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Vatican Radio: A meaningful gesture by the Patriarch of the Syrian Orthodox Church towards the Pope John Paul II

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  • Gabriel Rabo
    Text that the Vatican Radio will broadcast around the world on the occasion of the meeting between His Holiness John Paul II and the Patriarch Ignatius
    Message 1 of 1 , May 3, 2001
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      Text that the Vatican Radio will broadcast around the world on the
      occasion of the meeting between His Holiness John Paul II and the Patriarch
      Ignatius Zakka I Iwas on May 5th 2001 in Damascus.
      _________________

      A meaningful gesture by the Patriarch of the Syrian Orthodox Church towards
      the Pope John Paul II

      In the context of a courageous ecumenical mission by Pope John
      Paul II dedicated to promoting unity among all Christian Churches, is
      included a small event that has great significance.

      Some two years ago group of Bishops of the Syrian Orthodox
      Church together with leaders of the Syriac lay communities all over the
      world decided to underwrite a mass media project that would divulge the
      history of their Church and its congregation by commissioning a film
      accompanied by a literary publication that would give the widest possible
      vision of the subject content.

      By coincidence, Giacomo Pezzali, the producer they approached,
      had already made two films that concerned the reigning Pontiff. The first,
      “FROM A FAR COUNTRY” made shortly after John Paul II’s election, traced the
      events that lead Polish citizen Karol Wojtyla to the threshold of his
      papacy; the second, “OUR GOD’S BROTHER”, is based on a play written by the
      Pope when he was a young man.

      After two years of intense production from screenplay to
      pre-production, from location hunting to principal photography the complete
      work is now finished and will soon be distributed around the world in 8
      languages under the title : “THE HIDDEN PEARL”

      Produced in 12 different countries , in the Middle East , India,
      North America and Europe for Trans World Film Italia, the completed work
      comprises a documentary film in three one hour parts directed by Marcello
      Baldi and three richly illustrated volumes written by Professor P. Sebastian
      Brock of the Oriental Institute of Oxford University, the world’s most
      respected expert on the Aramaean people, the Aramaic language, and the histo
      ry of the Syrian Orthodox Church, the guardian of the Aramaean heritage.

      Now, another providential coincidence has deemed that on the eve
      of its worldwide distribution,
      “THE HIDDEN PEARL” , an expression coined by St. Ephraem of Nisibis , 4th
      century Christian theologian, poet, hymnist, and doctor of the Church, to
      define the Kingdom of Heaven, will be given by His Holiness Moran Mor
      Ignatius Zakka I Iwas, Patriarch of Antioch and all the East, Supreme Head
      of the Universal Syrian Orthodox Church, to Pope John Paul II, in a gesture
      of extreme ecumenical significance, during the His Holiness’ visit to
      Damascus on May 5th .
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