Maronite cathedral in Aleppo restored following destruction by jihadists during war
The Maronite Christians in Aleppo have restored their cathedral destroyed during the war.
This video was projected during the ceremony, showing its reconstruction story.
It was built in 1873, and renovated in 1914, on another church that already existed in the 15th century.
This is what it looked like inside before the war.
But the cathedral suffered the same fate as the Christians in Aleppo, and was deeply wounded between 2012 and 2016.
Especially, in 2013 the jihadists targeted it in an attempt to erase all Christian vestiges in the area.
When this area of the city was liberated in 2016, a handful of Christians celebrated Christmas here.
Now, with the help of the pontifical foundation ACN and other institutions, the cathedral has been rebuilt.
... and the result is impressive.
Executive President of Aid to the Church in Need (ACN)
“When we now see the Cathedral of Saint Elias, it is a miracle. It is fantastic that its former splendor shines. Hopefully it will once again be the center of the entire Christian community, as it was until the agonizing war.”
Thomas Heine-Geldern asked the Syrian Christians to enter the new cathedral and pray for the thousands of benefactors who helped finance these works.
A light of hope on an uncertain horizon. While the wound in this cathedral is the first to heal, there is another that will take longer to recover: Before the war, there were around 180,000 Christians in Aleppo. Now there are no more than 30,000.
The restoration of this Maronite cathedral represents a new beginning for all of them.
Javier Martínez-Brocal Translation: KM