)

  14. I have never felt more embarrassed & ashamed to be an American.

    Yet I have never felt prouder & more grateful to be a Catholic Christian!

    Our Lord have mercy, watch over & protect our brothers and sisters in the ME/NA...

  15. One basis for excommunication:

    The supply of arms, ammunition or war-material to Saracens, Turks or other enemies of Christendom.

    - Papal Bull: In Coena Domini

    It is high time for this clause of "In Coena Domini" to be revived!

  16. Last year, I warned my two sons in the USMC that this was coming. Now, it appears they will be dragged into this insanity. Once again, the U.S. is supporting the wrong side in a Middle East conflict.

  17. Sr. Pena, thank you for that timely post. Dr. Williams, your sons will be remembered in my prayers. There is not much else to say...

  18. Keep the middle east in your prayers! Our Lady of Fatima pray for us!

  19. It seems we need to write/phone/visit our elected officials.

    No more more more more war.............. Patricia in Stl

  20. There is no side that earns plaudits here. As Pope Paul VI proclaimed
    "War. No More !"

  21. According to the approved apparitions of Our Lady of Akita in 1973, 8 years after the Councils end. Our Lady said that God is preparing a punishment worse than the deluge. She spoke of the crisis in the Church, "Altars will be plundered", "Cardinal will oppose Cardinal, Bishop will oppose Bishop". Our Lady was clearly showing us the seriousness of the modernist heresy. So ugly is this heresy and its consequences that it may earn us a third world war. We Traditionalists have been given a great responsibility from God. We must not fail!


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