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H.H. Patriarch Ignatius Zakka's Encyclical on Fr Abdel's Martyrdom

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  • drthomas_joseph
    His Eminence, our brother in Christ, Mor Severius Hawa Esteemed Archbishop of Baghdad and Basrah After prayers and peace in the Lord, we say: With great sorrow
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 8, 2008
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      His Eminence, our brother in Christ, Mor Severius Hawa
      Esteemed Archbishop of Baghdad and Basrah

      After prayers and peace in the Lord, we say:

      With great sorrow we received the news of the martyrdom of the late
      Reverend Father Yousef Adel Abboudi the parish priest of St.
      Severius the Great, who was slain for sticking to the faith in the
      Lord Jesus in performing his priestly duty. We cried for his
      departure because it is a great loss to the Holy Church and his
      family. Our comfort is in knowing that his virtuous spirit has
      joined the spirits of the martyrs who were seen by St. John the
      apostle as wearing white robes, the robes of righteousness and
      holiness. And we shall perform memorial prayers for him tomorrow at
      St. Ephraim the Syriac church in Ma'arret Saidnaya. And even though
      we grieved for his loss on earth, yet we believe that God's heavenly
      angels has received his soul with praise and hymns of glory.

      His disastrous loss is very great and painful. But although his
      virtuous body was laid to rest on earth, yet we bid him farewell
      with strong faith and surrender to God's will and hope for the
      general resurrection. We should not surrender to grief but we must
      look on his departure through the eye of faith and see his pious
      spirit flying in paradise with the spirits of the martyrs, saints
      and devout priests. St. Paul the apostle commands us not to grieve
      for "those who slept in faith like people of no hope", specially
      that our beloved departed, father Yousef, has granted the crown of
      martyrdom because of his faith in the Lord Jesus and his devotion to
      Him, and we believe that the Lord Jesus has prepared for him in
      heaven a crown of glory according to His promise.

      In the face of such painful calamity we cannot but ask God Almighty
      through the intercession of the righteous man of God, the slain
      priest Yousef, to bring comfort to your eminence's heart and to his
      brothers the priests and to his virtuous widow and his parents and
      his pious uncle, Archdeacon Bashir Abboudi and all members of the
      family and parish whom he served selflessly. And to grant us all
      the power to endure this sorrowful event with faith in the Lord
      Jesus Who promised us that He will come again with great glory and
      all those in the graves will hear His voice and come forth, those
      who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have
      done evil to the resurrection of condemnation (John 5: 28-29). Let
      his soul be with the saints who believed and done good works and let
      his memory be everlasting.

      May the grace of God be with you. ܐܒܘܢ ܕܒܫܡܝܐ ܘܫܪܟܐ (Our Father Who
      art in HeavenÂ…).

      (Seal and Signature)
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