They were just three hikers who went for a walk over Christmas, or Hannukah, in the rural chalklands of ancient Judea.
The Anglican community of St. Mary in Belgrade, which holds regular services in the chapel at Visegradska Street, traditionally celebrated Christmas with a festal mass in the chapel of St. Symeon atg the Serbian Patriarchate on the Eve of the feast-day on 24 December 2016.
The service was presided over by Chaplain Rev. Robin Fox with the chanting of believers, among which there was Mr. Michael Davenport, Head of the European Union Delegation in Serbia, members of the diplomatic representations in Belgrade, as well as some members of the Lutheran Church.
Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad and his family visited the historical Christian village of Saidnaya, reports Al-Masdar News.
At least once a year, Christians are reminded of Jesus’ prayer for his disciples that “they may be one so that the world may believe” (see John 17.21). Hearts are touched and Christians come together to pray for their unity. Congregations and parishes all over the world exchange preachers or arrange special ecumenical celebrations and prayer services. The event that touches off this special experience is the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.
Father Emanuel Youkhana rues that, for the third Christmas in a row, the church bells will not ring in Mosul.
He recounts that, around June 2014, the numerical religious minorities such as Yazidis and Christians around Iraq’s second biggest city began to face a horrific onslaught by the group calling itself IS (Islamic State), or Daesh in Arabic.
More than 200 abducted Assyrian Christians taken hostage by ISIS in February 2015 were saved by a Syrian priest who managed to raise their ransom money, reports RIA-Novosti.
Simultaneous militant attacks in thirty-five Christian settlements on February 23, 2015 resulted in the abduction of 226 people, one of the largest in the history of the Syrian and Iraqi conflicts.