ATCHANE, Lebanon — Three Syriac Orthodox Metropolitans were ordained at the Church of Our Lady in Atchane, Lebanon on Sunday: Mor Severios Roger Akhras as Patriarchal Vicar for Syriac Studies, Mor Kyrillos Babi as Patriarchal Vicar of the Archdiocese of Daramsuq (Damascus), and Mor Youssef Bali as Patriarchal Secretary.
The ceremony was presided over by Syriac Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch and All the East Mor Ignatius Aphrem II. The ceremony was attended by a number of metropolitans and members of the Syriac community, including Patriarch Mor Ignatius Youssef III Younan, Patriarch John X of Antioch, Archbishop Shahi, Archbishop Antoine Bou Negm, and president of the Universal Syriac Union Party (USUP) Ibrahim Mrad.
During the Divine Liturgy, the newly ordained proclaimed their “Confession of Faith” and signed it in front of the Patriarch. Patriarch Aphrem II then recited to the ordained the prayer of the Holy Spirit, followed by the prayer of laying on the hand. They were then elevated to the degree of headship of the holy priesthood.
During the celebration, the ordained delivered speeches in which they thanked God for this blessing and spoke about their vocation and vision for their episcopal service.
Patriarch Aphrem II then delivered a speech in which he highlighted the historical importance of the occasion.
“For the first time in hundreds of years, an Archbishop or metropolitan has been ordained from Lebanon,” he said.
The ordination was held the day after the conclusion of the Holy Synod.