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Digging for the Truth episode on History Channel

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  • albertkieholl
    I was watching an episode of Digging for the Truth on the History Channel, and the host was in Jerusalem at the Monastery of St. Mark speaking with Archbishop
    Message 1 of 3 , May 23, 2006
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      I was watching an episode of Digging for the Truth on the History
      Channel, and the host was in Jerusalem at the Monastery of St. Mark
      speaking with Archbishop Severios Malki Murad. The host was trying
      to track down subjects for DNA testing in his attempt to prove or
      disprove the claims made in the book The Da Vinci Code, namely, that
      Jesus Christ had children by Mary Magdalene, the descendants of whom
      are still alive today. In the discussion with the Archbishop, it
      sounded like the Archbishop declared that the members of his
      community were not only followers of Jesus Christ, but were actual
      physical descendants of Jesus.
      I could not determine if the Archbishop misunderstood the question
      or if he was actually affirming that Jesus had children during his
      earthly life. Could someone clarify this for me? Does the Syriac
      Orthodox Church believe Jesus married and fathered children? Where
      might I read something about this?
      I am interested in exploring the various Orthodox (Eastern and
      Oriental) communions, perhaps with an eye toward joining one, so
      this information would be helpful.
      Blessings,
      Albert Kieholl
    • sandalow1
      I m the wrong person to answer this, but I saw the same show (twice) and heard exactly what you did. I don t think he understood the question. I suspect he
      Message 2 of 3 , May 23, 2006
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        I'm the wrong person to answer this, but I saw the same show (twice)
        and heard exactly what you did. I don't think he understood the
        question.

        I suspect he thought he was being asked if his community are the
        descendents of the early church and followers of Jesus. He may also
        have taken the question to be more spiritual in nature than biological.

        I've been to St. Marks In Jerusalem. Too bad they didn't talk more
        about the church.
      • drthomas_joseph
        Dear Albert - This is clearly a misunderstanding/misinterpretation on both ends. I imagine that Mor Severus Malki Murad is not aware of the exact accusations
        Message 3 of 3 , May 23, 2006
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          Dear Albert -

          This is clearly a misunderstanding/misinterpretation on both ends. I
          imagine that Mor Severus Malki Murad is not aware of the exact
          accusations being made in the Da Vinci code. I am pretty certain
          that he meant to say that a number of the Semitic Syriac Orthodox
          Christians in the Middle East have a blood lineage that can be
          traced back to the Semitic community into which Lord Jesus was born
          and from where the apostolic Christian community originated. Did he
          mean that the blood lineage is traced back to our Lord Jesus
          Himself? I would think the archbishop would have to be a big
          ignoramus about Syriac Orthodox doctrine and faith to suggest that.
          Knowing Mor Severus' background I don't believe he would ever
          suggest that.

          Let us say a person had an uncle who is a Syriac Orthodox bishop,
          obviously celibate. Does that person have a blood lineage with the
          bishop? Absolutely. Does this mean that he is the bishop's son.
          Absolutely not.

          Unfortunately, language has nuances. This is, I am pretty certain, a
          case where the bishop interpreted the question literally. What the
          bishop said has some truth to it (although he is discounting the
          fact that the Syriac Orthodox Church faithful in the Middle East
          have come from different ethnic backgrounds - Jew and Gentiles of
          different races.) In his eagerness to talk about his community's
          ancestry, he may not have suspected the possible misinterpretation
          of his answer. On the other hand, the host and his listeners appear
          to be reading more than what the bishop said or intended to say. And
          I believe the interpretation is wrong.

          PS: I welcome you to explore the Syriac Orthodox tradition. Do post
          your questions on the forum and visit the SOR web site as well as
          the several other web sites linked to it.

          Thomas Joseph, PhD
          Web Master, SOR (http://sor.cua.edu/)
          Technical Editor, Hugoye: Journal of Syriac Studies
          (http://bethmardutho.cua.edu/Hugoye/)

          --- In SOR-Forum@yahoogroups.com, "albertkieholl"
          <albertkieholl@...> wrote:
          >
          > I was watching an episode of Digging for the Truth on the History
          > Channel, and the host was in Jerusalem at the Monastery of St.
          Mark
          > speaking with Archbishop Severios Malki Murad. The host was trying
          > to track down subjects for DNA testing in his attempt to prove or
          > disprove the claims made in the book The Da Vinci Code, namely,
          that
          > Jesus Christ had children by Mary Magdalene, the descendants of
          whom
          > are still alive today. In the discussion with the Archbishop, it
          > sounded like the Archbishop declared that the members of his
          > community were not only followers of Jesus Christ, but were actual
          > physical descendants of Jesus.
          > I could not determine if the Archbishop misunderstood the question
          > or if he was actually affirming that Jesus had children during his
          > earthly life. Could someone clarify this for me? Does the Syriac
          > Orthodox Church believe Jesus married and fathered children? Where
          > might I read something about this?
          > I am interested in exploring the various Orthodox (Eastern and
          > Oriental) communions, perhaps with an eye toward joining one, so
          > this information would be helpful.
          > Blessings,
          > Albert Kieholl
          >
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