585"Anti-American Sentiments" -- Re: Easter / Prayers
- Apr 26, 2004Steve -
The SOR-Forum is dedicated to disseminating information related to
the spiritual heritage of the Syriac Orthodox Church. Significant
news related to the Church are also disseminated on the forum as
appropriate. Members of the forum are nationals of different
countries including a number of US nationals and residents. We have
no intent to support any political agenda including promoting any
anti-American sentiments. At the same time, we have no intent to
censor messages of interest to Christians in the Middle East because
it may offend some Americans or of other nationalities.
I assume that the quote in Message <a
that provoked you is "The spiritual leaders of the Christian sects
expressed gratitude to President Assad for his kind congratulations,
wishing His Excellency success in leading the country and care for
all the citizens for the best interest of Syria and the Arab Nation."
I cannot agree with your argument that this statement is anti-
American merely because representatives of Middle Eastern Churches
expressed gratitude to Bashar Assad. I guess by the same token, if a
Christian leader were to denounce the denial of civil rights to
Christians in Saudi Arabia that would be "anti-American" as well
because Saudi Arabia is one of the closest US allies.
You go on to claim that the forum consistently promotes anti-American
sentiments. Even if the above statement falls into the category
of "anti-American", the facts do not support your claim. The archives
of messages posted on the forum are available at
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/SOR-Forum. You can go ahead and
determine for yourselves the number of messages that contain any such
While I have no intent to open SOR-Forum for political discussion,
the point you have raised requires a response.
Assad is no doubt a ruler who was not democratically elected who is
obstructing US designs for the Middle East. Now, how many allies of
the US in the Middle East have democratically elected rulers and
Syria is a country that is viewed as a nation that promotes terrorism
in the Middle East by the US. Yet, Saudi Arabia, the closest ally of
the US was the chief exporter of terrorism all over the world,
including the terrorists of 9/11 notoriety. One cannot hide behind
the smoke screen that terrorists were individuals acting on their
own. The Saudi government actively funded ultra-fundamentalist
Wahhabi schools all over the world including US and nurtured agents
of intolerance and terror. The US did nothing about it until the
terrorists struck America.
Syria is perhaps the only country where Christians can live in peace,
practice their religion without fear of reprisal, and aspire to
equality in public life. Is an oblique acknowledgment of this fact
anti-American? Saudi on the other hand is a land where possessing a
Bible or Christian literature, practicing any religion other than
Islam is a crime with grave punishment. Yet, the US is its closest
ally; the US has not been able or willing to exert any influence on
them to permit even a modicum of civil rights for non-Muslims. Aren't
the human values of liberty and equality what America stands for?
In Iraq, Christians who have lived there since time immemorial have
been given the cold shoulder by the US administrators as the
political future of the country is being determined. Despite the evil
perpetrated by the butcher of Baghdad, the Christian minority fared
better than many other countries in the Middle East; today, the
Christian minority lives in the fear of being obliterated. In such
circumstances, can you blame the Christians in the Middle East for
being grateful to Assad?
I hope you will reconsider your intemperate remarks and recognize
that denying human beings liberty, equality and fundamental civil
rights are truly what is "anti-American."
--- In SOR-Forum@yahoogroups.com, Steve Dennehy <svjd@y...> wrote:
> SOR Forum
> I'm very tired of constant anti-American sentiments
> and the praising of dictators in the Middle East by so
> called Christians on this forum. Apparrently Saddam
> Hussein and and Syria's Assad are living saints.
> Give me a break.
> Let's try to remember that Our Lord Yeshua Messiah
> (Jesus Christ), our God and only Saviour, is the
> Divine Jew not the Divine Syrian.
> Steve Dennehy
> --- Thomas P <thomas_pa1@y...> wrote:
> > Syrian Arab News Agency, Sun 11 Apr 2004
> > DAMASCUS, April. 11
> > Christian sects in Syria who follow the eastern and
> > Western calendars
> > celebrated on Sunday Easter through performing
> > prayers, masses and
> > preaches.
> > Patriarch of Antioch and all the East of the Roman
> > Catholics
> > Gregorius III Laham chaired a large masse in Roman
> > Catholic
> > Patriarchate in which he spoke about the sublime
> > values of Easter and
> > the divine message conveyed by Christ for salvation
> > of humanity as a
> > whole.
> > A large religious mass also was held at Mar Jurjus
> > Cathedral for the
> > Assyrian-Orthodox. . It was led by Patriarch Mar
> > Agnatuis Zakka Ewas
> > I, the patriarch of Antioch and the whole east and
> > the higher
> > chairman of the Assyrian-Orthodox church in the
> > world.
> > In similar sermons the spiritual leader of the
> > Anglican church in
> > Damascus, Botrous Zaour and archbishop of the
> > Armenian Orthodox in
> > Damascus Armache Balandian spoke in their separate
> > sermons about the
> > humanitarian message of the Christ to free human
> > beings from their
> > sin and suffering.
> > Similar masses and sermons were observed in other
> > churches and
> > cathedrals in the capital and all over the Syrian
> > governorates to
> > mark the glorious occasion and to commemorate the
> > spirit of
> > coexistence shared by all Syrians of diverse groups
> > and religions.
> > Speeches and preaches during the sermons hailed
> > Syria's national
> > stance, her continuous efforts for realizing just
> > and comprehensive
> > peace in the region and her commitment to justice
> > and right values.
> > Speeches and preaches also condemned the accusations
> > and threats
> > against Syria which aim at subduing the whole region
> > and plundering
> > its wealth and treasures.
> > In this respect and on directive from president
> > Bashar al-Assad, the
> > Minister of the Presidential Affairs Dr. Ghassan
> > Laham on Sunday
> > conveyed the President's heartfelt congratulation to
> > the spiritual
> > leaders of the Christian sects on the occasion of
> > the Easter, wishing
> > them success in their work.
> > Dr. Laham visited His Eminence Patriarch Ignatius IV
> > Hazim of the
> > Roman Orthodox, Archbishop Luca, His Eminence
> > Patriarch Gregorius III
> > Laham of the Roman Catholics, Archbishop Isidor
> > Battikha, Archbishop
> > Elias Tibbi at the Patriarchate of the Assyrian
> > Catholics and others.
> > The spiritual leaders of the Christian sects
> > expressed gratitude to
> > President Assad for his kind congratulations,
> > wishing His Excellency
> > success in leading the country and care for all the
> > citizens for the
> > best interest of Syria and the Arab Nation.
> > Awkaf Minister, Mohammad Ziada also visited the
> > spiritual leaders of
> > the Christian sects and offered them his
> > congratulations on the
> > occasion of Easter.
> > During the meeting the spiritual leaders hailed the
> > national unity
> > and coexistence which Syria enjoys.
> > Ghossoun /
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> > "Let every man be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow
> > to anger."
> > (James 1:19)
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