Maaloula, Syria, August 20, 2018
A great spiritual event took place recently when the Divine Liturgy was served in the St. Thekla Monastery in Maaloula, Syria on August 12.
This was the first Liturgy served there in several years after the city was taken over by terrorists and several of the nuns were kidnapped for several months, reports ekklisiaonline.gr.
The service was celebrated by His Grace Bishop Luke of Damascus.
The city was freed from terrorists in 2014, after which the restoration of the city and the monastery began. OrthoChristian.com earlier reported that the nuns had returned to the monastery which had reopened its doors to pilgrims and tourists, and that the finishing touches were being put on the reconstruction.
Work on the monastery has now been completed, and with the liturgical life revived, the monastery is again a source of spiritual nourishment for the Orthodox faithful.
The Monastery of St. Thekla is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. ISIS invaded the small town of Maaloula on September 5, 2013, going on a rampage against Christian people and buildings, destroying all holy sites in the city. 3,000 fled the city, leaving only Muslims and the monastery’s forty nuns, twelve of whom were kidnapped by ISIS in early December of the same year. The nuns were released in March 2014.
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