Melkite Greek Catholic Church

date of foundation:  1724
official website:

The Melkite Greek Catholic Church (Arabic: كنيسة الروم الملكيين الكاثوليك, Kanīsat ar-Rūm al-Malakiyyīn al-Kāṯūlīk; Greek: Μελχιτική Ελληνική Καθολική Εκκλησία; Latin: Ecclesiae Graecae Melchitae Catholicae), or Melkite Byzantine Catholic Church, is an Eastern Catholic church in full communion with the Holy See as part of the worldwide Catholic Church. Its chief pastor is Patriarch Youssef Absi, headquartered at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Dormition, Damascus, Syria. The Melkites, who are Byzantine Rite Catholics, trace their history to the early Christians of Antioch, formerly part of Syria and now in Turkey, of the 1st century AD, where Christianity was introduced by Saint Peter.The Melkite Church, like many other Eastern Catholic particular churches, shares the Byzantine Rite with the Greek Orthodox Church of Antioch and other Eastern Orthodox churches. It is mainly centered in Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel and Palestine. Melkite Greek Catholics are present, however, throughout the world by migration due to persecution of Christians. Outside the Near East, the Melkite Church has also grown through intermarriage with, and the conversion of, people of various ethnic heritages as well as transritualism. At present there is a worldwide membership of approximately 1.6 million.While the Melkite Catholic Church's Byzantine liturgical traditions are shared with those of Eastern Orthodoxy, the church has officially been part of the Catholic Church since re-entering communion with the Holy See under Patriarch Cyril VI Tanas in 1724. Those who rejected this move formed the extant Greek Orthodox Church of Antioch. Source: Wikipedia (en)


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