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Witness to Genocide: Syrian Archbishop to Speak in New Haven


Archbishop Jean-Clément Jeanbart of Aleppo, Syria

Melkite Catholic Archbishop Jean-Clément Jeanbart of Aleppo, Syria, will speak on the genocide being waged against his people and the future of Christianity in the Middle East on Sunday, May 1, at 6:30 p.m., during a talk at St. Mary’s Church, 5 Hillhouse Avenue, New Haven, Conn., co-sponsored by the Knights of Columbus.

Aleppo, Syria’s largest city, has been shattered by civil war and genocide at the hands of ISIS. In 2013, American aid worker Kayla Mueller was kidnapped by ISIS and killed in their custody. Aleppo’s Syriac Orthodox and Greek Orthodox archbishops were also kidnapped that same year and have not been heard from since.

Archbishop Jeanbart was a featured speaker during the States Dinner of the 2015 Supreme Convention in Philadelphia.

“We have seen people killed, slaughtered, women violated, priests and bishops kidnapped, houses destroyed, churches and convents invaded,” Archbishop Jeanbart said at the convention. “But we persist with the help of God and with the help of those who help us.”

Archbishop Jeanbart also explained that the ancient city of Aleppo, which has been at the center of trade between the East and the West for centuries, has become a disaster zone, where Christians have suffered the worst devastation.

“The support of our Christian brothers and sisters in the West is extremely needed. Are they willing to hear our desperate appeal?”

St. Mary’s Church is where Father Michael McGivney founded the Knights of Columbus in 1882. The Order has since become the world’s largest Catholic fraternal organization, with 1.9 million members worldwide. To date, the Order has raised more than $8 million to provide housing, food, medical aid, education and general relief to persecuted Christians and other religious minorities through its Christian Refugee Relief Fund.