(Assyrian Church) - The churches of the Oriental Orthodox family and the Assyrian Church of the East, along with representatives of the Catholic Church and a number of Protestant churches came together for a joint meeting on 17 June 2013 at the Virgin Mary Cathedral, Armenian Apostolic Church in Los Angeles.
The meeting was hosted by His Eminence Hovnan Derderian, Archbishop of the Western Diocese of the Armenian Apostolic Church who received all attendees with immense joy.
The meeting was also attended by His Eminence Mor Clemis Eugene Kaplan, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Western USA of the Syriac Orthodox Church and His Grace Mar Aprim Khamis, Bishop of the Diocese of Western USA of the Assyrian Church of the East along with three priests of the Assyrian Church of the East.
His Grace Bishop Serapion of the Coptic Orthodox Church was unable to attend the meeting due to other important commitments.
Priests and relevant committee members of the Coptic, Catholic and Protestant churches were also present for the meeting.
The purpose of the meeting was to strengthen the bonds of fraternity between the churches and to compose a committee which would examine ways to aid Christian refugees who are arriving in the United States from the Middle East. At the same time, the attendees discussed the manner in which the churches present could deliver their concerns and proposals to relevant governmental and international bodies in the United States.
The meeting was opened with prayer by His Eminence Archbishop Mor Clemis Eugene Kaplan. His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian then welcomed all attendees and initiated a discussion on a range of topics including an acceleration of engagement with government authorities with respect to addressing the humanitarian needs facing the faithful of the churches.
The attendees agreed to hold a second meeting to be hosted by His Eminence Archbishop Mor Clemis Eugene Kaplan at the St Ephrem Cathedral of the Syriac Orthodox Church in Los Angeles on 19 August 2013.
The intention of the second meeting is to move forward with specific projects that will be of benefit and service to Middle Eastern Christians fleeing their homes and places of origin in search of shelter and safety elsewhere.
The meeting at the Armenian Apostolic Church concluded with prayers offered by His Grace Bishop Mar Aprim Khamis.