Catholicosate of Cilicia
Antelias - Lebanon
10 September 2015. On Thursday Catholicos Aram I received a group representing the participants of the Ecumenical Consultation on Refugees, jointly organized by the World Conference of Churches (WCC) and the Middle East Council of Churches (MECC). After a brief a presentation of the goals and expectations of the conference by WCC and MECC staff, His Holiness shared his concerns on the current situation and treatment of refugees. Recalling the 1915 Genocide of Armenians by Turkey and their displacement from their homes, the Catholicos said, “We share the pain of the refugees because they remind us of our grandparents who were forced out of their homes by leaving everything behind.” He then spoke of the dire situation of all refugees in the region and added that the current uprooting of Christians will certainly have a serious impact on Christian presence in the Middle East. His Holiness then asked the guests to take up the issue of assistance to refugees with their churches and governments and advocate for their cause.