30/03/2020

Syriac Catholic Patriarchate of Antioch elects two new Bishops for Jerusalem and Rome

BEIRUT – The Secretariat of the Syriac Catholic Patriarchate of Antioch in Beirut issued a statement announcing the election of two new Bishops: Father Aphrem Samaan as Bishop of Jerusalem, the Holy Land, and Jordan and Father Rami Qabalan as Bishop accredited to the Holy See in Rome.

The Syriac Bishops Synod of the Syriac Catholic Church, in its session held in the Monastery of Our Lady of Deliverance, elected the two Bishops on 28 March 2020. His Holiness Pope Francis confirmed that the episcopal ordination celebration date will be decided for each of the elected bishops, at a date to be announced later.

Bishop Aphrem Samaan was born in Beirut, Lebanon, in 1980. He obtained a B.A. in Philosophy and Theology from the Pontifical Theology College at the Holy Spirit University – Kaslik and a B.A. in Canon Law from the University of Wisdom – Beirut.

He was ordained as an Evangelical deacon, then was appointed as a priest. He was also appointed as a Secretary of the Patriarchate and a member of the Patriarchal Liturgical Committee. He was then dispatched to Jerusalem, where he was appointed as an aide to Bishop Mar Gregory Boutros Malki.

Bishop Rami Qabalan was born in Zaidal, Homs, Syria, in 1979. He obtained an M.A. in Theology, and a PhD in Canon Law from the Pontifical Oriental Institute in Rome. He was ordained as an Evangelical deacon, then was appointed as a priest.

In Rome, he was appointed as an assistant to the supreme priest, George Masri, and was responsible for the pastoral service for the displaced people in Rome. His Holiness Pope Francis, appointed him as an apostolic visitor to the Syriac Catholics in Europe.

Both bishops are fluent in Syriac, Arabic, and English.