18 September 2013
Athens: Mor Eustathius Matta Roham visits refugees in Greece on 16 September 2013 and celebrated Holy Qurbono for them.
Mor Eustathius Matta Roham, of Jazirah & Euphrates Archdiocese wrote the followings:
MY VISIT TO ATHENS (These visits were arranged by Father Zakka Jalma in Athens).
16 SEPTEMBER 2013
I had a very busy schedule in Athens yesterday. After arriving from the Airport in Athens, I went directly with Zakka Jalma to the Foreign Ministry to meet the Ambassador in charge for religious affairs. In the afternoon we met two generals to discuss the issue of our refugees how can we make life easy for them until they leave Greece.
Both meetings were helpful. We agreed with the officials upon the followings:
1- Giving Father Zakka a paper to facilitate his visits to persons and families that are arrested in prisons.
2- Giving our refugees a paper which will allow them to stay in Greece for 6 months, and then they must leave.
3- Searching for a possibility of hosting more refugees in a similar building like the one we are using now with a capacity of 25 persons.
4 – I supplied all of them with the Statement and Appeal of the Holy Synod, and told them that the Patriarchal Department of International Affairs in our Church will carry on our Christian position and rights in Syria to all decision making countries.
5- The two generals emphasized on bringing the Church views and demands to the EU. This is helpful to create awareness among other nations.
After our official visit I went with Father Zakka to the building, in which we host 25 persons. There was a newly born male child last week. The boy was named SHARBEL.
We have three stories in the building:
1- The chapel, a dining hall for the community. Father Zakka lives on this floor. He has a bed room, office, and bathroom.
2- The second story is used by males
3- The third story is used by women and children
In evening I celebrated the Holy Eucharist for the refugees and had dinner with them, which they thankfully prepared for us.
This building has hosted about 200 persons: (children, girls, boys, women and young men) for the last eight months. Many people were able to spend long or short period in the building until they joined their relatives in other European countries.