Voices from Russia

Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Russian Soldiers Protect Children that Speak Jesus’ Language in Syria


Ma’loula in Syria is one of the last bastions of the language used by our Lord Jesus Christ… Aramaic. Ma’loula sprawls in a gorge between mountains, amidst the sands of the Syrian desert. This ancient city endured wars and other troubles over the ages. Ma’loula is unique as it has one of the world’s most ancient Christian monasteries, Mar Taqla Monastery. The Church of Ss Sergius and Taqla had many icons painted in the old canonical Orthodox style. St Taqla was an ancient Christian saint, one of the forerunners of female monasticism, who knew the Apostle Paul himself. In fact, she was his student. People in Ma’loula still speak amongst themselves the old Syriac dialect of Aramaic… the native language of Lord Jesus Christ himself.

Sadly, the conflict in Syria didn’t spare ancient Ma’loula. Terrorists desecrated Christian shrines, they stole holy Icons, and they took her people captive or put them to the sword, tortured and destitute of their former serene glory, of which the world wasn’t worthy. However, thanks to Russia, peace is returning in measure to Syria, and after they liberated towns from Western-backed “moderate” decapitators, Russian officers from the Centre for the Reconciliation of Opposing Sides came with humanitarian aid in their hands. Russian troops brought over three tonnes of humanitarian aid to orphans in the city. Rita Bakhba, a monastic novice at the monastery, said:

Before the liberation of Ma’loula, militants plundered the church. They stole 26 icons. We recovered one depicting the Archangels Michael and Gabriel. We saw the tragic result of vandalism… they covered their faces with plaster (the Ottoman Turks used this method against icons). They also desecrated and destroyed the altar (altars are the most sacred part of Orthodox Churches, with a tabernacle in which Orthodox Christians believe the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ are present in the Sacrament). However, thanks to the labours of our youth, we’re gradually restoring our church.

The Russian aid packages contained rice, sugar, canned meat, tea (a must for any Syrian or Russian), school bags, stationery, clothing, and personal hygiene items. They came in bags labelled “Syria… Russia is With You!” Military doctors assisted over 106 people, including 35 children. The children sang folk songs and something incredibly rare happened… they laughed. Their teachers had tears in their eyes, as during the years of the war, the sight of happy children was quite uncommon. The children hugged the soldiers, saying, “Shukraan Rusii” (Thank you, Russians). Departing Ma’loula, the Russian troops took with them not only a portion of the grace and holiness which flows from the city like water from a fountain but the warmth of the children’s hearts… who need love and care all the days of their lives.

31 January 2018

Nick Ivanov

Russia Feed



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