The Antiochian Patriarchate released the following statement, against claims that it was involved in arming its members to somehow participate in the conflict going on in Syria between government forces and Islamic radicals:
We, Patriarchate of Antioch and All the East and the Roman Orthodox priests of the Cathedral of Mary in Damascus confirm the invalidity of the rumors about the arming of her flock Patriarchate in Bab Touma and Bab Touma outside the Patriarchate or request from the competent authorities that the arms of its sons.
We reject outright (not attempt) in the parish children vicious cycle of violence in favor of any party whatsoever,
Because we believe as Christians, the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ, who calls for the love of each other and pray for each other on the difference our communities (because our God is the God of love and peace) and we do not we meet evil with evil, but we meet evil with good.
And we ask our children and our loved ones and hear our voice not being drawn to take up arms and drifting in a spiral of violence against any of it and whatever his sect, and for any reason whatsoever, because the Lord said: Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, Pray for those who persecute you.